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Uvalde, Texas …the Answer

Greetings Friends! The tragedy of Uvalde, Texas has left the nation and the world stunned and shocked in disbelief. In the aftermath, President Biden has signed into law a bipartisan gun bill intended to prevent access to powerful firearms by dangerous people. But the search for answers continues for a nation which has seen its share of gun violence tragedies. What is the answer? In fact, it may not be as farfetched as we have been led to believe, nor complex as we first imagined. The Bible gives us the answer eloquently and precisely in Jesus’ parable of the bags of gold.

Jesus Parable of Love (Gold)

You’ll read the parable in the Book of Matthew, Chapter 25, Verses 14-30. The ‘bags of gold’ is simply a metaphor for God’s Love. The parable speaks of the Master apportioning His wealth, the bags of gold or God’s Love, to the three servants. One was given 5 bags, the second 2 bags, and the third 1 bag of gold.

The parable tells us that the servants were apportioned their respective bags of gold commensurate with their inborn gifts and talents. The Creator has blessed every human being He made in His image with gifts and abilities from the womb.

The Psalmist said, “For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psa.139:13-14). The gifts in the parable depict all humanity that are categorized into three groupings with different talents and abilities as God our Creator has blessed each and every human being.

Image result for you created every part of me pic
All Human Gifts Are Dinvinely Conferred And We Acknowledge Our Creator

So, there are two aspects to the Parable, there is the Master’s gold or God’s Love (wealth), and there is the servant’s inborn gifts or abilities the Creator has conferred upon each human being from birth. Each of our gifts does not make one inferior or superior, but rather we all complement each other so together we reflect God in His all-embracing Love.   

The grand scheme of the Master was for the servants to go out and multiply and increase the Master’s Love. His wealth (gold) is His Love. The servants were to utilize God’s Love (wealth/gold) like it was spiritual money and currency to trade with. But how were the servants to do this? The servants were to trade and multiply God’s gold (Love) on the platform of their gifts and abilities. So, the Parable of the bags of gold reveals to humanity the grand purpose of life of the Creator and Master. The purpose of life is to multiply His Love (wealth/gold) by using our gifts and talents as  the platform for trading the currencies of God’s Love.

Jesus’ Parable of the Bags of Gold (Love)

The person who took the lives of the school children of Uvalde was given gifts by the Creator. No human can be said to be without abilities, it’s only a question of how, when, and with what we use them? Humans are always living in the spiritual marketplace dynamism where spiritual trading takes place. What is the spiritual marketplace? It is incumbent upon us to recognize its existence and realize this is the place we encounter God at work with all humans. Primarily, it is wherever and whenever we find ourselves in situations encountering circumstances where Love is made to grow and mature, and not allowed to retrogress and decline in our relationships with God first and our fellow humans. (Matt.22:37-40)

Satan creates fear, Jesus brings God’s Love. This is the marketplace dynamism where spiritual trading takes place. Love and fear compels us to make a choice. This is where we are given the unparallel prospect to multiply and increase the master’s wealth…or decrease and weaken God’s wealth (Love) in our lives. We must choose our paths, what will it be? The first Adam chose for us in Eden and mankind have been consigned to a life based upon the spirit of fear. Then God sent the second Adam, His Son Jesus Christ, and He has made it possible to walk and live in the Spirit’s power of Love. (1 Cor.13; John 16:7; Luk.24:49; 2 Cor.15:45)

Robb Elementary School, Uvalde, Texas

For a more complete articulation of this beautiful parable of Jesus, please go to my post at:  http://bulamanriver.net/30033, titled, “What Did The One-Talent Servant Do Wrong?”

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.

Uvalde, Texas

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, or divisions one may espouse – 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, 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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee
(Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26Matt.28:19John 14:101616:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God as a Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-201 Pet.1:22 Thess.2:132 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2Eph.5:23-2732Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity – One in Three, Three in One (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

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

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

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.

WHAT DID THE ONE-TALENT SERVANT DO WRONG?

Greetings Friends! In my post titled, “Gifts Are Magnets of the Love Personality” (http://bulamanriver.net/27435), I dwelt at length on Jesus’ parable of the “Bags of Gold” in the Book of Matthew, which you can read in Chapter 25. In it I wrote that people are grouped into three categories commensurate with the varied gifts that God their Creator has placed in them. The first servant represent people God has conferred the greater ability and talent than the second category. And the second group was more gifted than the third category. And the third had the least, but not unimportant or inconsequential.

Parable of Gold Representing God’s Wealth or Love

Whatever the gift or talent does not make a person inferior or superior in God’s sight. What matters is we are using the gift as a platform to enhance and multiply the Master’s wealth (gold) we are given. What does the bags of gold mean and represent? The bags of gold, or God’s wealth, represent His Love, which we receive through the presence of the Holy Spirit, as expounded in the fruits of Love in the Spirit. (1 Cor.3:16; 1 Cor.13:1-12) He is the third Person of the Tri-Personal God (Trinity). (Matt.28:18-19)

So, each servant (human being) was apportioned God’s Love as determined by the Master. We are given the Holy Spirit (Love) by measure. Only Jesus possesses the Holy Spirit without measure. The Scripture speaks about Jesus in this way, “He has come from above and is greater than anyone else. We are of the earth, and we speak of earthly things, but He has come from heaven and is greater than anyone else. He testifies about what He has seen and heard…For He who is sent by God. He speaks God’s words, for God gives Him the Spirit without limit. The Father Loves His Son and has put everything into His hands. And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life.” (John 3:31, 34-36, NLT).

Yes, “God gives Him the Spirit without limit” (John 3:34). Jesus is God’s Son and therefore have the full measure of the Spirit for they are One with the Father in the trinitarian Godhead. (Matt.28:18-19) We recall the origin of humanity, created perfect in God’s image, subsequently fell due to Adam’s sin, thus, mankind was cut off from access to the Holy Spirit in Eden, as represented by the Tree of Life. (Gen.3:24) Yes, since the fall, mankind has drifted so further and far away from God and His Love (Spirit), and closer to the enemy Adam obeyed, Satan. (Gen.3:1-6; 11)

We are fallen human beings and conferred the Spirit by measure in three proportions – 5, 2, and 1 as the parable lays out. (Matt.25:15) The Holy Spirit is the personification of God’s Love and wealth in mankind. (1 Cor.3:16) But as the parable goes on to say, God’s Love can be increased and we are given the task to multiply His Love/wealth through trade in the spiritual marketplace. And in the parable Jesus gave earlier, we are responsible for replenishing God’s Love (Spirit) and make it grow. (Parable of 10 Virgins, Matt.25:1-13)   

What Are Spiritual Gifts? Understanding the Types and Discovering Yours
God’s Love is His Wealth We are Given Proportionally to Invest and Make Returns

The first two servants returned one hundred percent of the Master’s investment rationed to them. One hundred percent is one hundred percent regardless of the amount rationed, whether 5, 2, or 1. It is the end result which counts. This can be likened to athletes competing in a race like the Olympic Games. We can’t expect an athlete to win gold medals in every contest, but in the particular ones they are gifted. A gold in the marathon race, is no different with the gold in the high jump, except that it is a separate skill category. Each athlete possesses different gift and ability to win a medal (wealth/Love). They are rationed with different amount of the Master’s wealth based upon their gift and capability. (Matt.25:15) Jesus said, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven” (John 3:27). No one can produce more than his/her gift can allow and sustain. That’s to say, whatever “is given them from above” (John 3:27).

Human gifts are allotted and dispersed by determination of the Creator. In fact, the Bible says that we “may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col.2:2-3). So, the Father has determined that all human gifts and talents are spawned, apportioned, and appropriated through Jesus Christ. Through His Son, the second Person in the triune Godhead, human gifts and abilities are “mysteries hidden in Him (Christ) carrying all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” The “treasures of wisdom and knowledge” speaks of human gifts and capabilities. Yes, James tells us, “Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow” (Jam.1:17).

Peter wrote to Christians, “Grace and peace to you many times over as you deepen in your experience with God and Jesus, our Master. Everything that goes into a life of pleasing God has been miraculously given to us by getting to know, personally and intimately, the One (Jesus) who invited us to God. The best invitation we ever received!” (2 Pet.1:2-3, MSG). So, the human access to God and everything good and sublime (gifts and abilities) arise from the divine grace made possible by Jesus Christ’s mediation as Savior and Mediator for mankind.

In the post (http://bulamanriver.net/27435), I had dwelt at some length about the first two servant who had returned 100% of the investment apportioned to them by the Master. (Matt.25:21, 23). However, the third servant returned his one bag of gold and said, “Here is what belongs to you” (Matt.25:25). The Master was not happy, and said, “‘You wicked, lazy servant! Take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags” (Matt.25:26, 28). Jesus told the unprofitable servant who buried his one bag of gold the very least he could have done, “You should have put My money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I return I would have received it back with interest” (Matt.25:27). However, even such a simple act as that he did not have the foresight to see, let alone perform. But is there more than meets the eye, perhaps, there were considerations he failed to take into account, much less appreciated?

Let me elaborate on the dynamic between a person’s gift and the true wealth (Love/gold) from the perspective of the servanthood attitude and mindset we are called upon to uphold and embrace. In particular we are examining this from the point of view of the third servant in Jesus’ parable of the “Bags of Gold.” What made him/her hide the one talent and did nothing with it? (Luk.19:20) Yet, the preceding two servants were faithful and did what was expected of them. They made 100% increase on the Master’s apportioned investment (Love/gold). (Luk.19:15-19, NLT)

Your Gift and Ability is Your God-Given Platform Upon Which to Trade God’s Love, His Wealth.

God doesn’t want us to compare ourselves with others, He said people who do such things are unwise. Paul said this, “We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they show their ignorance” (2 Cor.10:12, Bereans T.). The point is, He wants us to make the most of what we are given, whether it is 5, 2, or 1 bags of gold with out gifts and abilities. And we earlier read what Jesus said that no one can do more than what he or she is given. (John 3:27) That doesn’t mean you don’t try your best, it simply means your best is all you can do. And when we have done our best, we have the humility to say, we have simply done our duty, for we can do only what we are given. (Luk.17:10; John 3:27) 

Why did the person with the one bag of gold acted the way he did, and not follow the previous two servants? Perhaps by hiding the Master’s gold, he imagined the gold would be safe and sound. Perhaps, he thought that if I gave back what I received, the Master would be happy. Or, he bluntly refused and disobeyed the Master and did something completely unrelated and different. But the Master wanted the servants to trade and make a return, a profit, from His investment. That is the purpose of the Master’s investment plan and why the gold coins (Love) were entrusted to them. That was the purpose of life itself. They must be traded and by using their gift as the driving force, bring back a return. By hiding the gold and doing nothing will result in the exact opposite of what the Master had in mind for His servants, he lost it. (Matt.25:28-30) Love (Master’s wealth) has to be utilized in Loving works in order for Love to grow and multiply. (Eph.2:10) The answer to this dilemma can be attributed to the underlying relationship dynamic which exist between the Master and the servants.

We have seen that we are blessed with gifts and abilities we are born with as the Creator determines. Then He allots to us His wealth (Love) that is commensurate with, that is proportional to, our abilities. If a person is in the first category, he or she is given more bags of the Master’s gold. Sometimes we wish we were given one, so we don’t have to work so hard. Then you have a lot of idle time, and that can be unhelpful for many a people. Remember, the Scripture tell us God looks at the heart, not your output necessarily. Scripture tells us, “The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart” (1 Sam.16:7). We must not invert the priority and think that life all about output with no heart. The opposite is true, General McArthur said, “It must be of the spirit (heart) if we are to save the flesh (human output).” The heart is where the gift resides. And He already knows what is expected from your gift, for He knows you better than you know yourself. (Psa.139:13)

I said the servants refer to all humanity who are grouped into three categories of people according to their inborn gifts and abilities the Creator has conferred upon them. Besides the gift, humans are given God’s wealth or God’s Love by utilizing their gits as the platform to trade in the Spiritual marketplace. The first is given 5 bags of gold, the second is given 2 bags of gold, and the third is given 1 bag of gold. (Matt.25:14-15; 1 John 4:8). What is the spiritual marketplace? It is incumbent upon us to recognize its existence and know God’s hands at work in it. Primarily, it is wherever and whenever we are in situations encountering circumstances where Love is made to grow and mature, and not allowed to retrogress and decline in our relationships with God and our fellow humans. God’s wealth (Love), like any wealth-accruing system, have currencies by which it is valued, appraised, and calculated, as we shall see.

Scriptures affirm, “Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow” (Jam.1:17). Paul says, “In His grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well… If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly. Don’t just pretend to Love others. Really Love them” (Rom.12:6-9).

“God is Love” 1 John 4:8, 16

The currency of Love was expounded by Paul in his letter to the Corinthian church. What exactly is this ‘Love currency’ or spiritual value system we utilize and trade upon the platform of our gifts and abilities? It behooves us to be intelligibly concsious of the divine currency system for without knowledge and recognition of God’s Love currency, how would we trade in God’s ‘spiritual marketplace?’ It begins with the Holy Spirit, as Paul told 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). Paul said further, “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Cor.3:16). So, without the Spirit we have no spiritual currency to start with, let alone trade with God’s wealth (Love).

Peter, in his memorable message on Pentecost, informs us about how the Spirit is able to come and make His abode in the life of humans, “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). (You can read about the “New Spiritual Birth” at: http://bulamanriver.net/17978) So, humans were created to be a temple, a repository, of God’s Love through the Spirit’s presence, individually and collectively as a Church. With that, each and every believer is given spiritual money and currency of Love, in amounts of five, two, one, bags of gold, “each according to his ability,” as the case may be, with which to trade in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’ (Matt.25:15)

There is one vital truth about life we must not overlook, and that is, no one is an island to himself or herself, where he or she can survive alone. Therefore, there is someone who need your inborn gift because he lacks what you have. The same is true the other way around. Sometimes we try to do too much, but we accomplish less or next to nothing. We can’t be everything to everyone for no one is super multi-gifted. But we can be something to someone with our specific gift and ability. We must stay narrowly and close to what we are good at through our talents. This was God’s plan all along. In this way, we live the life of co-dependance rather than trying to do everything which is impossible. God is by nature the same way in His collaborative Triune nature (Trinity). We are not to live a life of autonomy from God, but dependance upon His promises for us. Our promise to our fellow humans is our gift.

Peter said this, “Through these He has given us His very great and precious promises (gifts), so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires” (2 Pet.1:4). Yes, in living the Master/servant relationship, God’s many precious promises (gifts) form the backbone of that relationship. Humans cannot survive without the divine promises of the Creator, and we cannot survive on our own without dependence on each other’s gift and ability. It’s almost like God is saying that your inborn gift is your ‘life-promise’ to help your fellow humans, much like God’s Love-promises to us. (You can read my post, “Standing On The Promises” at: http://bulamanriver.net/15209) Right here, we are standing upon the platform of our gifts, trading our talents in the power of God’s Love, to help those in need of our gifts and abilitites. Paul said, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Eph.2:10).

Dove, Symbol of Holy Spirit and God’s Love

God’s ‘Love currency’ are the fruits of the Spirit’s Love which Paul communicated to the Corinthian Christians. (1 Cor.13:1-13). Paul begins by saying “without Love I am nothing.” Paul stated the ‘Love currency’ are actually the Love-fruits of the Holy Spirit, and Paul tell us what they are: *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness,  *the fruit of modesty (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; also Gal. 5:22-23; Rom. 12:9-21).

What we see above in the Love-fruits represent the currency of Love through the Spirit’s presence in human life. Both Jesus and the Spirit co-exist in the heart of God’s children, for Paul said, “Christ lives in me;” and “You are God’s temple that God’s Spirit dwells in” (Gal.2:20; 1 Cor.3:16; Act.17:28). What we see above are the fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit) which we feed upon every day in life’s human journey upon earth. They represent the currencies of God’s wealth (Love/gold) with which we trade upon the platform of our gifts, talents, and capabilities.

The important question from the parable remains, why did the servant who was given one ‘bag of gold’ failed to do as the prior two who were given 5 and 2 bags of gold and returned 100% returns by investing the Master’s wealth/Love? The reason is he did not appreciate the Master/servant dynamic which is necessary to make the relationship work. I would like to share 6 principles any servant must observe and always keep at the forefront of their thoughts if he or she desires to go on in life and make a return to the Master’s wealth (Love) we have been entrusted.

Fruit of the Spirit Poster
Fruits of Love of God’s Spirit – Currency of God’s Wealth. 1 Cor.13

Firstly, we must gain an utter and complete appreciation of the identity of the Master we are called to serve, with the wealth assigned to each of us. Who is He truly? He is God’s eternal Son through whom God created all things. So, He is the Creator. (John 1:1-3) He is the Messiah, God’s emissary sent to save us as our Savior and redeem humanity from sin and death. He is the Immanuel who brings the promise of immortality. (John 3:16) Jesus holds the key to human immortality. (John 3:36) He is the Personification of bounty and everything good and rejuvenating humans have ever sought and desired. (John 1:4; 14:6) He is the pathway to the Holy Spirit who is the Personification of God’s Love, wealth, and bounty in humanity. (John 14:26; 16:7) He is the Master about whom we speak. His messianic name is “Immanuel” – the God who became human to become one of us. (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23) This is the Master we have been called to serve.

Secondly, we need to understand the Master/servant relationship dynamic. Earlier Jesus gave a master/servant scenario and said, “Suppose one of you has a servant who comes in from plowing the field or tending the sheep. Would you take his coat, set the table, and say, ‘Sit down and eat’? Wouldn’t you be more likely to say, ‘Prepare dinner; change your clothes and wait table for me until I’ve finished my coffee; then go to the kitchen and have your supper’? Does the servant get special thanks for doing what’s expected of him? It’s the same with you. When you’ve done everything expected of you, be matter-of-fact and say, ‘The work is done. What we were told to do, we did.’” (Luk.17:7-10). Do we sometimes invert the servanthood mindset and through a seditious conviction adopt the attitude of a master, and forget our place by shrinking from the responsibility of a servant?

Why did the servant think he/she could invert the master/servant relationship? A servant may think he is doing so much and increasing wealth for the Master that he thinks he ought to be the beneficiary, and not the other way round. Remember, in Luke’s account of the parable, it says, “But his subjects hated him and sent a delegation after him to say, ‘We don’t want this man to be our king’” (Luk.19:14). But he was made king anyway and sought an accounting of his investment from the servants. (Luk.19:15) So, when a servant fails to appreciate the Master/servant relationship, for whatever reason, we become unprofitable servants. So, the old adage ‘know your purpose and place’ in life rings true for all of us. If you’re still wondering who is this Master we are called to serve, then review point 1 above.

Thirdly, understand what our services as a servant really means. No matter the degree and magnitude of the service, they are not profitable to God. The Scriptures ask through Job, “Can a man be of benefit to God?” (Job 22:2). Yes, can even a wise person be helpful to Him? God does not need our aid in any way, shape, and form. His loftiest happiness and joy will not be increased through our efforts. God is utterly complete and self-sustaining in Himself and we cannot add to His all-encompassing fullness in Himself as Creator. In truth, it is us, humans, who are in need of Him – every minute, every moment, of every day. This point teaches us the importance of humility. James tells us, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up in honor” (Jam.4:10, NLT).

Jesus Vicarious Death for All Humanity John 3:16

When God handed us His Love, His wealth, His riches, to go out and invest it upon the platform of our God-given gifts and abilities, He had us in mind, not Him. He wanted us to become “Love Personalities” in our own reality as He is in His. He is the supreme Love Personality who “Fills the entire universe with Himself” (Eph.4:10). And God’s plan from the start was to create a human species in His image and likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) This is the Master we have been called to serve.

Fourthly, God’s marketplace where we invest His wealth (gold/Love) is where we cultivate and plant the Love of God through our relationship with God and our neighbors (fellow humans) as the command states. (Mar.12:30-31). What is your gift? What is your ability? Paul said, “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them” (Rom.12:6). You may be proficient with your gift physically and naturally, but Scripture tell us emphatically, “Without Love, I am nothing” (1 Cor.13:1-3). Are you a doctor, a nurse, maybe a plumber, or motor mechanic. You may even be a rugby player, or architect, or taxi driver. You may be a wood carver, a fisherman, a salesman, even an electrician. You may be a surveyor, or pilot, even a scientist, or dentist. Whatever capability one possesses, it is this God-given gift that is the trading platform in the ‘spiritual marketplace’ where the currency of Love is traded and made to grow and multiply. This is where we invest God’s wealth (Love) in our interaction with God first and second with our fellow humans. Earlier, we saw the actual currency of Love from Paul’s letter to the Corinthians. (1 Cor.13:1-13)

Composite Of Multiple Men And Women And Their Different Occupations Stock  Photo - Alamy
Collage of Different Ocuupations Identifying Platform of People’s Gift Upon Which God’s Love (wealth) is Traded and Made to Grow

Fifthly. Stewardship, it is vital to keep in mind that it is not so much the amount of gold the Master has invested in us that makes the determining difference, it is the exchange of spiritual goods and services through the Love fruits that is applied and garnered upon the platform of the person’s gift and ability in the spiritual marketplace. Paul said, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph.210). What is the spiritual marketplace? It is incumbent upon us to recognize its existence and realize this is the place we encounter God at work with humans. Primarily, it is wherever and whenever we are in situations encountering circumstances where Love is made to grow and mature, and not allowed to retrogress and decline in our relationships with God and our fellow humans.

Satan creates fear, Jesus brings God’s Love. This is the marketplace dynamism where spiritual trading takes place. Love and fear compels us to make a choice. This is where we are given the unparallel prospect to multiply and increase the master’s wealth…or decrease and weaken God’s wealth (Love) in our lives. What will it be? This means that whatever circumstance we face in life, there are two manifestations to every given situation where our gifts come into play. There is a purely physical/temporary aspect propelled by fear to a person’s gift, then there is a spiritual/eternal aspect inspired by Love. When applying our gifts and abilities, this mindset that there are always two manifestations to our abilities and gifts, must be at the forefront of our minds.

Sixthly, according to the parable of the ten virgins Jesus gave earlier, there is a way of replenishing the power of God’s Spirit and Love in the human heart and mind. (Matt.25:1-13) Jesus likens it to the metaphor of virgins filling their lamps with oil so the flame of the divine Love is constantly burning bright and not extinguised. We keep the light of God’s Love burning by eating from the Love-fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit). That is to say, the more we practice and act out the Love-fruits Paul cataloged and listed in his letter to the Corinthians, the more we are filling our lamps with oil. (1 Cor.13) The act of Love itself through its many fruits is the only practical way to fill our lamps with oil to keep Love burning brightly.

The oil is not some metaphysical substance we imagine fills our head with Love, no, the act of Love itself is what produces the oil which keeps the lamp burning. The fruits have the seeds of Love which produces more Love. We are to trade with the wealth of God’s Love upon the platform of our God-given inborn gifts and abilities, and in the process make a return for the Master. That return is the very ‘oil’ which keeps the light of God’s Love burning brightly in the world.

10 Top Parable of Ten Virgins ideas | parables, virgin, biblical art
The Metaphor of God’s Love to the Oil the 10 Virgins Constanly Kept the Light Of God’s Love Aflame and Burning

Having considered the six points mentioned above, namely: 1) Recognition of who our Master is; 2) Understanding the Master/servant relationship and not inverting its priority; 3) The servanthood humility; 4) The spiritual Marketplace; 5) Stewardship – Investing the Master’s wealth (gold); 6) Be ready by keeping the flame of Love burning. Let me ask a pertinent and all together important question for the servants to consider, and especially for the servant with one bag of gold and did nothing with His Master’s investment. Have they properly considered the six points outlined above which are vital to the Master/servant relationship?

Most especially, on entering the fifth point, where ‘the rubber meets the road’ so to speak, in which they are to directly invest their Master’s wealth (Love/gold), are they in a right mindset? Do the servants have a plan on how to weigh and consider their activity in the spiritual marketplace as they are about to trade with the Master’s wealth. Now, they are to trade by utilizing the divine currency of God’s Love in their interaction and relations with the divine and human entities. (Mar.12:30-31) From the account of Jesus’ parable, it was obvious only the two servants did, but not the third. Why? Recall, the three servants are representative of three categories of people and how they respond to investing the Master’s wealth, and doing it through the six principles we covered about Master/servant relationship.

Parable of Gold, Symbol for God’s Love and Wealth

We saw earlier that all human gifts and abilities originate from God through Christ, “In whom (Christ) are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col.2:2-3). God has formed every human being with gifts and abilities from the womb. (Psa.139:13-14) Nobody is born without divinely conferred abilities to live a purposeful life as the Creator has ordained. That is the reality of His divine sovereignty which we accept without question. As Creator God, by whose power humans and all living things draw breadth, everything is the expression of His Love, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16).

We cannot debate the issue about our gifts and abilities with the Creator. That is His prerogative as Creator who created all humanity out of His Love and for a divine purpose and goal. The Scripture declare, “For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psa.139:13-14) So, here we see God creating the live human platform upon which He, the Master, and humanity (servants), will disseminate His will through His Love.

From Jesus’ parable, two of the three servant-types responded properly to the six points outlined above. In so doing, they faced the fifth point in the right frame of mind and spirit, where they live and operate in the divine/human marketplace knowing how to utilize the currency of Love to trade and multiply the Master’s wealth (Love). The first two understood that life is always lived on two levels, two tiers, one is physical/temporal, while the other if spiritual/eternal. Based upon them, we then make choices in life.

For example, when Jesus said, “I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever” (John 6:51), it tells us that bread is not merely what we buy at the local bakery. The spiritual bread is understood and personified in His Person as our Savior. Then there is the physical/material bread, “I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna (physical bread) in the wilderness, yet they died. But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die” (John 6:48-50, italic my emphasis).

Bread, otherwise called ‘the staff of life,’ is metaphor for a person’s occupation. It is a person’s profession which he/she has spent most of life learning and honing and with which he/she has become well-versed. Jesus said, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work” (John 4:34). Yes, Jesus’ whole purpose in life, His profession, His nourishment, the food that keeps Him going is to see that the purpose for which God sent Him, is accomplished.

Humans in turn accomplish God’s purpose for their lives by receiving Jesus as Savior and Master, and through the gifts and talents conferred by divine edict trade in God’s Love. The Scripture tell about Jesus in this way, “‘The stone you builders rejected, which has become the cornerstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

I am the bread of life – House Mix
“I Am the Bread of Life”

The same goes with water. There is physical water which quenches our thirst physically, and there is spiritual water which quenches our spiritual thirst. Regarding spiritual water, Jesus said, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them. By this He meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified” (John 7:37-39). So, the Holy Spirit is spiritual water we drink to satisfy our spiritual thirst.

Two of the most basic elements in life by which humans survive and not perish, food and water (drink), carries physical and spiritual connotation and meaning. This teaches us that for just about everything in life there is always this dual expression that calls us to consider our actions, and the repercussions that precipitate them, based upon our choices and activities. We must not be myopic as to think that bread simply means getting your share of carbohydrates from the bakery and nothing more. And quenching your thirst means more than finding a river or tap with running water.

‘Bread’ (sustenance) means the primary purpose of human life is to do God’s will for us through the gifts and abilities He bestowed upon us. (1 Pet.4:10) ‘Water’ (drink) means to live by the divine Love empowered through the Spirit’s presence in us. (1 Cor.3:16) By wearing the new garment of Jesus’ resurrected life we become new personalities ourselves inspired by the Holy Spirit who supplies God’s Love. (Gal.2:20) The Spirit is the Personification of God’s Love and wealth we receive from Jesus, the Master as stated in the parable we read earlier.

John 7:37-39 (ESV) 37 On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus  stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and  drink. - ppt download

Let us take a real live situation. What is a person’s occupation? We saw a list of gifts in the fourth principle we covered above. There are always two manifestations to our abilities of which we must always be cognizant. This mindset must be at the forefront of our thinking process. However, because of our fallen state on being, we almost always look at life from a purely physical/material perspective, and ignore or are ignorant of the spiritual point of view, and follow through with our actions. In truth, because the command we must Love God first above all else, than what ought to be at the forefront of our minds, our attitude ought to be, the spiritual perspective ought to and must lead the way, then the physical/material. What is our motive for doing what we do?

This is why humans are blessed with gifts and talents in the first place, it’s always asking why am I doing this, what am I doing it for? This is the main point of the parable. You may be very proficient with your gift physically and materially, but that is not the sole meaning of the parable. It was about what your gift produced spiritually. The Bible states that without Love, “I am nothing” (1 Cor.13:2). So, for every activity we do with our gifts, there is a material manifestation and there is a spiritual manifestation. If we place the spiritual deeds first, then the material will fall into its proper place by divine providence. (Matt.6:33)

Paul told Titus, “There are many rebellious people, full of meaningless talk and deception… for they overthrow the faith of whole families, teaching what they ought not, just for the sake of making money.” (Tit.1:10-11). Yes, these people spurn authority, teaching principles which contravene God’s foundation for living based upon Love, for the sake of dishonest gain through the spirit of fear. A person may be a surveyor, pilot, scientist, or dentist, botanist or nurse, what is the goal of your gift? Is it just a profession, so you could get a salary at the end of the day or week? It is not wrong to charge for the service of your talent, as long as you do not leave the vital first things undone. (1 Cor.13:1) We are careful not to put the cart before the horse, so to speak. (Mat.6:33) A fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay is a biblically sound fiscal principle. Paul tell Timothy, “The worker is worthy of his wages” (1 Tim.5:18).

But your gift is lifted up above the mundane, above the physical/material level, way up the spiritual and divine plane beyond where it is performed for God’s Love, and out of God’s Love. It is what’s in our heart, our motive, which counts. And when done out of Love, we are shining the light of His glory (Love). Listen to John’s arresting statement, “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” (1 John 4:16, NLT).

Human Gifts and Talents Divinely Conferred By God the Creator

Yes, we have known and tasted God’s Love through His Son, who has given passage for the Spirit, the power of God’s Love, to come and reside in our hearts. ”Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple, and the Spirit of God dwells in you?” Paul asked pointedly (1 Cor.3:16). We have seen the currency of God’s Love through the fruits of the Spirit with which to trade upon the platform of our gifts in the spiritual marketplace. (1 Cor.13).

As long as we live in this fallen age of Satan’s dominion, we will encounter the spirit of fear, the enemy of God’s Love. Since the fruits of Love and the fruits of fear are opposing spiritual forces, it creates friction and dynamism whereby human life comes with its tests and trials in all seasons. We have heard about people who arm themselves with potentially deadly firearms and turn it into weapons of destruction, such as the deadly school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, USA. The answer to such a situation, or for that matter, all different kinds of such damaging circumstance, can be found in Jesus’ parable of the ‘bags of gold.’ Through trials and tests we are given to choose between the physical and mundane and the spiritual and divine upon the platform of our gifts and talents. This is the marketplace dynamism where spiritual trading takes place. This is where we are given the unparallel prospect to multiply and increase the master’s wealth…or decrease and weaken God’s wealth (Love) in our lives. What will it be?

Listen, our works no matter the magnitude or importance does not multiply to, nor is profitable for God. “Can a man be of benefit to God?” Job asked (Job 22:2). He does not need our help, and His happiness and wellbeing will not be increased by our efforts. Paul told the Greeks, “‘For in Him we live and move and have our being’” (Act.17:28). By increasing His wealth (Love) He had us in mind, not Him. He lacks nothing, for He is complete in His infinite Love. The grace to do God’s will for our lives comes from Him only, and all the praise of that will be due to Him. If He rewards us, it will be matter of unmerited favor on His part.

In Place of Love, Satan Sows the Seeds and Fruits of Fear

Our best services are mingled with faults and imperfections. We come short of His glory. (Rom.3:23) We do not serve Him as sincerely, and cheerfully, and faithfully as we ought; we are far, very far from the example of our Savior; and if we are saved and rewarded, it will be because God will be merciful to our unrighteousness, and will not avenge our iniquities but remember them no more. (Heb. 8:12) Hence, God imputes Jesus’ perfect messianic life upon us for our justification and salvation, for Paul 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). Yes, He made it possible for humanity to appear befor the ‘mercy seat’ of Almighty God to make our pleas and suppication in time of needs and failings.

What ought our attitude be towards our work as servants? Jesus said, “So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’” (Luk.17:10). Yes, the servants who made one hundred percent return on the Master’s wealth simply say, “We have done that which is our duty.” Humans perform their tasks as servants in the spirit of humility, fully convicted of God’s promise, “However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who Love Him” (1 Cor.2:9).

However, the person given the one bag of gold did nothing …Can we see that gifts are conferred foremost for the purpose of building the Master’s spiritual wealth (Love/gold)? Apparently, the third servant who was given one bag of gold did not appreciate this all-important aspect of his/her life. He did not appreciate the Master/servant dynamic, much less the six principles of servanthood. There is another kind of mineral which looks like gold, but is not. It is call “fool’s gold.” The one-talent servant told his Master, “Here is what belongs to you” and found no time to invest the Master’s gold (Love) apportioned him. (Matt.25:25). Instead, he invested in “fools gold.” “Fool’s gold” is reaped from the fruit of fear and selfishness, not God’s outgoing Love. It is reaped from the fruit of human self-centeredness, greed, sin and evil. It will serve us well to recognize the difference, and not live foolishly but as true profitable servants of our Master.

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.

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, or divisions one may espouse – 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, 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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee (Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26Matt.28:19John 14:101616:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God as a Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-201 Pet.1:22 Thess.2:132 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2Eph.5:23-2732Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity – One in Three, Three in One (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

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

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

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LOVING GOD COMPLETELY, BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings once more, Friends! The most important command in the Bible is about the human Love for God. God gave humanity the most important command when Jesus said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mar.12:30). In the book of Exodus, God told Israel, “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exo.20:3). In other words, we are to be Loving God unquestionably above all else. Let us get one thing straight right off the bat, without giving a second thought, in our fallen state of existence in sin, it is not possible for humans to keep this command. The Bible states, “Can anyone really say that his conscience is clear, that he has gotten rid of his sin?” (Pro.20:9, GNT). For emphasis, “No one in this world always does right” (Eccl.7:20, CEV)

Realizing we are living through devastating times with the Russia/Ukraine conflict and the threat of a wider escalation, the Covid-19 pandemic, the unprecedented insurrection in the US Capitol, the extraordinary effect of climate change and warming of the planet, the loss of arctic ice and glacial melt, the rising sea levels and its effect upon the most vulnerable peoples and nations, the increase in droughts and natural disasters like hurricanes and flooding, higher wildlife extinction rates, human conflicts over political aspirations, the rich getting richer and the poor poorer, racial animosity and hatred, violence and abuse in society, the disintegration of the family unit as the backbone of a healthy social order, and we could go on and fill a book about all the pressing issues facing humanity today.

Yet, the answer to all our human dilemma may not be as far-fetched as we imagine. This is what the Bible quotes God as saying, or more precisely promising, His human creation, “The Lord says, “I will rescue those who Love Me. I will protect those who trust in My Name. When they call on Me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them My salvation” (Psa.91:14-16, NLT). Here, we read about God promising to rescue humanity, and He tells us where it must begin: LOVE! The passage states, “I will rescue those who Love Me. I will protect those who trust in My Name. When they call on Me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them.” Yes, it is about Love. But do we Love God enough to move Him to come to our aid?

Does God love everyone? Yes and no. – Knox Church (EPC)
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength”

The Love command states, “Love Him with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength?” Is this possible at all? We can live pretentious or fake lives, but God knows our motives and heart, saying, “But I, the LORD, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve” (Jer.17:10, NLT).

“I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve…” That is sensational, that just squash all our hopes, for who can be justified before God? Paul said this about all mankind, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom.3:23). The “glory of God” simply means who and what God is in His holy divine Being of Love. (Luk.1:49) God’s holiness is immeasurable because His Love is unfathomable. (1 John 4:8; Psa.111:9) So, if in our depraved state of existence, we fall short of His glory and Love, how can we possibly Love God who is all holy in His Love?  

Yes, why did God give mankind a command that humans could not possibly follow in the first instance? But that is exactly the point, the command was given to be followed, not disobeyed. Doesn’t anyone realize, most of all God Himself, that as long as humans exist in their fallen state of existence inherited from Adam it is not possible for humans to Love God as He would expect?

Or, is it possible that God was echoing a harmonious relationship which once existed with humanity from the beginning at human creation before the fall? Adam and Eve were created in God’s likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) That means, to exist in God’s Love likeness and image. So, from the start, our first parents lived in an environment of Love, freedom, grace and harmony in the Garden of Eden. So, what happened to that Loving existence between God and our first parents (humanity)?

Yes, why would God issue the Love commandment which once was? In my post last month (“The Cross”: http://bulamanriver.net/29118), I mentioned that according to ancient patristic writings, in creating Adam from the dust of the ground, God clothed them in ‘glorious garments’ which gave them a form of human immortality. God could not have subjected our first parents to death in any way, shape, and form, because God created them according to His likeness, and that likeness is life everlasting. (Gen.1:26-27; Gen.5:1) Death was alien to and never part of God’s image.

Paul Asserts We are Clothed in the Garment of Jesus Christ Today, For No Sin Has power over Him, Unlike Adam’s Garment in Eden. For Jesus Is God’s Eternal High Priest who Consecrates Us Before the Father (Gal.3:27; Rom.13:14; Heb.4:14-16; 5:1, 6).

The verbal evidence and undertone from the Genesis creation account show that Adam was created to reflect God in every sense of His divine substance (eternity), and nature (Love) (Gen.1:26-27; Isa.40:28-31; Job 9:32; 1 John 4:8) God nowhere states that He created our first parents and subjected them to death, in truth the opposite was true. Adam was created in God’s eternal likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) But they were warned about death, but never had the notion of what it was, much less its deteriorating physical reality. (Gen.2:17) It was not until they disobeyed and sinned against God by eating the forbidden fruit that death came into play. For Scriptures tell us, “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom.6:23). So, the Scripture holds out hope for humanity in Christ, despite our state of alienation through Adam’s fall.

The glorious garment also gave them the power of the divine Love to exist with God in Eden, the Garden of God. However, the glorious garment had a weakness, it was powerless in the face of sin. Consequently, when our parents disobeyed God and ate the forbidden fruit, their garment vanished instantly. What happened next was they saw and realized they were ‘naked.’ (Gen.3:7) So, true nakedness is spiritual, not physical. General Douglas McArthur insightfully said, “It must be of the spirit if we are to save the flesh.”

The garment that gave them a form of immortality disappeared and was no more. They were now mere mortals, at which point God uttered those most foreboding words, not before, “For you were made from dust, and to dust you will return” (Gen.3:19). It was then that ‘time’ as we know it, with its natural mobilty, began its countdown for our now mortal parents. Today, we are six to seven thousand years removed from that fateful day when Adam’s glorious garment had vanished due to sin, and he started living life as pure mortal human being, subject to death.

1 John 4:16-19 God is love! Whoever lives in love lives in God. And God in  them.

Not only did they lose their ‘glorious garment’ but most importantly they lost the ‘miraculous life’ they had known and experienced in Eden since their creation. To exist in the midst of God’s Love is to experience life in the innermost being of the divine grace which erupts in miraculous manifestation. But now, God says, “By the sweat of your brow will you have food to eat until you return to the ground from which you were made” (Gen.3:19)

Yes, the miraculous life was no more for they were expelled from Eden, and had to labor for a living, and by extension humanity has been doing so ever since. In the previous life in Eden, they were given to manage the Garden estate of Eden which God had planted for them. (Gen.2:15) It had wild life and many other livestock and life forms with ‘helpers’ to maintain the estate. (Gen.2:19) So, it was no ordinary backyard garden or orchard.

Before their banishment from Eden, God had to first perform a most vital act of Love. God clothed Adam and Eve in cloaks of animal skin to cover the shame of their nakedness. The animal skin depicted animal life which were slain for ‘sacrificial’ reasons to make atonement for Adam’s wrongs. Prior to this, death was unknown and non-existent in Eden, for the eternal God was the life of Eden. Eden was the picture of life in the pure everlasting sense of the word.

Death was and still is anathema to God. Death stands as affront to God, and complete contrast with who God is and what He stands for. However, this death through the demise of animals pictured what God sadly had to, and with heavy but faithful heart, in anticipation of a future eventuality – the offering of His only Son, the promised Messiah, to sacrifice and atone for and cover the spiritual nakedness (sins) of mankind as a whole. (1 Cor.15:45-49; John 3:16-17). To condone death, and beyond everything, the death of His Son, spells the grandeur of God’s immense Love for humanity.

“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 His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him” (John 3:16-17).

So, we see that a Loving divine relationship with God was very much part of human life and experience through our first parents. To assume the fall of Adam and Eve occurred immediately after their creation, as commonly postulated, and they never did tasted nor experienced God’s deepest, wholesome and wholehearted Love, would presume the enemy (Satan) is mightier than the Creator, which would be absurd and sacrileges to say the least. (Isa.45:21-24; Isa.44:8)

No, nothing could be further from the truth, for our first parents were sustained in God’s immeasurable Love and affectionate care for an indeterminable while living the miraculous life in Eden. Then eternity later (for ‘time’ was meaningless and irrelevant), in that fateful moment of weakness through Satanic deception, they sinned. (Gen.3:1-6, 11, 23)

Since they had a form of immortality through their God-given glorious gament, time was immaterial in their Edenic existence. Only after sinning, and the subsequent vanishing of the celestial garment, did they fully realized the consequence of their action, and their now susceptible mortality. For now, they experienced how time and space had suddenly compressed upon them like some strange bodily sensation. They now could feel grief, pain, and even bleed. For now, the miraculous life of Eden was all but lost and would await the fulfillment of God’s promise of the Messiah, the second Adam, to bring restitution. (1 Cor.15:45-49) Banishment from Eden was to be their cursed future existing under satanic influence, in the world outside the confines of Eden. (Gen.3:1-6, 22-23; 2 Cor.4:4)

Adam and Eve Disobeyed God | Children's Bible Lessons
Adam & Eve Departing Eden Where They Existed in The Glory of God’s Light of Love and Immortality

When Jesus appeared on the scene about four millennia later, His mission was to reconstitute something important which was part of humanity in the Garden of Eden before the fall – God’s Love and immortality! Jesus was baptized in the River Jordan by John the Baptist, then He inaugurated the gift of the Holy Spirit, the very Personification of divine Love. The Holy Spirit is the the third Person of the Tri-Personal God (Trinity) and is the power and presence of God’s Love in humanity. (Matt.28:18-20)

In Eden, Adam and Eve were empowered by the Holy Spirit, and God’s Love, as symbolized through the “Tree of Life.” They ate of the fruits of the Tree of Life which empowered them with God’s Love and the glorious garment which clothed and covered them with a form of immortality. It was God’s Spirit in them that gave them the power to Love God. (2 Tim.1:7) The fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit) is available to humanity today: you can read about it at my post: “Gifts Are Magnets of the Love Personality” at: http://bulamanriver.net/27435). 

In the post you will read about the fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit) which we feed upon every day in life’s human journey upon earth. (You can read about the fruits of God’s Spirit (Love) in the appendix below). Humans must feed and feast upon the Spirit’s Love-fruits who resides in the hearts of humans to give them spiritual energy to defeat sin and be empowered to relate with the Creator and our fellow humans in Love. (1 Cor.13:1-13; 1 Cor.3:16; Mar.12:30-31)

If we are not being sustained in the Spirit by imbibing of the fruits of the Tree of Life, it could be said as a situation of dereliction on our part. And sadly, this was so with our parents in Eden. Our parent’s wrong was more a sin of omission than we realize. They stood under and fed off the tree of the forbidden fruit, and failed to eat of the fruits of the Tree of Life.

The devil will deceive and tempt us to abstain from feeding ourselves of the Love-fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit), and feed upon the tree of human knowledge of good and evil which promotes the life of autonomy from God. So, Love is not just God’s name (noun), it defines His activity in His creation as seen through the Spirit’s Love-fruits (verb), and be empowered to relate with God in Love.

Tree of Life | Animal Kingdom Attractions | Walt Disney World Resort
The Tree of Life

Paul said this about what Jesus our Savior did for humanity, “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ” (Gal.3:27). Paul is saying that when we affirm our belief in Jesus as personal Savior and are baptized (a ritual ceremony of an outward sign of inward belief and change), we are actually putting on and being clothed in a spiritual garment, and that Garment is none other than Jesus Christ. Paul added, “Instead, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom.13:14).

Yes, note the new Glorious Garment is none other than Jesus Christ Himself. If we are clothed in Christ Himself, then we already possess immortality, for He is the eternal Son within the Tri-Personal Godhead (Trinity), and He immortalized our humanity through His resurrection and ascension. Paul uttered the most profound truth of this mystery and our reality in Christ, saying, “For He (God) raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6, NLT). Isaiah prophesied saying, “I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of His righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels” (Isa.61:10; also Rev.21:1-5).

This is not the glorious garment of the first Adam that was powerless in the face of sin, but the true Glorious Gament of Jesus Himself who has defeated sin and brought true immortality to humanity. (Gen.3:6-7; John 5:21; Rom.8:11; Act.2:24; Rev.3:18; Rom.6:4) Yes, and side by side with the Garment of Jesus, the miraculous life is again the privilige to live as saved humans because of the Holy Spirit He has inaugutated on Pentecost.

Yes, today in this mortal existence we have eternal life in each of us living the miraculous life because we are clothed in Christ. That’s to say, Christ lives and walks in us, as Paul assures the Galaltians, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who Loved me and gave Himself for me” (Gal.2:20). Thereby, we are empowered by Love through the Spirit (Love) to commune with God. Daily, He mediates for mankind before the Almighty Father in the prayer of praise, grace, blessing and invocation. He taught us to pray for conciliation, “Forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us” (Matt.6:12, NLT).

The Scriptures tell us, “The Father Loves the Son and has placed everything in His hands. 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 3:36; 6:47). The Garment of Jesus Himself can’t be compared to Adam’s glorious garment which was powerless and vanished in the face of sin. (Gen.3:6-7; Rev.3:18; Gal.2:20; Rom.6:4; Heb.4:15)

It is relevant to recount the parable of the wedding banquet as told by Jesus, “The kingdom of heaven is like a King who prepared a wedding banquet for His Son.” The custom in those days was for the one hosting the wedding feast—in this case, the king—to provide garments for the wedding guests. The King had “noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless. Then the King told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness” (Matt.22:11-13). The wedding garment is metaphor for being clothed in the Garment of Jesus Christ, supplied by the Father. Jesus is the Author and Finisher of our faith, and wellspring of immortality. (John 3:36)

Shadows in Eden: Coats of Skins
Adam & Eve Banished from Eden in Coats of Skin Garment

When Adam was banished from Eden, he was cut-off from the Holy Spirit (third Person of the Tri-Personal Godhead – Trinity) who was symbolized in the Tree of Life. (Gen.3:21-24) Without the Holy Spirit (Tree of Life) they were barren of the divine Love which fueled and empowered their relationship with God. It was not until the second Adam, Jesus Christ, appeared almost four thousand years later, that He reintroduced the Holy Spirit to humanity at His baptism in the Jordan. (Luk.24:49)

The Bible records Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist in this way, “As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I Love; with Him I am well pleased.” (Matt.3:16-17). Then on the Day of Pentecost, the Spirit was poured out upon the disciples and all of believing mankind as a whole. (Act.2:1-4; 38)

Today, humans can receive the divine Love which will give them the power to Love God. But they must receive Jesus as Savior to cleanse them spiritually of all sin, thus giving the Spirit (Love) passage to enter the human heart through Jesus’ mediation thus making His (Spirit’s) abode in human life possible. (1 Cor.6:19) This is a life of living faith in Jesus finished work of saving mankind.

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The Resurrection to Immortality Inaugurated by Jesus, Being Adorned in His Garment Through His own Resurrection and Ascension

Yes, the Holy Spirit is the very life of God Himself for He proceeds from the inner communion of the Father and the Son. He is the bond of Love in the Tri-Personal Being of God (Trinity). The last time when the Spirit communed with mankind in a real sense was in Eden with our first parents. Now, the Father reintroduces Him to mankind through His Son. It is in the Holy Spirit that humans have communion with the Father through Jesus Christ, the Messiah and second Adam. (1 Cor. 15:45-49) It is in the empowerment of this triune movement of God’s Tri-Personal Being that humans are given the power of Love, and the power to Love. We partake of the very life and light and Love which God is. That is what Christians believe and live by. (1 John 1:3; John 17:3, 21)

And this is where the relationship of Love with the divine Godhead (Trinity) starts. Some may imagine that God’s Love Command tells them God is self-absorbed and egomaniacal. Nothing could be further from the truth. For by giving us the Command to Love Him completely and totally, He was setting His sight upon us, not Himself. God, in His Love, lacks nothing. He does not need humanity to exist or fill any need, but mankind needs Him to restore us as a species with Love and immortality and dwell eternally in His Love.

Love is wholeness of and in itself and is never wanting nor incomplete, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8). Love only knows how to give for He is the reservoir of bounty and abundance as the Creator of all life both seen and unseen. The vast universe, the earth and everything in it, proceeded from the utterance of His words. He says, “If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world is mine, and all that is in it” (Psa.50:12). He goes on, “The silver is mine and the gold is mine,’ declares the Lord Almighty” (Hag.2:8).

He is infinitely generous, and wants nothing less for mankind. The Love Command was God’s way of enabling humans to Love themselves impartially and not love with the human self-centered and egotistical heart. When we Love God completely and unreservedly in the Spirit’s power, He infuses and envelopes us in His unspeakable joy. Joy comes from a place of discovery of a person’s true celestial identity with and in the divine will and Love. So, my friends, let us take His Love command in its truest and purest form, as John attests, “And we have come to know and to believe the Love that God has for us. God is Love, and the one who remains in Love remains in God, and God remains in him” (1 John 4:16).

Holy Spirit Inaugurated Through Jesus

Now that the Holy Spirit is made to reenter and reside in the saved heart of mankind made possible through Jesus’ messianic mediation. Paul tells us, “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” (1 Cor.6:19, NLT). Paul said, “You were bought with a price [you were actually purchased with the precious blood of Jesus and made His own]. So then, honor and glorify God with your body” 1 Cor.6:20, Amplified Bible). Through the Holy Spirit, God says of humanity, “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). This is how the Love relationship (rather than the ‘Love Command’ in its ineffectual legalistic form) with the divine will is forged and made to move ahead in human reality.

I will close with a word of encouragement from John, “God is Love. Whoever lives in Love lives in God, and God in them” (1 John 4:16). Keep in mind, this is a life of faith, faith in the miraculous life where the Spirit manifests the divine Love in humanity. The Scripture says, “For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose” (Phi.2:13).

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 is our hope and 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 Immanuel 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, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for the holy God, the Creator’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.”

PRAYING HANDS  Catholic picture  print image 1
Prayer is A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father

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 listed in our archives that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee  (Your Servant In Christ)

Appendix: *The “Love-Fruits of the Holy Spirit:” *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness,  *the fruit of modesty (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; also Gal. 5:22-23Rom. 12:9-21).

**”Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. He is also clothed in Freedom. For the three Persons of the Trinity are three distinct and free Persons in the triune Godhead. Love and Freedom by nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being possessing freedom.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting divine relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam, like God is in His Triunity. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness (Trinity), not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God through Christ once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God through Christ, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the one Triunity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. (Matt.28:18-20) They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam, for she came out of Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

The Christian Faith As Spoken In the Nicene Creed

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

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“THE CROSS” BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings again Friends! Wherever you are in the far-flung corners of the world, may the peace of Easter be with you and your loved ones. Our heart goes out to the many men, women, and especially children, who are experiencing terrible suffering in central Europe, most especially in Ukraine, and other less known parts of the world.

cross on hill tattoo - Clip Art Library
The Cross: He Has Risen

“He isn’t here! He has risen from the dead, just as He said would happen. Come, see where His body was lying.” (Matthew 28:6). Those are the most impactful words in the Christian faith, for the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the cornerstone of Christianity. Even though Jesus told His disciples of His impending death and resurrection, they found it too incredulous to be believed. The Gospel of Luke tells us Jesus’ conversation with the disciples, “Jesus took the Twelve aside and told them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written by the prophets about the Son of Man will be fulfilled. He will be delivered over to the Gentiles. They will mock Him, insult Him and spit on Him; they will flog Him and kill Him. On the third day He will rise again. The disciples did not understand any of this. Its meaning was hidden from them, and they did not know what He was talking about” (Luk.18:31-34). Jesus predicted His death three times as the Gospel of Mark attests. (Mar. 8:31; 9:31; and 10:32–34).

On another occasion He spoke about it metaphorically, comparing His life to a temple, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days” (John 2:19; Matt.26:61; 27:40; Mar.14:58) His hearers thought He was talking of the physical temple, not realizing He was making reference to Himself. (1 Cor.3:16) Yet again, He said this about His life, “No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of My own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from My Father” (John 10:18). As the second Person of the Tri-Personal God (Trinity), Jesus possessed both human/divine nature in Himself upon His human birth. Athanasius of Alexandria said, “Nothing except the Resurrection of Jesus Christ is a greater miracle or wonder in human history. God becoming flesh in human history is the greatest marvel.”

The prophet Isaiah gave His messianic name, Immanuel, which means “God with us” (Isa 7:14; Matt.1:23). By taking our fallen humanity upon Himself in the incarnation, He crucified our once sin-conditioned and rebellious humanity upon His cross, and glorified it in His resurrection and ascension once for all time.

 “He Is Risen!” Artist Impression of Resurrection of Jesus (Wiki Commons)

When they heard from others that Jesus had indeed risen, it left them speechless. When He miraculously appeared before them, they were left gasping for breath. Jesus told one doubting disciple, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet believed” (John 20:29). You can read the inspiring account of Jesus’ resurrection at Matthew 28:1-10. The resurrection responds to the ancient quest for answers to the question of life, death, and the afterlife. Ancient philosophers, theologians, and sages have long sought to unlock the answers to the afterlife.

Yes, the Christian life is a life of living faith. Paul stated the anchor upon which the Christian faith is centered and upon which it revolves: “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins” (1 Cor.15:17). Indeed, powerful words concerning the Christian faith. The Cross would be meaningless if Jesus had not risen. The resurrection is the foundation upon which the Christian faith is built. Therefore, the very essence of freedom is founded upon faith in Christ and His work of Messiah. We cannot believe the Cross (death of Jesus Christ) and deny His resurrection. They are both one and the same expression of His Messiahship.

His life and all the prophecies concerning His calling as the Messiah would have all been fiction, a fabrication, if His resurrection from the dead had not happened for real. If it were not for the resurrection, mankind’s fate would have ended in the grave and no further. Mankind’s future of receiving the divine gift of immortality and continue as an everlasting species created in God’s eternal likeness would not be possible. (Gen.1:26-27, 5:1; Eph.4:24; John 3:16)

And to comprehensively secure the work of His Messiahship, we see the final act of Jesus’ ascension into heaven where He returns to the Father and is made to sit at His right hand as humanity’s High Priest forever. (Act.1:9-10; Heb.4.14-16) As our glorified human/divine High Priest, what Jesus did as Messiah as the Immanuel in His earthly life and ministry had not stopped at the Cross when He died.

In truth, He continues the work of Messiah, but now in His resurrected/ascended High Priestly role in heaven today where He forever mediates on humanity’s behalf before Almighty God, our heavenly Father. And Paul expresses this mind blowing truth of our reality in Christ, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6).

Jesus Christ, Our High Priest in heaven today where He forever Mediates on Humanity’s behalf Before Almighty God, our Heavenly Father

Did you see that? Paul says when humans are baptized, we affirm a certain reality to our faith in Jesus’ death, resurrection, and ascension, that is, we have been made to also ascend with Him when He ascended back to His Father in heaven. (Eph.2:6-7) Human believers are always present with Jesus in His never-ending mediation as our eternal High Priest keeping mankind in right standing with God forever. For the Scriptures say, “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.4:15-16).

God tells us He is the source of life – life originates and exudes from His divine Trinitarian Being. He is the fountain and spring of life. (Gen.2:7; 1 Sam.2:6; Act.17:25) If that is so, how and where did death originate and enter human existence which made the resurrection to immortal life necessary? The answer is the subject of our post today, “The Cross.” The Cross is the symbol of reconciliation and peace with the holy God from whom eternal life is received as a gift. (John 3:16-17)

Death was imposed upon humanity as a penalty for sin which began in the Garden of Eden. (Gen.3:1-6; 11) The Bible categorically states, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom.6:23). When Adam and Eve sinned by eating the forbidden fruit, sin entered our human existence, and death followed. God told our first parents, “you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die” (Gen.2:17). Satan deceived them and they disobeyed. Then God asked our first parents, “Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” (Gen.3:11).

Since death could result only from sin, God said to our first parents, “For dust you are, and to dust you shall return” (Gen.3:19). This could not have been uttered before they sinned, but only after sin entered their lives. If death followed Adam’s disobedience, then what was Adams’s makeup and composition before he sinned? It is clear God made him from the dust of the earth. (Gen.2:7) But was he subject to death from his creation, before he sinned?

Adam & Eve in the Garden of Eden, Covered in ‘Garment’ God Had Adorned Them Which Gave Them a Form of Human Immortality

When God created Adam, it would have been contrary to His Love nature and who He is to have subjected him and his wife to death in any way, shape, and form. The Scripture tell us God created humanity in His image and likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) God’s likeness and image is eternal life…death is anathema to the everlasting God and non-existent in His divine realm. (Lam.5:19; Psa.9:7; Exo.15:18; Psa.66:7) The totality of the environment in Eden was wrapped up in one element which defines who God IS: life, life, and life without end! Everlasting life that’s manifested in His divine nature of Love and Freedom. Death is the exact antithesis of who God is in substance and reality in His divine nature.

Adam had life to its fullest and broadest divine expression that a human can experience at the highest physical level ever possible! Adam existed in God’s presence, the Source of both spiritual and physical life. Adam did not know what death was, it had no meaning with him, although he was warned of it. (Gen.2:17)

It is said of the Patristic writers that Eve and Adam lost “something physically real” namely, the glorious garments with which God had clothed them in Paradise. After their fall, they were unrobed and realized their “nakedness” through the loss of this glorious garment. (Gen.3:7) Although Adam was created from the earth, the glorious garment provided them a form of human immortality reflecting God’s “eternal image,” for it was impossible for the Creator to have created and subjected them to death. God is the total embodiment of life in its fullest expression, without a hint of death, even on a physical mortal level as Adam existed in Eden.

Nevertheless, Adam’s glorious garment had a weakness – it was powerless in the face of sin. When confronted with sin, Adam’s garment vanished. (Gen.3:7) It was a physical form of immortality nonetheless, with a vital caveat they were warned about – death. (Gen.2:17) But as we shall see, God has promised to bless and clothe humanity in another garment which will bring true immortality which no sin has power over.

So, with sin having entered Eden through disobedience, the dark cloud of death had cast its dark shadow over them, and it was not possible for death to co-exist with life in Eden. So, it was only after sin entered and severed the divine/human Love relationship, that God uttered, “For dust you are, and to dust you shall return,” not before, for “the wages of sin is death” (Gen.3:19; also Rom.6:23). Paul echos this original Adamic decree, saying, “It is destined for people to die once, and after this comes judgment” (Heb.9:27).

Athanasius of Alexandria (c. 296–298 – 2 May 373) contends Eve and Adam were not created either immortal or perfect. They needed to prove themselves – this is part of what many of the church fathers understood as having free will to mean. We are left to postulate as to what exactly was the pre-fallen state of existence of Adam and Eve? How long did this pre-fallen condition last – how long did they live in Paradise before their banishment from Eden?

The Genesis account of creation and the fall of man was very brief and dearth of detail, thereby patristic writers have made expositions and perspectives which convey vital aspects of the creation account and the fall of man. By inference, nuance and undertone, we can conclude assuredly that since our first parents was created to reflect God’s eternal likeness in His divine Love from the start, that they did remain true to their divine Love image for some extended period of ‘time’ prior to the fall. (Gen.1:26-27)

It is relevant to keep in mind that ‘time’ was immaterial as long as they were adorned in the glorious garment which equipped them with a form of human immortality in which they were sustained. It was only after they sinned that their glorious garment vanished and realized they were ‘naked.’ They became mere mortals and the clock of time began its countdown for them and humanity. (Gen.3:7) Today, according to the passage of ‘time,’ historical and documentary records, archeology and other evidence, we are about six to seven thousand years removed from that world-shattering and calamitous event of Adam’s fall.

Prior to this, they ate from the Tree of Life which sustained them in God’s Love and the glorious garment with which God covered them. If we assume the fall occurred immediately after their creation, as is commonly postulated, that would presume the enemy (Satan) is mightier than the Creator, which would be absurd and sacrileges to say the least. (Isa.45:21-24; Isa.44:8) No, our first parents were sustained in God’s image and Love-likeness for a very long while before their eventual fall.

Eden's two trees: Paths of life and death (Genesis 2–3) – Hallel Fellowship

Eden was God’s paradisal garden empowered in the Spirit’s energized cocoon-like shielded environment where our first parents lived sheltered lives in God’s Love and safeguarded them from the inhospitable external physical world. Later, due to their sin of disobedience, they were banished to live in it. Eden was no backyard orchard, but was God’s gift to and His place of dwelling with Adam and Eve and humanity. In it, God taught them right from wrong through ‘the tree of the knowledge of good and evil,’ and guided and sustained them in His Love and way of life through ‘the tree of life.’ (Gen.2:8-9)

Over a long period of ‘time’ they had assumed enormous ‘human knowledge and intellect’ through the ‘the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.’ The ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil’ was not an evil, sinful tree. It increased our parents fund of knowledge of good and evil. Be that as it may, it was human knowledge and basically emboldens the human spirit of self-reliance instead of divine-reliance, which the devil exploited. (Prov.14:12; Gen.3:1, 6-7) Then there was the ‘tree of life’ which taught them God’s way of life, and where they received the Spirit’s (Love) energy and true life, most importantly divine-reliance. God tested their freewill (freedom) to choose between the two trees.

In fact, there was only one tree they were commanded to stay away and not eat. They had liberty to eat from many other trees. (Gen.2:16-17) The tree of good and evil represented human knowledge, much like how humans acquire knowledge today, then through experience and experimentation receive and increase human understanding. The drawback was and still is, it stoked the spirit of self-reliance as harbinger of the autonomous life independent from God. (Prov.16:25) And that is exactly how the devil tempted our first parents in Eden.

On the other hand, the ‘tree of life,’ represented the Love of God, and life of interdependence and relationship with the divine will. We must understand all forms of bondage and slavery results from living automously apart from God promoted by Satan by way of his catastrophic original sin. (Isa.14:12-14)

The wisdom we draw from the two trees is we can make our human plans, but in the end it is God who determines our steps towards genuine freedom and success. So, we yield to the divine will in all our human efforts, rather than the human self-will as end in itself that becomes a god we submit to in place of God’s Loving will. God’s Love, as represented in the ‘tree of life,’ leads to freedom, interrelationships, goodwill, and will never promote slavery and bondage in any shape or form. (Isa.61:1-2Luk.4:18)

We saw that the glorious garment with which God had clothed our first parents was the source of the form of human immortality they possessed in Eden. After they disobeyed and sinned by eating the forbidden fruit, their celestial garment spontaneously vanished. Suddenly they saw and realized their nakedness. Yes, their “nakedness” revealed a change they never knew nor experienced before, now they were mere mortals and subject to deterioration and eventual death as God had warned. (Gen.2:17, 3:19)

The glorious garment which sustained them with a form of immortality had disappearedon by reason of sin’s power over it. In the divine Edenic enviroment where God’s everlasting presence existed with our first parents, “nakedness” means to be stripped off the glorious garment which sustained them in God’s presence. All their needs and wants, both spiritual and mortal, were supplied through the tree of life and the glorious garment which sustained them immortally, which was subject to the mercy of sin’s power.

God clothed them with the garment of Animal Skin in place of the ‘Glorious Garment’ to Depict the Substitutional sacrifice which Moses Instituted in Israel to Picture Jesus’ ultimate Sacrifice so Humanity is Spared from the Penalty of Sin and Death.

Then God shared the promise of the Messiah’s coming with our first parents, but directed it as a prophetic statement of intent of good over evil, right over wrong, uprightness over wickedness, at the serpent (Satan) saying, “I’m declaring war between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers. He’ll wound your head, you’ll wound His heel” (Gen.3:15, MSG). This was the first prophecy of the coming of the Messiah and Savior. Not only is this a prophecy of Jesus’ birth, but it is a prophecy of His work, His life, His Cross, His resurrection and ascension.

By saying, “He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel,” God is declaring and proclaiming the good news of the defeat of Satan’s evil plan for mankind at the hands of Jesus His Son, our Savior, and Redeemer, and embrace us as His Loving children. This was the first mention to our first parents and humanity of God’s plan of redemption. The mission of Jesus as humanity’s Savior was to restore mankind to his predestined and celestially ordained place in God’s divine plan that was lost in Eden, and much, much more, as we shall see the role of the Messiah, the second Adam played out. (1 Cor.15:45-49)

In promising the coming of the Messiah and prior to their banishment from Eden, God clothed them with the garment of animal skin to cover the shame of their nakedness. (Gen.3:21) So, the Cross and the Gospel of Jesus Christ was first preached to Adam and Eve, humanity’s first parents. Up to now, Eden had never known death, for God’s divine existence was the life and environment of Eden. Death is anathema to God. However, after their fall (sin/nakedness) the garment of animal skin tells of the death of an animal or two in order to make garments to cover our parent’s nakedness.

Artist Impression of Jesus Defeating Satan in the Temptation and Bring Redemption to Adam’s Fall, and Dying Upon His Cross as Final Act of Victory and Freedom

We realize that Eden was the most beautiful and miraculous place upon earth. Eden was no ordinary backyard garden, all kinds of life forms existed in it. God had brought the animals and life forms before Adam so he would name them, “Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name” (Gen.2:19). It showed that these life forms possessed a pet-like existence with Adam and Eve in Eden. These life forms in Eden were neither wild nor ferocious, but were gentle, benign, and responsive to human touch and cognizance.

The animal skin conveys to us that the life of animals were slained and ‘sacrificed’ to symbolize the future work of restitution of the prophesied Messiah necessary to save and cover the sin (nakedness) of all mankind. It was to picture the substitutional sacrificial system Moses would later institute in Israel to picture the future Messiah and His sacrificial death to atone for humanity’s sins and be spared from the ensuing death penalty and be adorned with godly life. (Rom.6:23; Gen.2:17)

The ‘glorious garment’ that had furnished their every need and want both spiritual and mortal in Eden, was no more. Now, God said, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return” (Gen.3:19). They were banished to live outside Eden where the miraculous life they had always known and experienced had disappeared along with the sheltered life in Eden. (Gen.3:24) Beyond Eden they now had to work and earn their living. The miraculous life of Eden was lost forever.

The birth of Jesus and its impact on the world
The Birth of The Savior & Redeemer, The Second Adam

Yes, this symbolic substitutional death of animals in Eden foreshadowed the substitutional death of our Savior Jesus Christ as Redeemer upon the Cross to cover and protect humanity from sin and death. (John 3:16-17) Paul would say much later, “These things (sacrificial system) are a shadow of the things to come; the reality, however, is found (fulfilled) in Christ” (Col.2:17, italics my emphasis). What happened was symbolic, this first substitutional sacrifice in Eden was the first prophetic and symbolic act of the Messiah to come who would give His life as a sacrifice to cover human sin (nakedness). And this was fulfilled by Jesus’ death upon His Cross.

Paul would say, “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—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!” (Rom.5:12, 17). Then, Paul goes on, “For if we have been united with [Jesus] in a death like His, we will certainly also be united with Him in a resurrection like His” (Rom.6:5). Yes, humanity’s destiny is to inherit the identical resurrection to human immortality Jesus initiated through His own resurrection. (Rom.8:11, 29; John 5:21)

Yes, God gave us His Son so that through His death on the Cross we will not have to face death, and through His resurrection we will receive immortal life. (John 3:16-17) Let us turn to the Cross.

The Cross

The Cross:

This is where we pick up the story of Adam’s fall in Eden, and the transition to the Second Adam’s (Jesus’) story of restitution, redemption, Love and Freedom. (1 Cor.15:45) The primary meaning of the Cross of Jesus is to inherit the gift of freedom from the power of death which came through Adam’s fall. The Cross is about forgiveness and freedom from the imprisonment of sin, wickedness, rebellion through autonomy from God, the devil had established and consigned humanity since the fall of Adam in Eden.

It was upon the Cross that Jesus, the Son of God in human/divine form, was crucified and shed His blood and died for the atonement of all human sin in perpetuity. Athanasius affirms in his treatise, “On The Incarnation”: “If Jesus was only a man His death would not cover the sins of the world nor would He return to life.” Jesus Christ was no ordinary human being, He was the prophesied ‘Immanuel’ (meaning, “God with us”). (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23) He is the second Person of the Tri-Personal Godhead (Trinity). (Matt.28:18-20)

The Bible speaks of Christians “carrying your Cross daily.” (Luk.14:27) This act conveys the message to humanity that by “carrying Jesus’ Cross daily” we may exist in a state of ongoing forgiveness and renewal so peace with God is attained and maintained continuously. Jesus said, “Anyone who does not carry his Cross and follow Me cannot be My disciple” (Luk.14:27). It is at the foot of the Cross that the journey to ultimate immortality begins. He said, “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matt.11:29). Yes, there is the yoke of Jesus’ Love, freedom and eternal life, or the devil’s yoke of sin, injustice, captivity and death. (John 3:16)

However, the immortality Jesus brings is not going to be a form of immortality the first Adam had by way of the glorious garment which was powerless in the face of sin, but the true human/divine immortality instituted by Jesus Himself by His own resurrection and ascension, thus clothing us with the New Garment of Himself. (John 6:47, 3:36; 5:24) Note, “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ” (Gal.3:27). Paul added, “Instead, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom.13:14). Yes, note the new Glorious Garment is none other than Jesus Christ Himself who has lifted mankind to eternal life.

So, in the Father’s glorious presence, humans undergo this deathlike experience of disrobing the sin-conditioned old self from Adam, and stepping into the new life of being robed in the glorified life and garment of His Son, Jesus. (Rom.8:29) “For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies” Paul asserts. (1 Cor.15:53).

Adam’s glorious garment was powerless in the face of sin and vanished instanly when our parent’s disobeyed God. (Gen.3:7, 17,19) However, the Garment of Jesus Christ’s Person possesses power over sin and will never vanish away for He is the Messiah. He has been appointed High Priest so He would forever mediate and consecrate mankind before God Almighty in perpetuity. (Heb.4.14-16; 2:14-18) Paul made an inspiring conclusion about our destiny in Christ as the human species, “For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ” (2 Cor.5:21, NLT).

I draw our attention to the parable of the wedding banquet Jesus told His listeners. “The kingdom of heaven is like a King who prepared a wedding banquet for His Son.” The King “noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless. Then the King told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness” (Matt.22:11-13). The wedding clothes is metaphor for being clothed in the Garment of Jesus Christ, the Author and Finisher of our faith, and wellspring of immortality.

The Resurrection to Human/Divine Immortality, Humanity’s Ultimate Glorious Garment in Christ, Establishing True Freedom and Success

Paul gives us insight into this, saying, “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; 1 Cor.15:51-53). Let us continue our journey with the Second Adam and His work to bring humanity out of Satanic incarceration and into true liberty and eternal life.

The ultimate purpose of Jesus and His Cross is aimed at one gaol – divine Freedom in Love. True freedom is the flipside of God’s divine nature of Love. The two are the same divine substance and indivisibly one. There is another word for freedom: success! Freedom and success are flipsides of one coin. Today, we hear so much about freedom and freedom fighters because of the conflict in central Europe between Russia and Ukraine. Today, we hear of the war erupting in Europe, and this is the picture of freedom lost.

We need to understand where this concept and natural urge for freedom originates. It is humanly inherent and instinctive because mankind assumed the likeness of our Maker who is both Love and Freedom in nature and substance. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:8; Gal.5:1; John 8:32; Rom.8:15) We treasure freedom because God made us to be like Him in His divine substance.

Be that as it may, freedom is not free but it took the life of Jesus, God’s own Son, to purchase our freedom by dying for us upon His Cross at the hands of fallen humans inspired by Satan. “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free,” Paul asserts. (Gal.5:1, 13). However, freedom as a divine commodity from which a way of life is fostered and lived can be subjective based upon personal free will and preference. Today, there are 7.9 billion human beings that populate our earth, and counting. There are historical, emotional, cultural, and other societal inclinations in play which conspire to shape our freedom perspectives one way or another. Our free choice and perspective does not have to stand alone from others, there can be groupings of individuals with the identical points of view.

Although freedom is divinely endowed in humans, free will and free choice (freedom) has to be authenticated for its integrity and impartiality. To a person who is egomaniacal, freedom is viewed through a totally different lens compared to another person’s view of freedom.

Yet, over and above all that, freedom has to ring true and tested, before we can give subjective judgements as to its weight and import in relation to life’s journey for its integrity or deficiency, its success or emptiness. Recall, freedom and success are the flipsides of the coin of truth. Why is this vital? Because the Bible says, “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32). To be free is synonymous with success, as freedom answers to truth.

freedom Inspirational Images
God is Both Love and Freedom in Substance and Reality.

So, our freedoms and successes has to be tested for its authenticity through the gauge of truth. Truth is the scale by which the freedoms we espouse are weighed and substantiated. Only then, we can be certain our freedom and success is true and worth its weight in whatever significance we like to assign it. Yes, freedom and truth go hand in hand. I said earlier another word for freedom is success, and that they are flip sides of one coin. Now, we see the coin is the coin of truth!

Whatever activity we experience and encounter, the one aim of life is to achieve freedom and success. However, if we fail the test of truth then freedom and success will be elusive and unattainable. We may have the appearance of self-assurance and so-called success, unwittingly though we remain in bondage still. Things may seem robust and favorable, but it still must sustain the burden of truth. Life must stand the crucible of truth so freedom and success can be achieved and life becomes a joy to live.

Whether it is the freedom of religion, or one’s political persuasion, personal fiscal/financial freedom, freedom of expression/speech, the personal freewill to choose, the freedom to assembly without fear, the right to petition, a system of liberty to pursue and receive justice, the freedom to live in peace and prosperity, the individual’s freedom to marry for love, etc. However subjective these perspectives to freedoms may be, they must stand the burden of truth. And truth, in turn, will always stand the test of time itself. In other words, truth is eternal just as Love is and will endure forever, and so does the freedoms which have been validated by truth and Love.

Truth is The Scale by Which Our Freedoms Are Weighed

Then, that leaves us with the predominant question of all, what is truth? The answer is crucial and just as impactful because it clears any doubts about whether our freedom perspectives, subjective though they may be, do indeed ring true and bring about the liberty and success we hope it articulates. Or, is it just a ‘false flag’ which leads us down a blind alley and ends nowhere? The devil has always deceived humans and led them down blind alleys and only come to realize too late we never did move, let alone advance, from where they were in the first place – being incarceration and held in bondage to Satan. Sadly, the freedoms we may have assumed we acquired had just turned out to be another side of the picture of our captivity, and like a puzzle we have yet to work out. Regrettably, there we remain in bondage still. But take heart, the Cross of Jesus is our Creator’s answer to the quest for life, freedom and truth.

When God gave His Son to become humanity’s Savior, Jesus came with a message from the Father which settles this question about truth once for all. Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6, italicized for emphasis). Here, we see the Bible tell us that truth is grounded and consolidated in the Person of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. God has not hidden truth in some philosophical idea which humanity is supposed to seek out like some buried treasure. We are not to pursue truth like a Juan Ponce de Leon personality who sought the fountain of youth.

God has made it simple and easy for humanity to comprehend truth – God has gift-wrapped truth for us in the Person of His Son. Truth is absolute, it is reposed in Jesus. (John 14:6, 1:14) Truth is not some abstract notion we juggle in the mind and imagine it will materialize from nothing. No one can deny that God is the ultimate embodiment and repository of truth, and Jesus is the second Person of the Tri-Personal Godhead (Trinity) where truth is housed and abides from eternity. (Matt.28:18-19)

John further attest to this wonderful revelation, “Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17, italicized for emphasis). How would humans come to determine and find the truth if God had not revealed it to us in such a plain and straightforward manner? We would be lost in a sea of concepts, conjectures, and ensuing confusion in our never-ending search. And sadly, peoples the world over, in bygone epochs and eras, have ended up with superstitious beliefs and weird and bizarre conclusions, as many have done so. We are grateful beyond measure for God’s extravagant grace and revelation in His only Son.

Like a beautiful rose with its equally exquisite petals, we see truth’s unfolding wonder and move in the path of the next petal in truth’s evolution and revelation: faith! We have seen that the aim of the Cross is singular and unique – freedom! It means freedom from all forms of bondage we can imagine, principally freedom from death – and since death is the end-all, it means perfect liberty. The Scriptures had foretold of humanity’s restoration from death to life through Jesus Christ. (Psa.49:15; Hos.13:14; John 3:16; Heb.2:14-18)

Paul reiterates this wonderful future for mankind, and writes, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor.15:55-56). We see here how Jesus is the truth for He answers to the human nemesis, death, then brings about the opposite of death – immortality. (John 3:16-17) That, in a nutshell is the ultimate meaning of truth, freedom, and success!

Although freedom is subjective for every human being, we can determine if each of our ideas of freedom is truly genuine and does bring true liberty. To know that, we are required to weigh it on the scale of truth. We have seen truth is defined as the personification of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. (John 14:6) Each petal of the truth (Jesus) unfolds into the path and act of sanctification of Jesus’ faith in our person, our existence as humans. (Rom.3:22; Gal.2:20, KJV) What would be the meaning of life in all its manifestation if the final answer would always going to be the grave (death) and no further. So, we see why Jesus is the truth. Through His Cross He frees us from death and brings humanity true life. And it’s faith that brings all the pieces in God’s truth together in Christ. (Heb.11:1, 6)

Jesus came to reveal the Father to all mankind, who is the ultimate repository of truth. He said, “No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him” (Luk.10:22). Here, Jesus is making known His eternal trinitarian existence with the Father in the one triune Godhead.

But how does truth (Jesus) reveal itself to us, so we may test the integrity of our perceptions of freedom and success? The simple answer is through faith! We are to place our trust and faith in a Person who said He is the repository and Personification of truth. (John 14:6) Jesus alone has to answer to our cause for freedom and true success, He alone is the test and scale upon which our freedoms are weighed, tested, and sanctified in Him alone. (John 14:6)

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Jesus Christ Conveyed God’s Gift Of Human/Divine Immortality to Mankind Through His Own Resurrection. Thus, He Is the Ultimate Answer to Truth, Freedom, and Love. (John 3:16; Rom.8:11, 29; 1 John 4:16)

The prophet Isaiah quotes the Messiah as fulfilling His divine purpose in this manner, “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to bring good news to the poor; He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound” (Isa.61:1). Yes, “To proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound” – in short, Jesus and His Cross is the path to complete liberty! This speaks of freedom first from the spiritual prison and captivity Satan has incarcerated humanity since the fall of Adam, which unravels into every manifestation of freedoms humans can possibly imagine. (Gal.5:1, 13) In short, we’ll be living the ‘miraculous life’ Adam lived on an ongoing basis in Eden in God’s presence before the fall, only now in a much more holistic and sense of eternity, no longer temporal, nor subject to sin and death.

Paul said this about freedom, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery,” echoing Isaiah’s prophecy of Jesus we saw above (Gal.5:1). But what kind of freedom is it, what yoke slavery are we delivered from? Jesus said this about Himself, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). Freedom from what?  Paul asserts, “Jesus the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death” (Rom.8:2).

So, the freedom Jesus brings is total liberty which deliver us from all forms of bondage, both spiritual and physical, arising from sin and rebellion under the devil’s influence. Recall, this is the same punishment and curse for sin decreed upon Adam’s fall in Eden, and passed down to mankind as a whole. (Gen.3:19; Rom.5:12, 17) All forms of bondage we experience as humans results from the fact that we are incarcerated as Satan’s slaves to living autonomously without God in sin and obstinacy.

We are abject failures, more so deceived, at comprehending the far reaching and devastating effects of sin. Sin has become so routine and normalized it has become a way of life. This is the most devastating form of slavery into which humans are presently incarcerated. It is a spiritual prison with human repercussion and consequence akin to being trapped in a curse we have unwittingly come to embrace which only Jesus’ Cross possesess the power to free us.

Paul explains the interplay of faith and its role in the truth which frees humans from bondage, “Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Gal.3:23-29).

What is the purpose of faith? It gives you and I the conviction to trust God’s testimony about His Son Jesus as mankind’s Savior and Liberator and who is the very Spring from whom freedom flows to humanity. The Bible states clearly, “For this is how God Loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). Immortality is the ultimate answer to freedom and success. Faith gives us the assurance about Jesus’ role as the prophesied Messiah. Paul tells us, “We are to walk by faith, and not by sight.” (2 Cor.5:7) Further the Scriptures says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God” (Heb.11:6).

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The Cross
GOD is Love - Home | Facebook
1 John 4:816; “God Is Love”

There are many people who do not believe and have yet to receive Jesus Christ and remain lost. The Scriptures declare, “For with your heart you believe and are justified, and with your mouth you confess and are saved. If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Rom.10:9-10). So here, Paul lays out how we confess with our mouths our faith and conviction in Jesus as the very Son of God and Messiah. Faith is the lifeblood of the Christian life.

The Human Faith, inadequate it may be in the spiritual realm, Is used to trust in the all-powerful “Faith of Jesus,” that’s Living and Miraculous.

I want to share a parable of Jesus with you. Try to imagine a tree so bounteous which brings forth all kinds of fruits hanging from its leafy branches. Let us call it the ‘tree of freedom.’ The tree is a metaphor for liberty in all its glory. This is a unique tree because it bears all manner of fruits, not just a single variety. It bears apples, oranges, mangoes, plums, apricots, even pineapples, grapes, bananas, and as many variety as one can imagine. People from all walks of life flock to feed from the delicious, highly beneficial and tasteful fruits.

The variety of fruits represent all the many different perspectives of freedoms and successes to which humans espouse and pursue. The trunk of the tree (vine) can be likened to the main ‘conduit of freedom’ that represents Jesus, who is the truth. Recall, without truth freedom and success is unattainable, for Scripture says, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32).

The sap flowing in the Vine (Jesus) which provides the life-giving nutrients enabling the tree to produce all variety and abundance of fruits is the power of God’s Spirit flowing through Christ, the Vine. (John 16:12-15) Jesus said, “I am the vine (primary tree trunk); you are the branches. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5, italics my emphasis). He said further, “I am the Real Vine and My Father is the Farmer. He cuts off every branch of Me that doesn’t bear grapes (fruits). And every branch that is grape-bearing He prunes back so it will bear even more. You are already pruned back by the message I have spoken” (John 15:1-3, italics for emphasis).

This tree, its branches and fruits, represents humanity with all the dreams and successes made possible through the divine Freedom and Love. What would be the meaning of the fruits of our lives in all its expression if the final answer for them is in the graveyard of the dead. What would have been the point of life itself if the epitaphs on our gravestones is the only picture we see throughout life. So, we see why Jesus is the truth. We have seen people build monuments to perpetuate and protect their legacies, however, nothing escapes death.

We see Jesus is the answer to genuine freedom and true success. Through His Cross He frees us from death and brings humanity true life. And it’s His faith that brings all the pieces in God’s truth together in Christ. (Heb.11:16) I repeat Paul’s declaration, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor.15:55-56).

Fruit of the Spirit Tree Scripture Art based on Galatians 5 image 1
The Freedom Tree

All the matured, ripened, and delicious fruits on each of the branches received the life-giving nutrients and vitality from the tree trunk or vine. The tree trunk (Vine/Jesus) is the primary conduit for the nutrient-rich sap (Holy Spirit) enabling the branches to bear fruits signifying freedom in its all-inclusiveness. The Vine/Jesus (tree trunk) and the sap were nourished by and in the soil which the Farmer (God the Father) had tended to and fertilized through the Spirit’s power, drive, and inspiration. As we saw, these fruits symbolize each of the freedoms and successes of life we espouse and treasure in totality and perfection. And since they have ripened and become a source for nourishment for us and our neighbors, it proves they have been tested by the truth, namely, the Vine or tree trunk which represent Jesus Christ, the truth! (John 14:6)

Paul explained to us the meaning and magnitude of the ‘sap’ within the tree which provides the necessary nutrients enabling the branches to bear much fruits. Paul taught the Corinthians about the Love-fruits of the Spirit which represent the ‘sap’ of the tree of freedom. (1 Cor.13:1-13) He said, “So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without Love” (1 Cor.13:3, MSG). In other words, as humans we amount to nothing if our lives are not inspired and controlled by Love and Freedom.

The Holy Spirit is the personification of God’s Love in humans. So, the ‘sap’ of the freedom tree is God’s divine Love, flowing in the Vine and personified in the branches (humans) by the presence of the Holy Spirit through the ‘fruits of freedom’ Paul taught the Corinthians. Paul further said, “Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple, and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Cor.3:16). (To read about the Love-fruits of the Spirit which represent the ‘sap’ in the Vine (Jesus), you may go to my post, titled, “Gifts Are Magnets of the Love Personality” at: http://bulamanriver.net/27435).       

The life we live as Christians is a life of living faith. Yet, even the faith we need is a gift from God, not our human faith that’s inadequate in spiritual matters where it’s constrained by our limited human senses. What is needed is the very personal “faith of Jesus.” Note, “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no distinction among people” (Rom.3:22, KJV). Did you notice, there are two faiths mentioned here, the “faith of Jesus,” and the human faith – “unto all and upon all them that believe.” We utilize our human faith, inadequate it may be in the spiritual realm, to trust in the all-powerful “faith of Jesus,” that’s living and miraculous. As we receive Jesus as Savior, we inherit His living Personal faith empowered in the Holy Spirit. (Rom.10:9-10; Act.2:38)

(The “Love-Fruits of the Holy Spirit” are shown in detail below in the appendix. You may read my Post titled, “The Saving Living Faith of Jesus” at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946.)

It is this ‘tree of freedom’ that was hewn down to make and erect the Cross upon which wicked humans impersonating the hands of the evil one, took and nailed Jesus’ upon it. So, we see the Cross of Jesus, hewn from the ‘tree of freedom.’ Upon this Cross Jesus took all mankind’s sins and acts of rebellion and nailed them and put them to death, so we may experience true Freedom and Love.

Dove, Symbolof The Holy Spirit of Love

Let me recap the subject of of this post, “The Cross.” The Scriptures say that the purpose of humanity’s creation is to attain and inherit the “image of God.” (Gen.1:26-27). But what is that image? The Bible says it is the likeness of Jesus Christ, our Savior. Listen to Paul’s words, “For God knew His people in advance, and He chose them to become like His Son, so that His Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters” (Rom.8:29). Jesus is the new glorious garment in which humans will be clothed. (Gal.3:27; 1 Cor.15:53)

By saying, “His Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters,” it is affirming Christ took our fallan humanity, redeemed it through His Cross, and inaugurated (firstborn) human immortality through His resurrection so we become God’s children forever. The Scriptures tell us, “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them” (John 3:36). Mankind will exist in God’s very substance of Love and Freedom for eternity. This is the ultimate purpose of The Cross.

We earlier read the parable of the wedding banquet. It is the wedding of God’s Son, Jesus Christ, to His bride, comprising all humanity who have been made immortal. In the scene from the book of Revelation, we see the Father’s wedding gift for the marriage of His Son. This is what John saw in his vision, “Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 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.21:1-5).

Yes, a new heaven and new earth, and the most astounding city whose streets are marvelously paved in gold. Truly, what a gift, what an awesome sight to behold, what a fantastical future awaits humanity. (Rev.21:21; 9-27)

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 is our hope and 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 Immanuel 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, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for the holy God, the Creator’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.”

File:Praying Hands - Albrecht Durer.png - Wikimedia Commons
Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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 listed in our ‘archives’ that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

May I take this occasion to wish you and you families and loved ones a solemn and joy-filled Passover and Easter.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee  (Your Servant In Christ)

Appendix: *The “Love-Fruits of the Holy Spirit:” *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness,  *the fruit of modesty (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; also Gal. 5:22-23; Rom. 12:9-21).

9,645 Holy Spirit Dove Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock
The Holy Spirit as Symbolized By The Dove Is the Nutrient-Rich “Sap” of the Tree of Freedom and Love

*”Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. He is also clothed in Freedom. For the three Persons of the Trinity are three distinct and free Persons in the triune Godhead. Love and Freedom by nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness (Trinity), not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God through Christ once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God through Christ, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the one Triunity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam, for she came out of Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

The Christian Faith As Recorded In the Nicene Creed

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

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MINISTRY OF RECONCILIATION, BY KIANG P LEE

Greeting Friends! The Bible calls God’s purpose to save and restore humanity to its rightful place in the divine will, the “Ministry of Reconciliation.” What is the “Ministry of Reconciliation?” The term is taken from Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians, “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Cor.5:18, NASB, emphasis mine). Yes, it means that from the unfathomable depth of His Love, God has taken the first step to reach out and save fallen humans from the sin-condition under which humanity has been held prisoner to Satan, the devil. (Rom.5:8; Rom.7:23) (To read more about the sin-condition go to my blog titled: “Sin Is a Condition As Love is a Condition” at http://bulamanriver.net/5437).

Ministry of Reconciliation

The word ‘ministry’ conveys a mission, an undertaking, an obligation and responsibility, to complete the task and business at hand. ‘Reconciliation’ means an act of mitigating a state of discord and alienation which exists between two parties. It means to bring about reunion where separation exists. In mitigating a state of discord, the passage says, God is “Reconciling us to Himself through Christ.” It means divine reconciliation is entirely different from other forms of restoration common to humans. The common refrain “I am sorry” is a form of everyday conciliation expression most humans know. People appear before a judge in a court case to make reparation for an offense is another common form of seeing that justice is done, and quite possibly, reconciliation. In many customs and cultures people have different and wide-ranging methods of appeasement and settlement that are practiced.

However, in the area of divine mediation God has determined there is only one way of mitigating human sin and rebellion against Him. There is no other means by which humanity can be mediated in the divine reconciliation except through God’s own Son, Jesus Christ. By the same breadth, He is the only conduit by which God’s Love flows to mankind and brings divine accommodation for reconciliation with God. (John 3:16) A person or a group of people may sacrifice as many livestock upon a thousand hills, but their supposed act of conciliation will all be for naught; for God has determined from the foundation of the world, and the beginning of time, that there is but one way and one Person by whom reconciliation with God and the divine will can be done – His only Son, Jesus Christ. (Gen.3:14-15; John 3:16-17)

Atonement and Jesus Christ | Articles | Moody Church Media
The Cross is the Symbol of Reconciliation and Peace (Col.1:20)

What is atonement? It is the restitution paid for making peace through reconciliation possible. The price of restitution is the life and blood of Jesus Christ. (Col.1:20; 1 Cor.7:23; Act.20:28; John 3:16) So, Jesus Christ is humanity’s complete Savior, being the only instrument of reconciliation with God. He is our atonement for sin and rebellion when He sacrificed Himself through the shedding of His blood upon His cross. And Jesus did not remain a dead Savior upon His cross, but God raised Him up from the dead so that He can continue His work of mediating for humanity’s peace as our glorious High Priest in heaven forever. (1 Cor.6:14; Mar.16:19; Heb.4.14-16) Jesus is called the Prince of Peace. (Isa.9:6) All of the above encapsulates the finished work of reconciliation God has accomplished for humanity through His Son.

Bible Verse Canvas Isaiah 9:6 The Prince of Peace Christian Home Décor  Ready to Hang Wall Art Scripture - Walmart.com
The Prince of Peace (Isa.9:6
Ten Ways to Love Like God Loves | Love Worth Finding Ministries
God Is Love

As humans, we do not know what to do or how to be reconciled to God to begin with. Nor do we understand what to bring and offer to God to make recompense and redress for our transgressions. Humans have no clue or guide as far as his interaction and relationship with the divine will and purpose of Almighty God. But then we see God, who is Love in His very Being and substance extends grace and provided for and done all that mankind needs in this regard. Thus, being reconciled through His Son, we see the culmination of the divine will in making humanity His very offspring, possessing immortality. (John 3:16-17; Act.20:28; 2 Cor.5:18; 1 Cor.15:53) So, we see the display of God’s Love in the following aspects:

  1. Mission – God’s Love and Mercy (John 3:16; 1 John 4:8)
  2. Reconciliation – Jesus the Son, the Messiah (2 Cor.5:18; Rom.5:10)
  3. Atonement – Blood and Life of Jesus (Act.20:28; Col.1:20; Lev.17:14)
  4. Reborn/Offspring – Made Immortal children (John 3:3, 5; 1 Cor.15:54)
  5. Eternal Mediation through Jesus as High Priest (Heb.4:14)

As we approach the season of Passover and Easter in the Christian calendar, I wish for us to pause and consider these five outpouring heartfelt urgings of God’s Love to reconcile fallen humanity as His continuous mission upon this earth to bring us into His eternal kingdom as immortal offspring.

The Crucifixion of Jesus - Facts About His Death on the Cross
The Cross” is the Symbol of Reconciliation and Peace (Co.1:20) (Visit Next Month’s Post)

I invite you to join me in my next post about the subject of “The Cross.” The Cross is the symbol of reconciliation and peace. Paul said, “Through Him (Jesus) to reconcile everything to Himself by making peace through the blood of His cross” (Col.1:20).

I will close with the following postscript. One of the mission task God gave His Son was to inaugurate a vital blessing to indicate a person’s commitment to God’s mission of reconciliation outlined above. Jesus was to inaugurate the baptismal blessing of spiritual rebirth through access to the Holy Spirit. This was utterly important for the restoration of God’s purpose for humanity which was lost in Eden. (Gen.1:26-27; 3:11, 23-24)

We are receiving this vital link to our Edenic paradisal past through the baptismal template of Jesus when He was baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. There were followers who were baptized as John’s disciples, not Jesus’ (Luk.7:18-19) John explained the difference, he told the people, “I baptize with water those who repent of their sins and turn to God. But Someone is coming soon who is greater than I am—so much greater that I’m not worthy even to be His slave and carry His sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (Matt.3:11).

Baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist Whereupon He Inaugurated the Gift of the Holy Spirit (Matt.3:11, 16-17; John 1:31-34)

John said, “I baptize with water those who repent of their sins and turn to God” (Matt.3:11). But Jesus was sinless. (1 John 3:5; 2 Cor.5:21) So, what was the purpose of Jesus’ baptism, John explains, “He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (John 3:11). Only Jesus was given the task by God of introducing the Holy Spirit to humanity. (John 16:7; Luk.24:49) So, Jesus took up the baptism of John for repentance of sin on mankind’s behalf, and above all introduced the baptism of the Holy Spirit through Him as Messiah.

While performing baptism in the Jordan, John recognized Jesus approaching him, and knew he could not baptize Jesus for He was without sin, “But John tried to talk Him out of it. “I am the one who needs to be baptized by You,” he said, “so why are You coming to me?” (Matt.3:14, NLT). Jesus answered John saying, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires. So, John agreed to baptize Him.” (Matt.3:15).

Fr. Jonel - MONDAY OF THE 2ND WEEK OF EASTER John 3:1-8 Jesus hints  Nicodemus on some of the secrets of the spiritual life. “Unless one is born  anew, he cannot see
The above text from John Informs us About How Jesus, on behalf of Humanity, Undertook John’s Baptism of Repentance of human sin, and the Baptism of the Holy Spirit which Jesus Inaugurated.

Both Jesus and John had separate but related baptismal missions from God to carry out. In Jesus’ baptism, He repented for humanity (for He had no sin), and in so doing, He inaugurated the coming of the Holy Spirit. For immediately “After His baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on Him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is My dearly Loved Son, who brings Me great joy” (Matt.3:16-17, NLT) Here, we see how the Holy Spirit was introduced to humanity since the fall of man in Eden, and later poured out upon humanity on Pentecost. (Act.2:1-4) After the fall of Adam and Eve in Eden, humanity was cut off from the ‘tree of life’ which symbolized the Holy Spirit. (Gen.3:22-23) But now, through Jesus’ mediation as the atonement for sin, He is made to come back as mankind’s Helper and Friend. (John 14:26)

When humans receive the blessing of the baptismal ceremony, they are doing so in the template of Jesus’ own baptism wherein the Spirit is inherently conferred as a gift from God the Father. He took up John’s baptism of repentance on behalf of all humanity for all time, past, present, and future, on top of His sacrifice as atonement, paid the final solution to sin. (Heb.9:24-28) Humans cannot be baptized for both repentance and the Holy Spirit except it is done in the template of Jesus’ baptism. Thus, Jesus told John that what they were commissioned to do would “fulfill all righteousness” (Matt.3:15).

And yes, for each and every baptism, the Father joyfully uses the same compliment articulated upon Jesus at His baptism, “You are My dearly Loved children, who brings Me great joy” (Matt.3:17; Luk.3:22) This is not our baptism by virtue of personal choice, no, but in freely receiving Christ as Savior, we are baptized into the template of Christ’s own baptism of the Holy Spirit who brings the power of reconciliation and peace inaugurated by Him in the Jordan for all time.

The Holy Spirit, Personification of God’s Divine Life and Love in Humanity

Through Jesus, the presence of the Holy Spirit gives passage for humans to undergo this spiritual rebirth. That is the major theme in Jesus’ baptism. Jesus tell us about what the Spirit does to human believers, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5). Yes, the Spirit gives humanity the passage to enter God’s holy presence at and before His very seat of mercy to petition His goodness.

However, the Spirit cannot come without Jesus’ prior mediation as Savior and Redeemer who absolves all human sin and rebellion, and through His baptism gave passage for the Holy Spirit to come and indwell humans. (1 Cor.3:16) And this takes place at the point of receiving and partaking in the template of Jesus’ baptism where He has taken up John’s baptism of repentance, and “He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire” (John 3:11, also, Rom.6:3-7). Before Jesus’ ascension into heaven, He told the disciples,“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).

This is a life of faith in Jesus’ finished work, it is not about what you and I can or can’t do. (Rom.1:17; 3:22; Heb.11:6) Paul said, “It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy” (Rom.9:16). Further, he added, “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, italics my emphasis). We rest our trust and faith entirely upon God’s profound and abiding mercy.

We are sadly mistaken when we assume the human brain is for cerebral/intellectual activity alone. The brain, whensoever ordained and charged in God’s Spirit, becomes the human mind which possesses a transcendant quality with infinite capacity beyond our knowing and cognizance. General Douglas McArthur said, “It must be of the ‘spirit’ if we are to save the flesh.” Yes, the world does not need us to save it, but more so we need saving so the world can be saved.

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 is our hope and 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 Immanuel 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, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for the holy God, the Creator’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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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 listed in our ‘archives’ that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee  (Your Servant in Christ)

Appendix: *”Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. He is also clothed in Freedom. For the three Persons of the Trinity are three distinct and free Persons in the triune Godhead. Love and Freedom by nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness (Trinity), not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God through Christ once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God through Christ, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the one Triunity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam, for she came out of Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

***Homoousios: “In Christianity, the key term of the Christological doctrine formulated at the first ecumenical council, held at Nicaea in 325, to affirm that God the Son and God the Father are of the same substance. The Council of Nicaea condemned Arianism, which taught that Christ was more than human but not fully divine. The use of homoousios (Greek: “of one substance”) in the creed produced at the council was meant to put an end to the controversy” – https://www.britannica.com/topic/homoousios). 

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 GOD OF LOVE & FREEDOM (ABRAHAM LINCOLN SAID, “AS I WOULD NOT BE A SLAVE, SO I WOULD NOT BE A MASTER”)

Greetings Friends! There is only one place in the whole of the known and unknown universe where life, both seen and unseen, springs forth. It is from this source that all of creation burst forth in life, whether physical or non-physical (spiritual). This is the residence of the One who declares Himself to be God who is Creator of everything. He is the uncreated Almighty God who exists in His substance of Love and Freedom.

He declares Himself omnipotent, meaning He is “all powerful.” The Bible quotes God, “I am the Lord, the Maker of all things, who stretches out the heavens, who spreads out the earth by Myself” (Isa.44:24). The prophet introduced the passage about God being Creator of all humanity, “This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb” (Isa.44:24; read also, Psa.139) 

He shows Himself to be omniscient which means He is “all knowing.” God knows everything. The Bible says, “For whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and He knows everything” (1 John 3:20). Further, the Bible says, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before His eyes, and He is the One to whom we are accountable” (Heb.4:13; also, Prov.5:21; 15:3).

He reveals Himself to be omnipresent, meaning God is “present everywhere” or He is in all places at once. The Psalmist utters God’s omnipresence, “Where shall I go from Your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from Your Presence? If I ascend to heaven, You are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, You are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me” (Psa.139:7-10, ESV).

God, in His sovereign mantle of Love and Freedom, calls creation into existence from the expanse and vacuum of nothingness by the creative words of His Son. (John 1:1-4) The Bible states, “In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son…through whom He made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His Being, sustaining all things by His powerful word” (Heb.1:1-3). God encompasses all space and time, and things seen and unseen, and declares Himself to His creation through His Son. Further God says, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End” (Rev.22:13). God, in His mantle of Love and Freedom, spreads creation out as a curtain where all of life is made to manifest.


In all God’s greatness from what we have seen described above, He also reveals His divine nature. He reveals Himself as the God who is Love and Freedom in nature and substance.

In all God’s greatness from what we have seen described above, He also reveals His divine nature. He reveals Himself as the God who is Love in nature and substance. John declares this beautiful truth about God, “God is Love” (1 John 4:8). So, while He is inherently “all powerful” (omnipotent), “all knowing” (omniscient), and is “present everywhere” (omnipresent), God exists spontaneously in His overarching nature of Love. The opposite of Love is hatred, depravity, hostility, self-centeredness, greed, rude and uncaring, coarse and brutish, heartless, unforgiving, cruel, aloof and unfriendly, and so forth. He is none of that, for He is unconditionally and perfectly Love in nature and substance!

However, God is not only Love, He is also the embodiment of Freedom in every sense – He is Freedom personified! He is Freedom in the truest sense of the word, just as He is absolutely Love in substance and reality! As noun or verb, God is both Love and Freedom Personified in His Trinitarian Being. When He created humankind, He Freely chose to do so out of His great Love. And He Freely chose to make humans in His likeness, that is to say, to possess both Love and Freedom as He is in His Tri-Personal Being and Godhead (Trinity). (Matt.28:18-19; 2 Cor.13:14). So, whenever the nature of God is mentioned it always convey both His trinitarian Love and Freedom as one indivisible divine substance.

Gods Love Clip Art N7 free image download

Humans have searched and conjured up deities following their fallen minds from Adam, and have been led by the devil through idol and other forms of worship with equally evil practices. Unless and until the true God and Creator chooses to reveal Himself to humanity, we are left at the whims of our fallen and sin-conditioned imagination about His deity. Satan has taken advantage of this ignorance and led fallen humanity down the dark path of false and satanic worship. However, the Bible says this about the Creator’s revelation about Himself.

“Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. And now in these final days, He has spoken to us through His Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son He created the universe. The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God, and He sustains everything by the mighty power of His command. When He had cleansed us from our sins, He sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God in heaven. This shows that the Son is far greater than the angels, just as the name God gave Him is greater than their names” (Heb.1:1-4, NLT).

So through Jesus, the Son, God created mankind in His own image, and that image is seen and replicated in His Son, Jesus. (Rom.8:29; 2 Cor.4:4) God reveals Himself not as a solitary God as humans have attempted to portray Him, rather, He revealed Himself as a Tri-Personal Being in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Trinity). (Matt.28:18-19; 1 Pet.1:2; Act.7:55; 2 Cor.13:14) The three Persons of the Trinity are three distinct and free Persons in the Godhead. Paul’s blessing upon the Corinthians was uttered with these words, “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all” (2 Cor,13:14). Jesus said this about Him and the Father, “No one has seen the Father except the One (Jesus) who is from God; only He has seen the Father” (John 6:46, italics my emphasis). Further Jesus declares His divine origin in the Triune Godhead, saying, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6).

Freedom Clipart Transparent - Transparent Freedom Clip Art - Free  Transparent PNG Clipart Images Download

Having seen God’s Triune Being is characterized by both Love and Freedom, let’s dig deeper into the flipside of God’s Love nature…that of Freedom, and why is this important to comprehend and understand? Consider, in His Personal Freedom, God gave up His Son to be born a human and die as a worthy sacrifice to save mankind from sin and rebellion, and gift us with immortality. (John 3:16-17) When Jesus gave His life to be crucified upon His cross, He freely did so as a Free Person within the Trinity, “The reason My Father Loves Me is that I lay down My life—only to take it up again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of My own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father” (John 10:17-18). This reveals the truth that each Person within the trinitarian Godhead is fully God and distinctly Free and whole Personalities.

Then Jesus explained the Father’s free-will to surrender His Son for humanity’s Freedom, He said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, for He has anointed Me to bring Good News (from the Father and Spirit) to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come” (Luk.4:18-19, NLT, italics my emphasis). Jesus was reading from the scroll in a synagogue, and told His listeners, “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!” (Luk.4:21). The time of Jubilee (freedom) was here. The central plank of Jesus’ mission was to bring Freedom by setting humanity free from rebellion and the sin-condition the devil had imprisoned mankind since the fall of Adam in the Garden of Eden. (Gen.3:1-6).

Jesus’ mission was to set humanity Free as God is Free in His Tri-Personal Being. For in stating the obvious regarding the unity of the purpose of the divine Godhead to save mankind, the trinitarian culture and value is self-evident in that the act of one is always the act of three, and the act of three is always the act of one. (2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.5:21; Matt.28:18-19) God exists in three equally Free divine Persons of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Because of their shared substance is a divine one, all three Persons are divine and equally Love and equally Free. This is God’s image replicated in human beings when He created mankind. (Gen.1:26-27) It is from the Free Personalities of the triune Godhead by which human individual freedom is realized, understood, and replicated.

John tells us about God’s judgement for giving His Son, “And the (God’s) judgment is based on this fact: God’s light (Jesus) came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil” (John 3:19, italics my emphasis). 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). He goes on, “So, if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:36). Freedom was the key pillar of Jesus’ mission.

Here, we see that ‘light’ and ‘darkness’ are used metaphorically for ‘freedom’ from or ‘bondage’ to evil and sin. What is this freedom? Paul said, “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.5:1). The “yoke of slavery” means the sin-condition humans have been held in bondage to since Adam’s fall in Eden. (Rom.5:17: Gen.3:1-6; 2:15-17) Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin” (John 8:34; 2 Pet.2:19). Paul goes on, “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Cor.3:17).

Abraham Lincoln said, “As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master.” In this fallen world of Satan, he is the master in the systemetic spritual slavery system he has established over unsuspecting humanity. There is but One true Master in heaven, who is Himself Freedom and its complete embodiment who leads humanity on the pathway to liberty and Love. Jesus said, “No one is able to serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and he will love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and he will despise the other. You are not able to serve God and mammon (self-centeredness)” (Matt.6:24, italics my emphasis).

Nowadays many people live and exist like they are anything but free. To be sure, all of humanity exists today in a state of bondage to the devil’s sin-condition of mutinous rebellion against God, following Lucifer’s (now Satan’s) original revolt against his Sovereign Creator. (Isa.14:12-14; Ezek.28:11-19) For humanity, it started from Adam’s fall in Eden, following Lucifer’s revolt. So, feeling subjugated is natural to the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ having inherited the same spirit of bondage from Satan through Adam’s fall. Paul said, “Because one person (Adam) disobeyed God, many became sinners (remain in fallen condition). But because one other Person obeyed God (Jesus Christ), many will be made righteous” (Rom.5:19, NLT, italics my emphasis).

Yes, after Adam’s fall, God immediately promised to send His Son, Jesus Christ, to save us through His ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ (Gen.3:14-15; Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23, 21) Yes, His prophetic name, ‘Immanuel,’ reveals Jesus’ origin from the divine Tri-Personal Godhead (Trinity). (Matt.28:18-19; 2 Cor.13:14) It means Jesus was God in human flesh, for that is what ‘Immanuel’ means, “God with us” (Matt.1:23; also, Isa.9:6; John 3:16).  

In this incarcerated condition, humans have become prisoners of their own making because of the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ inherited from Satan through Adam’s fall in Eden. (Gen.3:1-6; 2:16-17) Be that as it may, mankind possess human freedom and thereby can choose which way to follow – Satan’s way of sin and self-centeredness, or Christ’s triune way of Love, collaboration, and freedom. One of the consequences of following the Satan’s rebellious way is people’s inclination to place blame upon others or on external extraneous factors for their failures.

This began with Adam for blaming Eve for eating the forbidden fruit. (Gen.3:10-13). When God asked Eve about it, she blamed Satan. But Satan blamed them for he is called “the accuser of the brethren” (Rev.12:10) He is the blamer-in-chief, for the Scriptures tell us he is “the accuser of our brothers and sisters — the one who accuses them before our God day and night” (Rev.12:10). He is also called God’s and thereby humanity’s adversary. (1 Pet.5:8). So, the common human trait and pastime of playing the ‘blame game’ started in Eden.

Eve was spot-on for blaming Satan, nevertheless, humans possess individual freedoms incubated in the divine Love-image, and must take responsibility for their own actions. We share the blame when we freely choose not to take responsibility for our freedoms, despite our ignorance or willfulness in the moment. Paul warned us, “Do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke (bondage) of slavery (sin)” (Gal.5:1, italic my emphasis). That is why Jesus had to freely and voluntarily choose to die upon His cross as our worthy sacrifice, because we sinned freely and willfully, albeit at the instigation of the Evil One. (Read about overcoming the devil’s temptations following Jesus’ example at: http://bulamanriver.net/20216

People tend to refuse to own up to their failures without realizing we are actually living in the spirit of subjugation of the Evil One who instigates and promotes failures and accusations (blaming). (Rev.12:10) Paul pointed out our dilemma, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Eph.6:12, ESV).

People blame adverse conditions, from economic status and or misfortune, to other’s political persuasion and governments, to racial division and animosity, to ill fortune and just bad breaks, to ill health and negative circumstances, and whatever cause they want to assign blame, take a pick. But it is a symptom of our fallen human nature from Adam. We must be cognizant of the spiritual forces which undertow our freedoms and motivations. (Eph.6:12) In all this, there is Freedom we must contend with and answer to. Freedom imparts transparency to human personal responsibility.  

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against  principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this  world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Let us continue as Jesus magnify our understanding on this point about freedom, saying, “Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is clear, your whole body is also light; but when it is evil, your body is also dark. Therefore, take heed, lest the light that is in you be darkness. If therefore your body is full of light, not having any part dark, it will be all light, as when the lamp shining might light you” (Luk.11:34-36, BLB). Light and darkness are symbols for freedom and bondage. Jesus is speaking about two realities, like two sets of ‘eyes’: the physical eye, and the spiritual eye. They both see things differently, depending on which pair of eyes is perceiving (seeing).

If your human eye is the lamp of the physical body, then your spiritual eye (vision) is the lamp to the soul (mind) spiritual body. The human mind is the factory for thoughts where thought-processes are manufactured and turned into human action. Light and darkness are metaphors for freedom and bondage, benevolence and malevolence, sin and virtue (Love), salvation and condemnation. Thereby, our actions which flow from our sight (perception), conceived in our thoughts, generated by actions which constitute either freedom or bondage (light or darkness), virtue (Love) or sin (rebellion).

The important question to answer is, who is the ‘light’ of your eye? 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). Satan is also called light, a masquerading “the angel of light” (2 Cor.11:14). This is what Paul spoke of when he warned, “Therefore take heed that the light within you is not darkness” (Luk.11:35). The only light which can be seen in darkness is the devil who masquerades himself as an “angel of light” (2 Cor.11:14). We can be in darkness but able to see only the ‘light’ the devil emits from his masquerading “angel of light.” Jesus is the true Light which brings Freedom.

Let us be spiritually perceptive in our understanding that life incorporates human experiences that reveal personal messages from the divine will. God is using the humdrum events of our lives as kind of alphabets, the bits and pieces of His language of Love that, under the subterranean strata of our lives and with the spiritual eyes convey His Love, purpose, and Freedoms. Paul said in effect that nothing happens inadvertently by accident, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who Love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (Rom.8:28). This act of self-discovery and remembering is vital in seeking the treasures buried in God’s own heart for our lives. We train our eyes to see the light through the fingerprints of God in all our situation and circumstances. Jesus said, “Blessed are your eyes because they see” (Matt.13:16).

Satan’s mode of deception has always been to try to create a counterfeit light to God’s light in Jesus Christ. For in Christ’s light we are bathed in Freedom, in Satan’s light (fake “angel of light”) we grope and fumble in the darkness of sin and rebellion. (2 Cor.11:14) Satan was once genuine angel of light when God created him an anointed cherub, named Lucifer, called the “Shining Star of the Dawn” (Ezek.28:14; Isa.14:12). But through his revolt with his rebellious angels, his light was extinguished and he mutated into Satan, God’s adversary and angel of darkness. (1 Pet.5:8; Isa.14:12-14; Col.1:13)

Now he is masquerading the former glory which he once had and lost in order to deceive humanity. Today, the Bible tells us something different about Satan, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world’s darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph.6:12). So, he is the angel of darkness who rule in his dark world. (Col.1:13).

Pin on So true...

Humans have vision through two pair of eyes. One is physical, and the other is spiritual. They both perceive differently, depending on which pair of eyes is doing the observation and considering the facts before it. If Jesus is our light, then we will have both pair of eyes, but with the spiritual eyes we will observe true light which brings spiritual “health” as Luke’s gospel puts across. (Luk.11:34) We will perceive the truth for Jesus said, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32, italics my emphasis). Jesus is our light that brings truth and freedom! Truth and Freedom are opposite sides of the same coin. The passage to Freedom is through the Truth, in the Person of Jesus, who said, who said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).

However, with ordinary (unconverted) pair of eyes, without Jesus as our light, we will see with both vision pairs, however, spiritually we will only see Satan’s counterfeit light (“angel of light”) in his dark world. (2 Cor.11:14). With Jesus’ pair of eyes, we will see through the darkness of Satan’s counterfeit light. With ordinary (unconverted) pair of eyes, the only ‘light’ we will see is Satan’s light disguising as the “angle of light.” The ‘light’ he projects emanates and bursts forth from the very depths of hades. He is true darkness, and the prince of darkness. (Col.1:13; Eph.6:12) Unless we have the right pair of eyes of Jesus with His light, we will not see the devil for what he truly is, the angel of darkness. (John 8:12) We remain in bondage to his rebellion and sin-condition.

Truth Will Set You Free JPEG Printable - Designtwits

When Paul, then named Saul, miraculously encountered Jesus Christ on his way to Damascus, Jesus gave him a commission, “I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’” (Act.26:12, 15-18, italics my emphasis). Did you notice, Paul’s mission was to raise a people from the Gentile population, who are given this new pair of eyes so they may see light (freedom) from darkness (bondage) and turn away from bondage and follow the path of freedom (light) in Christ – “through faith in Me (Jesus)” (Act.26:18). The Bible calls Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles. (Rom.11:13) Paul was given the same mission the Father gave Jesus. (Luk.4:18-19)

Once again, why is it important to comprehend God’s divine nature of Love and Freedom…and notably Freedom as we are doing in this post today? The passage to Freedom is through the Truth… the very Person of Jesus Christ who said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). In the final scenario of God’s plan for humanity, after all things in God’s venerated and blessed future plan for humanity have been restituted by and through His Son, He reveals this beautiful truth about mankind’s destiny in all creation and in the divine sacred order. It is prophetically uttered in this fashion, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory” (Rom.8:17; also read, Rev.21:1-8).

Humans are predestined to become offspring of the divine, children of Freedom, children of God. By saying, “heirs of God” means to become heirs of who God is in both His ‘Love Personality,’ and ‘Personality of Freedom.’ To “inherit all things” is to become co-heirs with Jesus of all creation. (Rev.21:7) As offspring and heirs of God and His creation humanity reflect His personalities of Love and Freedom. For God is Love and Freedom by nature and substance (homoousios*). (1 John 4:8, 16; John 8:32, 36; Gal.5:1; Gen.1:26-27).

MoveOnArt Peace Love Unity Freedom Liberty Digital Art by MovesOnArt Jacob
The Holy Spirit, Symbolized by the Dove, Manifestation of Love & Freedom In Humanity

God has created humanity for Freedom to reflect Him in His divine nature. Let’s now answer what is this divine substance we call Freedom, and why is it so vital to our lives and the lives of all peoples? And most importantly, for the wellbeing of humanity as a whole. It is wrapped up in Jesus’ answer, “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). Recall, we have seen that ‘light’ is synonymous with ‘freedom,’ as ‘darkness’ is with ‘bondage.’ Paul told the Galatians, “It is for Freedom that Christ has set us Free” (Gal.5:1, my emphasis; John 8:36). Freedom is ultimately about squaring our lives with and about the Truth of sin which holds us in bondage.

“I Am The Truth” John 14:6

What is light? According to the Bible, it is personified in the life and person of Jesus Christ. “I Am the light of the world, He said succinctly and unambiguously. Freedom is not some mystical, nonphysical, substance we take ownership of like some metaphysical element we can earn, collect and amass, and even manipulate. It is not a degree we earn in college. This is the first truth about Freedom we must wrap around our limited human minds – (I say ‘limited’ not in a derogatory sense, but to underscore how far humanity has drifted from the divine reality since the fall of man in Eden). Freedom is bound up in the Person of Jesus Christ…Freedom shines forth from His ‘light’ as the second Person of the Tri-Personal Godhead (Trinity). (John 8:12, 32).

Sin and rebellion stands as a wall which prevents Freedom from reaching the human mind to illuminate and inspire us with the brilliance of God’s enlightenment. The whole of creation is tied to the divine reality of God’s Person which we saw at the start of this blog, that God is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent.

Let me attempt to expand on this extra-ordinary truth about the Person of Jesus who brings about Freedom for He is the Personification of it. Freedom is embodied in the Person of Jesus Christ. I realize that can be very hard to comprehend, having been reared in the fallen, dark, world of the Evil One. Throughout time and history since Eden, our first parents enjoyed the blessed state of existence in complete wellbeing, sufficiency, wholesomeness, and joy unbound in the presence of God. They never knew or experienced any semblance of physical or spiritual degeneration, neither any lack or want whatsoever.

Since God brought forth all things through the creative hands of His Son, then the whole of creation and the universe is wrappred up in Jesus Christ’s Person as the Fountain of life itself. (Heb.1:1-3) Creation does not and cannot derive its existence from nothing, but must spring forth from life itself wrapped up in the Person of Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul affirms this, “For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death” (Rom.8:2, ESV). Life cannot evolve by a natural process on its own, but by the ‘Spirit of life’ (Holy Spirit) through Christ. (John 14:6)

We can scientifically examine and explain how life is transmitted and emitted from a natural source or element, like our sun. That is merely the analysis of output, yet we’re left with the question of input, which answers the question of life and reality itself which is totally different. God Himself says, “Not by (human) might, nor by (natural) power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD of hosts” (Zech.4:6; italics my emphasis; also, John 6:63; Act.1:8; Job 32:8; Psa.33:6). Ultimately, the sun’s solar energy is harnessed and radiates through the input of God’s Spirit, the very mantle of power that holds the whole universe in its cosmic order and center. (Col.1:17; Heb.1:3)

We can see exquisite colorful butterflies, humble insects that can solve seemingly complex problems by working together, and even ‘intelligent’ animals, and wonder at the marvelous creative hands of God. The Psalmist declare, “You give them Your breath, life is created and You renew the earth” (Psa.104:30). Hence, all life and all creation is wrapped up in the mantle of the Person of Jesus who said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life” (John 14:6; Heb.1:2). This awareness and recognition is the precept upon which the human mind is launched into the pathway to genuine liberty, creativity, and eventual immortality. (John 3:16)

The Way The Truth The Life - slide share

Only after humanity’s fall through Adam and Eve, have we drifted so distant away from our predestined Edenic reality that was mankind’s very first divinely miraculous birthright. Humanity has never experienced what it was like to exist in such an Edenic paradise. What we experience today can only be measured in terms of our spiritual distance from God, and humanity’s drift into the darkness of the evil world the devil has fashioned for fallen humans. Through Adam’s fall we have lost our wonder and fascination for God’s Love, and awe for His sovereign Freedom. Be that as it may, the Spirit ensures humans will never lose their inborn divine destiny nor will it be erased. (Gen.1:26-27)

We may have chosen to live autonomously from the Creator and His Love as Lucifer (Satan) did, but God rescues us through His Son in order to bring mankind to His triune (nonautonomous) Love-Being. (Luk.17:21, KJV; Rom.5:12; Ezek.28:13-19) We have lost every glimmer and import of the reality Adam and Eve once enjoyed existing in the Love and Freedom of the divine Tri-Personal Being of God (Trinity). Paul told the people of Athens, “For in Him we live and move and have our being’” (Act.17:28).

In promising to restore our human birthright in the image and likeness of God by saving mankind from sin and death, the Bible made a remarkable prediction about Jesus’ role as our Savior and High Priest. (John 3:16; Heb.4:14-16). He was prophesied to appear as One who is the “refiner’s fire,” and “launderer’s soap.” It means He ‘cleanses’ and ‘refines’ His people. (Mal.3:2-4) As humanity’s High Priest today, He appears before our Almighty Father and performs this role of cleansing and refining us from all our human frailties, evil inclinations, wrong urges and impulses, refines our thoughts and motives so we can live in His Love-instincts, and make mankind holy and acceptable before the Almighty, so we may remain enveloped in His Love and Freedom forever. (Rom.5:9; 3:26)

Jesus’ Person represents the very divine fiber, nuance, and modulation of the Tri-Personal Love. In Him we live, move, and walk thus evoking interactive relationship with the holy God. This was what humanity had through the ‘tree of life’ in Eden, but was cut-off through sin and rebellion owing to Adam’s fall. Today Jesus is the filter by which we are cleansed, refined, and made holy in God’s presence. (2 Cor.5:21) This is what our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ does not possess and will not attain without the Person of Jesus who is the embodiment of the identical Love substance in the Father, Son, and Spirit.

Hence, Paul says, “So you also are made complete through your union with Christ, who is the Head over every ruler and authority” (Col.2:10, NLT). You see, as Jesus walks in us through the Spirit’s anointing power, the divine Freedom brings on gradual and certain victories in life thwarting the enemy’s work of darkness; and these victories all add up to discovering genuine and joyful liberties found only in our ‘true self in Christ’ previously incarcerated in sin. In our union with Jesus, we are Freed from all forms of bondage. (Col.2:13-15). Yes, “Jesus has disarmed the powers and authorities of darkness, and made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross” (Col.2:15). All praise be to God, this is the otherworldly miraculous life humans are given and privileged to live in Jesus through the Spirit’s empowering presence. When the Scripture says through Paul, “For when I am weak, then I am strong,” it is affirming the miraculous life in the Spirit’s power which defeat evil and sin which keep us in bondage. (2 Cor.12:10) As the prophet uttered the very words of God, “‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit’, says the LORD of Hosts” (Zech.4:6)

Notice how Paul frames our Freedom through his text to the Christians in Ephesus, “Now God has us where He wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all His idea, and all His work. All we do is trust Him enough to let Him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work He does, the good work He has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing” (Eph.2:7-10, MSG). And the end result is joy and liberty in Love (God).

Unfortunately, through time and deception, Satan has driven a wedge to extricate us from our reality in Jesus Christ and the Godhead. With time and experience, the human uprooting and distance from God has grown wider and further in scope and depth. This is the beautiful truth that was lost from our first home in Eden. But God sent His Son to reestablish this wonderful Edenic truth in all its glory that is humanity’s birthright prior to the fall. (John 3:16-17; Rom.8:12, 36)

Freedom is wrapped up in a Person. Freedom is not some philosophy major one pursues and earns in college. It is not born out of our American history in slavery, although its certain painful legacy can be understood through this aspect of our history. But true Freedom is greater than we realize or we migh care to admit. Freedom is a Person! Freedom is Jesus Christ! (John 8:32, 36; 14:6) It is personified in His Person, in the same way that rebellion and sin is personified in Satan, the devil. (Isa.14:12-15; Ezek.28:14-15) Freedom and bondage, good and evil, are powerful unseen forces which are broadcasted into the human psyche by evil spirits or God’s Spirit. Hence, we are admonished “to test the spirits to see whether they are from God” (1 John 4:1).

Satan and his demonic spirits know of their future where they will be held in hellish prison through their diabolical work of leading humanity down the path of sin and damnation. (2 Pet.2:1-2; Jude 1:6; Rev.20:1-2) We must understand all forms of bondage and slavery in the backdrop of sin and rebellion for living automously apart from God promoted by Satan. Love leads to Freedom and can never promote slavery and bondage in any shape or form, especially spiritually. (Isa.61:1-2; Luk.4:18) Love is a Person! Love is Jesus Christ! God is Love! (1 John 4:8, 16)  

2 Corinthians 3:13. It is so encouraging to know that anyone can have  freedom in Jesus. stock photo 8b7002d4-68b8-44d5-9343-c5b1f82e6a85

If the Love of truth is something we can identify with, then the only way genuine Love and Freedom can enter and become part of humanity is to unify the two lives into One, as in the marriage union, humanity in Jesus and vice versa. Jesus said, “For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it” (Matt.16:25). Mankind will be made one with and in Jesus, as Christ is One with the Father and the Spirit in the trinitarian Godhead. (Matt.28:18-19; 2 Cor.13:14).

Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ explains the incarnation of the divine nature, will and purpose in humanity…Jesus’ presence is the flow of His divinity, His Love, His Freedom, through us to others. In the same evil spirit by which humans are led and held involuntarily in bondage and sin, mankind will be led in the path of Freedom and restorative righteousness through the Holy Spirit. We will be lifted to a fresh and uplifting consciousness opening the pathway to liberty.

And we know this is the prophetic union of humanity’s future glory of one reality and union in Christ, listen, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife (mankind) has made herself ready. And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” (Rev.19:6-9). Only in such blessed union will humanity and God unite and become One in the very essence of divine Love and Freedom as declared in Scripture, “God will be all in all” (1 Cor.15:28).

The very heart and substance of this divine plan began with humanity’s process of rebirth when Jesus said, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again” (John 3:3). Yes, we experience the rebirth, a spiritual incarnation, into the divine dynamic union with Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ and thereby given to have union with the holy God. Paul explains how this process works from our human perspective, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Gal.2:20a). Paul speaks of a death and rebirth process of incarnational conversion.

A rebirth takes place when one life is given up for another to make the two One in Christ. We do not lose our individuality, but actually reclaim it from the evil cocoon and prison into which we have been imprisoned by Satan. Once we were in union with the devil’s rebellion, now we are unified in and with Jesus in Freedom and God’s Love. Jesus made this action on our part abundantly clear when He said, “For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it” (Matt.16:25).

Earlier we saw that humans have two pair of spiritual eyes, one sees Jesus’ light, while the other sees the devil’s light which is Satan’s masquerading “angel of light” which blinds unknowing people to the true light of Jesus. (2 Cor.11:14; John 8:12). Both eyes represent the false self and the true self. It is the false self which place blinders before us so we cannot see the light of Jesus. Jesus said that if you lose the false self, you will be given the eyes of the true self to see Him, “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will find it” (Matt.16:25).  

Further, Paul made reference to our union with Christ, “For Christ’s Love compels us, because we are convinced that One died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again” (2 Cor.5:14-15). And this is what happens in the ritual of baptism, “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” (Rom.6:3-4).

Did you see that? Baptism is the ritual given us by God to memorialize our death and rebirth and enter into the future glorious spiritual marriage union wherein Christ now lives in humans, and vice versa in one glorious unified being. Paul affirms Jesus’ words, saying, “Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new (reborn and redeemed) life has begun!” (2 Cor.5:17, italics mine, NLT). Yes, in baptism we bury the old enslaved life and self we had under Satan, and given rebirth into the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ in Jesus, replicating the one unified life of the Tri-Personal Being of God (Trinity) in the Father, Son, and Spirit. (Matt.28:18-19).

The New Birth – Baptism, An Outward Sign of Inward Reality In Christ. Matt.28:18-19Rom.6:3-7
Fr. Jonel - MONDAY OF THE 2ND WEEK OF EASTER John 3:1-8 Jesus hints  Nicodemus on some of the secrets of the spiritual life. “Unless one is born  anew, he cannot see

Ultimately, Freedom brings mankind to the place in the human journey where we hear, “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! Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children. It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End” (Rev.21:3-7). This is the epitome of humanity’s journey of incarnation into God’s eternal Freedom and Love which ends in immortality and Paradise. (Rev.19:6-9; 21:1-2)

Reflect on this astounding truth, God is divine and we are the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ from Adam. How can we possibly imagine that in our fallen state of being we have the capacity wherewithal to enter the existence of the holy God? It is impossible! Yet, here is the Good News – God makes it possible by giving up His Son by attributing His perfect life upon us which makes our future potential all possible. (2 Cor.5:21; John 6:40) Such is the indescribable wisdom of God, the unfathomable Love of our Father, there is no superlative to articulate its depth, breadth, height, and width. A Love that surpasses all knowledge and transcends every nugget of wisdom by which we are filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. (Eph.3:18-19)

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 is our hope and 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 Immanuel 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, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for the holy God, the Creator’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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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 listed in our ‘archives’ that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now! 

Kiang P. Lee  (Your Servant in Christ)

Appendix: *”Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. He is also clothed in Freedom. For the three Persons of the Trinity are three distinct and free Persons in the triune Godhead. Love and Freedom by nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

***Homoousios: “In Christianity, the key term of the Christological doctrine formulated at the first ecumenical council, held at Nicaea in 325, to affirm that God the Son and God the Father are of the same substance. The Council of Nicaea condemned Arianism, which taught that Christ was more than human but not fully divine. The use of homoousios (Greek: “of one substance”) in the creed produced at the council was meant to put an end to the controversy” – https://www.britannica.com/topic/homoousios).  

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.

2022 – IS HELL REAL?

Greetings Friends! Welcome to the year 2022! I confess that my blog title may seem melodramatic and overdone, but will become self-explanatory subsequently. Entering the New Year we look back over the past one with profound but deliberative reflection. It was a trying year in every way to be sure. Humanity continues to grapple with a global Covid-19 pandemic that is sweeping the earth. As of this writing, the W.H.O. (World Health Organization) has reported a death toll of approximately 5.5 million lives from the dreaded disease, with 284 million confirmed cases in 222 countries and territories and counting. (https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-death-toll/)

Indian Panorama What should humans learn from Covid-19 to avoid bigger  problems in the future? - Indian Panorama
The Covid 19 Pandemic

Aside from the worldwide pandemic, humanity had many other equally broad but urgent issues to deal with such as global warming, climate change and loss of biodiversity, population growth, rising food security and malnutrition, decline in natural resource particularly clean water, the refugee crisis, chemical pollution, eradicating different forms of poverty, weapons of mass destruction, the advent of powerful and uncontrolled new technology, political and national and global failure to understand and act preventatively on these risks. I could go on and on, but suffice to touch upon the few pressing ones outlined above.

Low water levels and dry land was recorded at Storm King Dam near Stanthorpe, Queensland. The dam’s water level was at 25%. DAN PELED/AAP

In this post I would like to draw a parallel between what humanity is undergoing with these urgent issues to the subject of ‘hell.’ What has ‘hell’ to do with it, or with anything for that matter, you may ask. Fair enough, bear with me and I will make the connection obvious enough. The subject of ‘hell’ has been debated over the centuries by philosophers, theologians, and experts on the subject. The aim of this post is not to add to that debate, or to discuss the pros and cons of the different historical perspectives on the topic, vital and volatile as they may be, to the different proponents on the subject. The aim of this post is to take a view of ‘hell’ from the lens of the myriads of pressing issues humanity faces, our moral obligation to them, and how the meaning of ‘hell’ that mankind is experiencing through the many issues humanity is facing today, the here and now, rather than today’s popular meaning of ‘hell’ as a fiery place of suffering in the afterlife, or proponents of adversarial perspectives on the matter.

What I am about to share is scripturally-based, and for all intents and purposes, may illuminate the basis of the foundational understanding of the subject of ‘hell’ itself. For without a doubt the very basis of the concept of ‘hell’ has always had its beginning with a mighty angelic being named Lucifer who metamorphose into Satan because of his revolt against his Creator God. And that is where we begin with my post. Angels are personal spirit beings who have intelligence, emotions, and self-will. (Jude 6) They are ministering spirits sent to serve those who are to inherit salvation. (Heb.1:14)  

(However, before I get into my post, you may be interested in reading about the subject of hell from a historical perspective, you can read an article with a balanced view at this site: https://www.gci.org/articles/the-battle-over-hell/).

California Wildfires Precipitated by Climate Change

Now, to get to my post. In Ezekiel 28:11-19 God gave us a view of ‘hell fire.’ You can say this is the birth place on the subject. The context of this phrase was taken from the passage leading up to Lucifer’s (an angelic being) reasons for his revolt against God and His sovereignty as Creator and eternal Sustainer of life, both spiritual and physical. God actually created a powerful, intelligent, and beautiful angelic being, named Lucifer. He was a mighty angel of God. He was created with exceptional wisdom and as such was called the “Shining Star of the Dawn” (Isa.14:12).

File:Paradise Lost 12.jpg
Lucifer’s Fall, From John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”

In Ezekiel 28, V.18, we read the following, where the passage addresses the King of Tyre, “You defiled your sanctuaries with your many sins and your dishonest trade. So, I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” I emphasize the words, “I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” This is the first mention of a ‘consuming fire’ as it relates to Satan, the fallen angelic being. Although the text was addressed to the King of Tyre, from the descriptions given, it is obvious that no human is addressed. This is speaking of Lucifer as the principal recipient and beneficiary of the message.

Through the Bible, Lucifer or Satan, usually presents himself as speaking through another person, in this case, the King of Tyre. In another instance which we will read, he spoke through the King of Babylon. In the Garden of Eden, he spoke to Adam and Eve through a serpent. Today, he speaks to us “as an angel of light,” but in fact he is the embodiment of darkness. (2 Cor.11:14; Col.1:13) Paul tells us about Satan’s dark world, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph.6:12; Act.26:18).

Europe's refugee crisis explains why border walls don't stop migration
The Refugee Crisis

Something had occurred that changed Lucifer. Something happened so he ceased to be the “Shining Star of the Dawn.” Something drastic took a complete wrong turn which metamorphosed him into God’s adversary. The passage explains, “You (Lucifer) were blameless in all you did from the day you were created until the day evil was found in you … and you sinned” (Ezek.28:15). The passage actually quotes Lucifer’s conceited aims, “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So, I threw you to the earth” (Ezek.28:17).

Lucifer, through his pride, beauty, wisdom, and splendor, allowed his pride to get away and get the better of him. All the spectacularly magnificent things created in him by God led him to irrational pride, and this brought about his rebellion and downfall. God told him, “You sinned. So, I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, guardian cherub” (Ezek.28:16).

“I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.”

In expelling Lucifer from God’s holy presence because of his revolt, God changed him in spirit and he metamorphosed into Satan the Devil, God’s adversary. (1 Pet.5:8) In Revelation, he is called the “accuser of our brethren” (Rev.12:10). For all God’s people he is now our adversary and accuser before God. Now, we see that Satan was actually the influencer and mover behind the King of Tyre in his rule and domain in history. (Read Ezek.28:1-10).

In another passage in Isaiah, it records the actual revolt and rebellion of Lucifer. In that instance, Satan (formerly Lucifer) spoke through the King of Babylon. Lucifer’s rebellion and treasonous act against God is recorded in this way,

“How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the North. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:12-14).

Solving the child malnutrition puzzle | The Indian Express
Poverty and Malnutrition

Take note of Lucifer’s repeated “I will’s” in the above passage. He could accept God as the supreme Creator, or he could choose to be god unto himself. But he chose to be a god blinded by his absurd desire to be Creator and revolt against Almighty God. His repeated “I will’s” show that he chose to defy God and declared himself to be a god and be creator.  Now let us read the passage from Ezekiel, which I quoted partly earlier, but this gives a parallel account of the fall of Lucifer:

“You were in Eden, the garden of God. … I ordained and anointed you as the mighty angelic guardian. “You had access to the holy mountain of God and walked among the stones of fire. “You were blameless in all you did from the day you were created until the day evil was found in you. … and you sinned. “I banished you in disgrace from the mountain of God. “I expelled you, O mighty guardian, from your place among the stones of fire. “Your heart was filled with pride because of all your beauty. Your wisdom was corrupted by your love of splendor. “So I threw you to the ground “By your many sins and dishonest trade you have desecrated your sanctuaries. “So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, “And I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. “All the nations who knew you are appalled at you;you have come to a horrible end and will be no more’” (Ezekiel 28:13-19).

From Lucifer to Satan

From the above, you will have noticed that I have quoted biblical texts about Lucifer’s revolt and subsequent metamorphosing into the evil one, Satan. I did that to show that ‘hell’ or ‘hell fire’ was first uttered against the fallen angel, Lucifer, for his revolt against God, and God said, “So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you” (Ezek.28:18). Paul affirms as to the source of this ‘consuming fire’ which is reserved for those who are opposed to God’s sovereignty over all of creation, “Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire” (Heb.12:28-29)

Moses had warned the people of Israel before entering the Promised Land about observing God’s commands and not deviate from them so that they will prosper and be blessed in the land they will possess. (Deut.4:1-2, 9, 25-26) For if they rebelled and disobeyed God they will face hardship, suffering, and failure, “for the Lord your God is a consuming fire” (Deut.4:24). The ‘consuming fire’ will come as consequence of their actions against God (Love), as it did with Lucifer. Subsequently, many years and equally many kings and rulers, Israel was carried away as a slave nation again for their revolt against God their Maker.

Yes, Lucifer (Satan) was warned of a ‘consuming fire’ from within for revolting against the Creator, just as ancient Israel was warned. Jerusalem was burnt to the ground by the Babylonians more than 2600 years ago. (https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4739152/The-Babylonians-DID-burn-Jerusalem.html; also Jer.52:12-14) Without a doubt, a ‘consuming fire’ did destroy the kings of Tyre and Babylon and their physical empire and dominion are a matter of historical records. This is what the end of any human kingdom or dominion looks like that become unwitting partners of Satan’s unseen but dark spiritual dominion. They ended up in utter ruin. The birth of the concept of hell fire had always begun with the rebellion of Lucifer and his angelic beings. (Rev.12:4) In other words, ‘hell’ could not exist without Satan.

We see in the beginning of Ezekiel’s passage that Lucifer dwelt in Eden as did Adam and Eve, mankind’s first parents. (Gen.2:8, 15) Our first parents must have observed the splendor and wisdom God placed in Lucifer, perhaps unaware of his corruption by rebellion, and his masquerade of hiding behind the appearance of an ‘angel of light’ in the form of a serpent that was known for its craftiness and cunning. (2 Cor.11:14; Gen.3:1-4) Eve’s weakness was she envied Lucifer’s (now Satan’s corrupt) wisdom. Eve wanted what Lucifer (Satan) had, and he lied about the forbidden fruit as “desirable for gaining wisdom so she took some and ate it.” (Gen.3:6). She was deceived into thinking the forbidden fruit was her answer in her search for wisdom. Eve shared Satan’s exchange with Adam, and he consentingly and rather gullibly ate the forbidden fruit.

Through Adam and Eve, all humanity was bequeathed the ‘fallen Adamic humanity.’ A humanity that has lost its way because it followed Satan into his domain of darkness. (Col.1:13; Eph.6:12) They had forsaken the Creator’s way of Love they were created to become. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:16) This way of Love was depicted in our parents through the Tree of Life, which they had partaken of and related with God in Love. (Gen.2:9; 3:24)

Let us be cognizant of this reality that the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was not ‘evil’ or ‘sinful’ of itself. It was planted by God in Eden, Adam and Eve’s garden home. (Gen.2:15) It was God’s gift to teach our parents knowledge of good from evil. Recall, they were created adults, they were never babies, had no childhood, they never grew up as teens or young grownups. The tree of life, also planted by God, taught them God’s Love and spiritual principles and promises. One was human and the other divine.

Depiction of The Tree of Life, And The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil

However, for that brief period of time God tested them. (Psa.66:10; Gen.22:1; Deut.8:2) They were forbidden to go near the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, let alone touch it. (Gen.3:3) God tested them to see if they will rely upon their knowledge acquired from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil whereby human wisdom is apprehended, or upon God’s sovereign Word (Truth/Love) from the tree of life. They were not restricted in any way from eating from it, or any other tree in the Garden, with the exception of one. (Gen.2:16-17) It was a matter of choice, it was a matter of freedom. And we know how Satan exploited the situation and deceived our first parents.

God blesses us with the gift of freedom (free will), as such He tests us as He will do all His human children, beginning with Adam and Eve. But this is His promise, “No temptation (test) has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted (tested) beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted (test), He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Cor.10:13; Deut.8:5). God tests his human children out of His great Love for them. (Heb.12:6; Prov.3:11-12; Psa.94:12) This is the the surrendered live we are given the privilege of living in Christ. (1 John 4:16)

Today, we have our educational system which dessiminate and teach us all kinds of knowledge in whatever field of discipline we desire to pursue. Then, there is God’s eternal truth founded upon His sovereign Love and will. Today, we have access to knowledge as our first parents had access to the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The question is, do we make gods of our know-hows, skills, talents, and human wisdom and intelligence, as Lucifer did? Do we allow human pride to dominate us to the extent that we imagine we can live autonomously from our Creator? That we do not need God or His Love in our lives? Or that we overlook and even ignore the most important knowledge humans can have and treasure in respect to our Maker’s purpose for creating humanity in the first place? (Gen.1:26-27; Eph.4:24; Col.3:10-15; 1 John 4:16) We have a choice of living the autonomous life from God or the surrendered life in His Love. (1 John 4:16)

When the second Adam (Jesus) came on the scene in God’s time, He taught us the right response to Satan’s temptation about intellect, success, pride, and autonomy. He repulsed and rejected Satan’s deceptive mantras, declaring sternly, “It is written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test’” (Matt.4:7). An overpowering phrase which sums up God’s sovereignty that’s unanimous and unopposed and no gainsayers may contend nor contest. For no one living may take liberty to tempt God. (Deut.6:16; Psa.78:18) God’s Love and character is flawless beyond reproach, and to sow doubt by baiting is abhorrent and anathema to Him. (1 John 4:8) James tell us, “For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone” (Jam.1:13). God tests His human children, He never tempts them. (Heb.12:6) There is a difference between ‘test’ and ‘tempt.’ God ‘test’ his children out of His Love; the devil ‘tempts’ humans in order to lead them to rebellion, sin, and destruction. (1 Pet.5:8) We can live the life of autonomy and rebellion to the Creator, or we can live the surrendered life in Christ.

The manner in which Jesus responds to Satan ought always to be our response when Satan tempts humans to defy God’s truth for human knowledge or any form of pride-filled autonomy. By stating, “It is written…” Jesus taught us to choose God’s revelation by virture of His Loving principles and sure promises over autonomy from God through pride and self aggrandizement. And therein lies the crux of all human dilemma and mankind’s ills and troubles, and by extension having to experience the identical ‘consuming fire’ of the devil, or live in the Love and harmony of the Creator and “inherit all things” with Christ in God’s divine edict. (Rev.21:7) Jesus has given the template of how to live the surrendered life to God’s Love. As John reflects on this, saying, “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by Himself; He can do only what He sees His Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19; Matt. 26:39). (Read my Blog about the Four Temptations of Jesus at: http://bulamanriver.net/20216)

Adam and Eve Banished From Eden by God’s Holy Angel for Following in The Footsteps of Lucifer (Satan)

Lucifer had freewill with which he could individually make choices. So did Adam and Eve and humanity descended from them. Freedom was God’s gift, and it came with the responsibility to show care and used for good (Love). (Gal.5:22; Psa.23:6) Paul said this about utilizung God’s Love and our Freedoms, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph.2:10). Lucifer could only come to the conclusion that God is Love and He was his omnipotent Creator by faith – the same for Adam and Eve and all humanity today.

Paul said, “As it is written: “The righteous will live by faith” (Rom.1:17; Hab.2:4) Faith is the lifeblood of our spirit life, like blood is to the human body. The Bible says the foundation of human existence is in the blood, likewise so is faith to spiritual life. (Lev.17:11) The Bible says pointedly, “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).

So, through faith Lucifer was given the freedom of choice and also for all humanity. Lucifer chose he would be god unto himself, so did our first parents after they followed him in their disobedience and rebellion. He had faith in himself through his revolt and sin. (read about the Living Faith of Jesus at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946) Today we have many people who don’t believe in God or in spiritual matters, and condemn those who do as showing ‘blind’ faith. They fail to realize that what they accuse others of, they themselves do likewise. There is no difference. They have faith in what they espouse apart from God’s revelation for humanity through his Word (Holy Bible), which we embrace. Their masquerade is known in the Bible as hypocrisy. (Luk.6:42; Rom.2:1, 5; Rom.10:3; Jam.2:19, 23). So, they live by their brand of human faith (autonomy from God), as we live by ours through divine revelation through Christ, the living Word. (John 1:1, 14) That is the unmistakeable difference.

So, because of his revolt against his Creator, Lucifer was no longer the “Shining One.” He was blinded by the splendor God created him and became. He doubted God and His supremacy in all creation and the universe. Now Satan’s dominion is ‘darkness.’ (Col.1:13) He is called the ‘accuser.’ (Rev.12:10) He is the devil, which means ‘adversary.’ (1 Pet.5:8, ESV)

“Without Faith It Is Impossible To Please God” (Heb.11:6)

Now, let us quickly revisit the message of the King of Tyre, and by extension principally to Satan in the passage in Ezekiel 28:18. We read that because of Lucifer’s sin of having faith in his revolt against God and be a god unto himseld, God has brought a fire from within him (Satan) to consume him, “You defiled your sanctuaries with your many sins and your dishonest trade. So, I brought fire out from within you, and it consumed you.” The King of Tyre is a type of fallen humanity resulting from Adam’s fall to sin in Eden and followed Satan down his destructive path.

This passage is speaking to both the physical King of Tyre, upon whom the prophecy was fulfilled who has long since passed and disappeared from history. But the prophecy was uttered upon Satan as well, but with a ‘consuming fire’ that is not physical for the devil is a fallen angelic being. The physical fire upon Tyre had done its work and is now recorded in the annals of history. But not so spiritual fire, which is perpetual and still ‘consuming.’

What is this ‘consuming fire’ spoken of here? The ‘consuming fire’ has to do with the many sins and dishonest trade. This is referring to the reign of physical King of Tyre, but also with Satan. With Lucifer (Satan) it refers primarily to his sin of rebellion and his deception of humanity, we read in Isaiah, “You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the North. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” And his “many other sins” emanating from his revolt against God, and all that his Creator stood for.

Everything else Satan may have influenced the Kings of Tyre and Babylon to do in their reign was peripheral to his revolt against his Creator. For Satan, because he is a fallen spirit angelic being, his revolting idea lives on because it is an unfulfilled desire of Satan, who possesses unending spirit life in his fallen angelic being. A discontented, frustrated, failed, and unhappy life is of itself a ‘consuming fire.’ And fallen mankind is no different, as we’ll see.

We have seen what this ‘consuming fire’ means to Satan, however, since the King of Tyre represents humanity, we also have a fire burning from within us on account of Adam’s fall at the hands of Satan. (Rom.5:12; Gen.3:1-6) Human beings are not composed of spirit as angelic beings like Lucifer (Satan). Humans are mortal and subject to emaciation and death. Even though humanity is physical and has a limited lifespan, he continues to exist in perpetuity through human procreation and posterity, and more importantly through the human spirit (mind). Thereby, in a manner of speaking, through the human mind we have an infinite (physical) lineage and thereby inherit the ‘consuming fire’ of Satan from within us as well. Through the fallen mind we perpetuate the ‘consuming fire.’

Through The Human Mind (Spirit) and Procreation Humanity Have An Infinite Lineage

What is that fire? The ‘consuming fire’ are all the issues mankind is faced with which we have covered anecdotally at the beginning of this post, and even more so as to the human sin-condition inherited through rebellion. The issues and problems mankind experienced have been sown in rebellion, incubated in sin, and passed down generationally while draped in the various human issues and problems at different epochs of human history down to our day. Whatever they were, they represent humanity’s ‘consuming fire.’ What humanity has done through the ages since Adam were established and done through the power of and within the dark domain of Satan, the devil, the ruler and god of this fallen world.

Paul said this, “The god of this age (Satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” (2 Cor.4:4, italics mine; also, Act 26:18). By forsaking the divine Love of God through His Spirit, they have instead turned-on the  ‘consuming fire’ of rebellion and sin from within the humanity that is gripping and haunting us.

Lucifer chose to become autonomous from God instead of the surrendered life of God’s Love, and continues to defy God to this day. His revolt changed him and he became Satan the devil (the ‘accuser’ and ‘adversary’). The heart of the test of Adam’s freewill was the same as that of Lucifer; it was just draped with a different attire. They both chose to be a god to themselves. This was a revolt against the Creator to see who will be God. The same freedom of choice afforded to both Lucifer and Adam, humanity faces today in the world we live where Satan tempts humans like he has from the start in Eden. So, because Satan is a spirit being in his fallen angelic being, his sin lives on, and his revolting sin lives on in him like an unquenchable and ‘consuming fire.’ God tells us that He is the “consuming fire” that destroy all evil. (Heb.12:29; Exo15:7)

As humans, we can choose to think, desire, and act against God’s Loving will. When that happens, which humans do in Satan’s world, it turns into and remain a ‘consuming fire’ in our hearts because everything which are done contrary and in revolt to God’s eternal truth in His Love will never be fulfilled. Anything which stands up to and against God’s (Love’s) will remain unfulfilled and destroyed in the ‘consuming fire.’ (Heb.12:29; Psa.97:3; Isa. 33:14)

Now, the King of Tyre was in actuality typifying fallen humanity. This connection is vital to understand and keep in mind. Paul said this about the Holy Scriptures, “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope” (Rom.15:4). Humanity remains a fallen human species from Adam’s sin in Eden. In the same manner Satan’s sin and revolting spirit who was banished from God’s presence remains a ‘consuming fire,’ the same rebellious spirit lives on in the fallen human mind.

The human mind was created to enable humans learn to emulate God’s likeness, that is, to give humans the ability to have a relationship of Love with God and our fellow humans. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:7-12; Mar.12:30-31) John said, “Dear friends, since God so Loved us, we also ought to Love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we Love one another, God lives in us and His Love is made complete in us” (1 John 11-12). However, being his old spiritual revolting fallen angelic being that he is, Satan led mankind through Adam to follow his rebellious ways. So we read Paul, saying this, “Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other Person obeyed God (Jesus Christ), many will be made righteous” (Rom.5:19, NLT).  

We don’t seem to have answers for all the ills facing humanity today. Humanity is faced with issues that are global in nature and burns like a fire that is consuming us in its destructive path. We cannot resolve them even if we wanted to. We are chained in the devil’s prison for we have followed his revolting ways of sin. Satan’s strategy has always been to enlist mankind to join him – by tempting them to succumb to the same choice that he made – to blind them to love themselves and become autonomous from God, and defy the Creator, and suffer the consequences of rebellion: “fire coming out from within you, that consume you” (Ezek.28:18). Most human conflicts and warfare, including the recent first and second World Wars were mankind witnessing and experiencing the ‘consuming fire’ of Satan blazing and smoldering from within humanity. Or, we can live the miraculous life through the surrendered mindset to God’s Love and grace.

Shelling in Donbass brings Europe to brink of war - World Socialist Web Site
War in Europe 2022

Since Adam’s fall, he has succeeded in propping himself as a god to fallen humanity, albeit hiding behind idols we treasure as we saw in the case of the ancient kings of the empires of Tyre and Babylon, and even a crafty serpent to our first parents. (Gen.3:1) He started with Adam and Eve and succeeded, and that is how humanity was bequeathed with the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ where we are imprisoned in the sin-condition and rebellion of the evil one to this day. It is worth repeating Paul’s summation of the human condition, and ultimate salvation, “Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other Person (Jesus) obeyed God, many will be made righteous” (Rom.5:19, NLT).

Spirituality, Dreams and Prophecy: The Spiritual Meaning of the Serpent in  the Garden of Eden
Satan Speaking through a Wily Serpent as He did Through Ancient Kings Of Tyre and Babylon

What must humanity do? After the fall of Adam, God promised to send His Son, the second Adam, to enter and take our humanity unto Himself and become our Savior. Yes, Jesus Christ, the second Person of the trinitarian Godhead, was sent by the Father to save us from the sin-condition humans were consigned and imprisoned in by Satan. (Gen.3:15; Isa.7:14; John 3:16-17; 1 Cor.15:45; Col.1:27; Eph.1:7; 18-23). The message of the Gospel from God is humanity must be reborn into a new species of human beings – from the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ of Adam held under Satan’s sway, to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus Christ, empowered in God’s Spirit and Love. (Rom.5:12; 5:1, 15; 5:5)

What do I mean by the terms ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ (of Adam), and the ‘Redeemed Immanuel humanity’ (of Jesus Christ)? After the fall of Adam in Eden, God uttered a prophetic statement which ushered in a new beginning for mankind unlike any seen or experienced in human history which would define human destiny.

God said to Satan who had precipitated the fall of Adam and Eve through deception and pretense, “So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this (deceived Eve to disobey and eat the forbidden fruit), I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel” (Gen.3:14, 15, italics my emphasis). The Message Bible renders this verse as follows, “I’m declaring war between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers. He’ll wound your head, you’ll wound his heel.”

This is the first prophecy of the coming of Christ, the Messiah and Savior. Not only is this a prophecy of His birth, but it is a prophecy of His work. By saying, “He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel,” God is predicting the defeat of Satan by the coming of Christ, our Redeemer. God is drawing the battle lines between Himself and Satan. God draws a distinction between “your seed” (Satan’s seed) which is the ‘fallen Adamic humanity,’ and “her Seed” (Jesus) refers to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ – the incarnation of Christ. (You may read my post on the topic of Incarnation at:  http://bulamanriver.net/18857)  

The famed theologian Thomas F. Torrance said, “Everything would be emptied of evangelical and saving import if Jesus Christ were not fully, completely, entirely man, as well as God” (The Trinitarian Faith, Pg.146). Yes, Jesus was fully God and fully human, a completely new human to appear upon earth. He was the Immanuel or “God with us” human being. (Matt.1:23).

From the above, we see there are only two forms of humans created in God’s likeness that has ever existed and walked upon this earth. (Gen.1:26-27; Luk.1:26-31; 1 Cor.15:45) Both originate from the Creator. We are all God’s creation through the first Adam and the second Adam, Jesus. Paul said, “The Scriptures tell us, “The first man, Adam, became a living person. But the last Adam—that is, Christ—is a life-giving Spirit” (1 Cor.15:45; Act.17:28;)

The first Adam was created from the dust of the earth, perfect and sinless until his fall at the hands of the devil. (Gen.3:1-24) The second Adam resulted from the incarnation of Jesus Christ when God the Father gave us His Son as Savior. The Gospel of Matthew recites the prophecy of Isaiah, “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”)” Matthew adds, “She will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins” (Matt.1:23, 21; Isa.7:14)

Through the first Adam’s sin, mankind was consigned to a life of spiritual imprisonment under the rebellious sin-condition of the devil. Humanity was cut off from access to God and His Spirit (Tree of Life) because of sin. (Gen.3:24) Through Adam’s fall the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ came to be which is fashioned in the devil’s likeness. Then there is the second new humanity Jesus brought from God the Father. God used the prophet Isaiah to announce His coming in the beautiful prophecy, “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:22-23, KJV). Thus, the new humanity of Jesus is referred to the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ fashioned after Jesus’ image. (1 Cor.15:45; Rom.8:29)

So, Jesus was the second human creation after Adam, but being fully human and fully God, or “Immanuel” meaning, “God with us.” (Isa7:14; Matt.1:23; 1 Cor.15:45) All humanity descended from the first Adam, and now God calls upon humans to adopt the gift of His Son’s ‘Immanuel (God with us) humanity’ through whom eternal life is conferred upon humanity. (John 3:16-17) Therefore, the title “Immanuel” denotes the difference between Jesus’ new redeemed humanity and Adam’s fallen corrupt and sin-conditioned humanity.

Through Jesus’ physical mother, Mary, God assimilated Himself with and in mankind through His Son, and conversely Christ forever joins humans with God forever, through the ‘Immanuel’ (‘God with us’ human). However, there is a proviso, from our human/mortal focal point, this process of exchanged life (rebirth/new birth) cannot be done arbitrarily. A person has to make a freewill choice, he/she has to choose for herself/himself. Individually and separately, a person has to make a choice of wanting to become part of the new human species God is preparing for His eternal Kingdom – the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. Peter made this abundantly clear on the Day of Pentecost when God sent His Spirit, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “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). ‘Repent’ symbolize change, and ‘baptize’ is metaphor for rebirth.

Paul wrote to Timothy and said, “He (God the Father) has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of His own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Tim.1:9-10).

The New Birth – Baptism, An Outward Sign of Inward Reality. Matt.28:18-19; Rom.6:3-7

What we have read above from Paul’s words is God’s call upon humans to live in true Freedom in His Son’s ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ through Jesus’ role as Savior and eternal Mediator. Freedom (free will) is divine and part of God’s eternal nature. Freedom is the flip side of God’s Love nature. God is not Love without Freedom, nor is He Freedom without Love. John tells us, “God is Love.” (1 John 4:8). To the Galatians, Paul said, “It is for Freedom that Christ has set you Free” (Gal.5:1). You cannot have Love without Freedom, nor Freedom without Love – they are one and the same quality within the one divine nature of God. God is Free, the embodiment of it, and wants nothing less for His saved children. To exist without sin in holiness is to live in true Freedom. (Gal.5:1; John 8:32) John’s Gospel tell us this, “So if the Son sets you Free, you will be Free indeed” (John 8:36, emphasis mine).

The Bible quotes God as saying, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts…My word that goes out from My mouth: It will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace” (Isa.55:8-9, 11-12). God inherently expresses genuine Freedom through the celestial Love which opens pathways in the mindscape of thoughts, concepts, and perceptions rooted in the divine, which is unknown and beyond the capacity of our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ to comprehend, much less live by.

In this physical life we define human freedoms in many ways like economic and financial freedoms, emotional freedom, women’s rights, political freedom, civil liberties, freedom from all forms of tyranny, fundamental rights, freedom of speech, religion, and assembly, etc. There is only one true Freedom which brings genuine capacity and wholeness to the human persona which is modelled in Christ’s likeness. (Rom.8:29; John 8:36). In a nutshell, humanity’s destiny is to become a species in the Creator God’s likeness and live in true Freedom. (Gen.1:26-27; Gal.5:1; John 8:36)

Kygo - Freedom (Lyrics) ft. Zak Abel - YouTube
Freedom, Flipside of God’s Divine Nature of Love

But how does a person Freely choose God’s Love, and become children of the divine? Jesus explains how a human being is given a rebirth into the new human species…the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. Jesus said, “Unless you are born again (given/anointed in spiritual rebirth), you cannot see the Kingdom of God” (John 3:3, NLT, brackets my emphasis). To be born again is to experience the new birth in the power of the Holy Spirit. The ritual of ‘baptism’ is the outward physical representation of this new rebirth taking place inwardly…in the heart and mind of saved humans. (read.. Rom.6:3-7).

Jesus’ departing commission to His disciples was, “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” (Matt.28:18-19). Yes, Jesus emphasized the importance of this new birth humans must undergo through baptism, and clearly gave it to His disciples as a prime mission.

Listen, Jesus goes on to say, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again” (John 3:5-7). Paul said, Jesus is the second Adam, “The first man Adam became a living being. But the last Adam, that is Christ – is a life-giving Spirit” (1 Cor.15:45, NLT).

Light, Peace, Hope, Pentecost, Sunbeam
The Holy Spirit Is The Power of God That Gives Birth To The Spiritual Life In Jesus’ New “Redeemed Immanuel Humanity”

When we receive Jesus as personal Savior, we receive Him in His resurrected form and stature through the life-giving Holy Spirit. Thereby, Paul said this about the believer’s reality in Christ, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6). Paul added, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?” (1 Cor.3:16). Yes, saved humanity through Jesus in the Spirit’s power have been made to appear before the Almighty’s very Seat of Mercy to humbly offer our worship, gratitude, petitions, and praise. (Heb.4:14-16; Col.1:27) Paul said, “So then, it does not depend on man’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy” (Rom.9:16).

What is the mercy seat? | Bibleinfo.com
43 Mercy Seat ideas | mercy seat, bible history, the tabernacle
The “Mercy Seat” Upon The Ark of The Covenant Depicted in Ancient Israel

Jesus said this about the Spirit’s activity in humans, “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come. He 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 16:13-15). So, we see from Jesus’ words how the Tri-Personal God (Trinity) is at work in human life through the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! (Matt.28:18-19)

From the above account of the new birth humans can receive (freely and voluntarily), we see that through Jesus’ physical mother, Mary, God assimilated Himself in mankind through His Son, and conversely Christ forever joins mankind to God, and ultimately for eternity when He glorified His (and our) humanity in His (Christ’s) own resurrection from death to immortal life.

By assimilating Himself and becoming Immanuel (human/divine – “God with us”), Jesus subjected Himself to all the power and sway of our corrupt sinful nature while remaining perfect and sinless. (Heb.2:14; Rom.8:3-4) Hence, through His ‘new Immanuel humanity’ He redeemed mankind from the sin-condition of the devil by living the perfect life and finally dying as our sinless sacrifice upon His cross. Paul said, “He (Jesus) canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross” (Col.2:14). Further Paul affirms, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (1 Cor.5:21). All this make up a life of faith in the Creator God’s plan of rescuing humanity through and in His unfathomable Love.

“I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me” Gal.2:20

What must happen to our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’? Paul answers emphatically, “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, KJB). By saying, “I am crucified with Christ:” Paul explains what happened to our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ – Jesus took it to Calvary and crucified it upon His cross once for all, so we can be redeemed from the burden of its curse. Paul affirmed the removal of the curse telling the Romans, “We know that our old self (fallen Adamic humanity) was crucified with Him so that the body of sin might be rendered powerless, that we should no longer be slaves to sin” (Rom.6:6, italics my emphasis).

As Paul continues saying, “nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me,” he is speaking of Christ our Mediator living in us through His resurrected life in the Spirit’s power, His ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ This verse (Gal.2:20) speaks eloquently of the process of the spiritual rebirth. Then Paul goes on, “And the life I now live in the body, I live by the faith of the Son of God,” he explains that the conviction by which you and I live from here on is empowered by Jesus’ very Personal faith (not our limited human faith) in the power of the Spirit.

(This verse in Galatians 2:20 has properly translated the phrase, “the faith of Jesus” taken from the King James Version, not “faith in Jesus” like other modern versions. When the preposition “of” is used, it speaks in the possessive case of Jesus’ own Personal faith external from us; and when “in” is used (incorrectly) it speaks of the weakness of the internal ‘human faith’ in Jesus, which is inadequate and unworkable in the spiritual realm. We cannot have “faith in Jesus” without the “faith of Jesus.” You may want to read my blog about faith at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946)  

The Faith Of Jesus

Paul reciting an Old Testament passage says this about faith, “But my righteous one will live by faith. And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back” (Heb.10:38). Together with Paul’s assertion in Galatians 2:20, we understand that when faith is spoken of it refers to Jesus’ spiritual and powerful living faith. Let us not shrink back from receiving and relying upon Jesus’ living, Personal, faith for He is our hope to glory.

Jesus, by doing all of God’s work as shown by Paul above, opened the door to the new species of ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ that mankind can now receive and adopt through Jesus’ Personal living faith that’s now joined to the divine nature of God in Christ. (Heb.2:17; 4:15) It was God’s way of restituting humanity from Satan’s plan of taking mankind down his path of revolt, rebellion, and the sin of being gods unto themselves, and instead to live ton surrendered life in Christ. Paul speaks of our new ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus in this fashion, “Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new (redeemed) life has begun!” (2 Cor.5:17, italics mine, NLT). A life of such deep conviction without exception requires the living Personal faith of Jesus.

Jesus’ victory over sin and Satan generates a condition of righteousness in the believer (right standing with God) through His ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ (Matt.4:1-11; Gen.3:6, 11) We must not overlook nor bypass the wondrous truth of Jesus’ High Priesthood today. Jesus is humanity’s High Priest who Mediates for us day and night before the Father’s presence so we may be recipients of the flow of God’s uninterrupted grace from His glorious throne. The Bible tells us, “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). (You may read my post, “Born For His Highly Priestly Role And Function” at: http://bulamanriver.net/11230).

The ‘fallen Adamic humanity lives in spiritual darkness, while the second, the ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ walks in God’s light.  (Matt.4:16) Jesus went about in the Spirit’s power doing all manner of good and performed many miracles to alleviate the people’s suffering. (Act.10:38) One produces sin and death, and the other brings life, healing and immortality. (John 11:25; 14:6; Rom.6:23)

Through Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ He lived a perfect life on earth, and offered Himself as the only worthy sacrifice upon Calvary for all human sins and transgressions. God raised Him from the dead and He lives today as mankind’s High Priest in heaven clothed in both human/divine form and stature, forever mediating for mankind in God’s presence in the heavenly temple of Himself, and in the earthly temple of the heart of saved humanity…”Christ in us, the hope of glory” (1 Cor.3:16; 6:19; Col.1:27).

The purpose of the second ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus is to substitute for the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ of Adam so humanity may be given to enter God’s holy presence. Jesus did not come to save us in our old corrupt, depraved, and ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ that was sired by the devil. The prophet Jeremiah said our ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ is “beyond cure.” (Jer.17:9) He came to nail it on His cross, and give us a new birth through His resurrection into the new ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ Paul makes this clear, “God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col.1:27). Yes, it is only through Christ that mankind is made holy and enter the presence of Almighty God.

Hidden Truth
The Glorious Riches of God’s Mystery: Christ In You The Hope Of Glory

The Scriptures goes on, “Do not think about how to gratify the natural desires of the flesh, (‘fallen Adamic humanity’), but instead clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ” (‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’) (Rom.13:14, italics my emphasis). Jesus, the ‘Immanuel human,’ was given to mankind as a gift from God the Father. (John 3:16) The ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ was consigned to a life under the sin-condition where Satan and his demonic spirits continue to imprison fallen mankind in the devil’s ‘consuming fire.’ The ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus frees humans from incarceration of the enemy’s sin-condition and prison and brings true freedom in the righteousness of God.

Paul said emphatically, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (1 Cor. 5:21). Instead of the ‘consuming fire’ humanity will enter and inherit Paradise which was lost initially through Adam’s fall in Eden. John tells us more about our Paradisal environment, as we’ll see later.

Paul said this about the new reborn life, “You have taken off your old self (‘fallen Adamic humanity’) with its practices and have put on the new self, (‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’) which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (Col.3:9-10, italics my emphasis; also Gen.1:26-27). Taking on Jesus’ ‘new redeemed Immanuel humanity’ is the essence of the New Covenant, listen to the language to the new covenant, “I will put a new Spirit (‘redeemed Immanuel human’) within you; and I will take the stony heart (‘fallen Adamic human’) out of their flesh, and I will give them a heart of flesh: that they may walk in my statutes, and keep my ordinances, and do them: and they will be my people, and I will be their God” (Ezek.11:19-20, italics my emphasis; Heb.8:10). Now, in conclusion…

The Ending: The Bible reveals Satan’s end in this way, “And the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur, into which the beast and the false prophet had already been thrown. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev.20:10, BSB). Of course, among those punished are the incorrigible part of mankind of the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ who have stubbornly refused to accept God’s mercy and the gift of His Son as Savior. Yes, as we read from the start, the ‘consuming fire’ is real, but not for saved humanity. (John 3:16) The genesis of the concept of hell fire began with rebellious Lucifer and his fallen angelic beings. In other words, hell would not exist without Satan and his cohorts. (Rev.12:4)

The New Beginning – Future of Humanity: All of mankind who have received Jesus as Savior and given the rebirth through the Holy Spirit into the new human species of Christ’s ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity.’ (John 3:3, 5-7) Humanity is made God’s very children fashoined in His Love image, inheriting God’s eternal Kingdom. When all things will have been restituted to God’s eternal will and plan, we hear God utter the following words, “I am making everything new! Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true. It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children” (Rev.20:5-7).

John recorded his vision at this future glorious flashpoint in time, saying, he saw the new Paradise, “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 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” (Rev.21:1-4),

Jesus says to us, “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else. So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom…Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be” (Luk.12:31,32,34, NLT). The Bible promises, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory” (Rom.8:17).

As the newborn species of humanity we will never entertain any thought of living autonomously from God’s sovereign Love, for through Christ we have been made to live the surrendered life as part of the very triune Love nature in God. (1 John 4:16) Our human destiny is forever tied to His Word and sure promises. (2 Pet.1:4). Note the Scriptural reference regarding His promise, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.” (Rom.8:17).

Heirs of God’s “Love Personality”

To become “heirs of God” is not identical with Lucifer’s (Satan’s) bizarre ‘take over’ scheme of revolting against his Creator. Rather to become “heirs of God” is to become heirs of who God is in His Love Personality, for “God is Love” by nature and personality. (1 John 4:8, 16; Gen.1:26-27). That is to say we become “Love Personality” as God is the supreme LOVE PERSONALITY in His Tri-Personal Being (Trinity). Through God’s Love Personality all creation is held together in harmony in the mantle of His power and Love, in all things both seen and unseen. To “share in His glory” means to share in His Triune Love Being by becoming “Love Personality” in our own right as the Bible affirms humanity was created in God’s Love image. (Gen.1:26-27; Psa.82:6; John 10:33-35)

The Book of Revelation tells us, “The one who overcomes will inherit all things, and I will be his God and he will be My son” (Rev.21:7). By saying, “the one who overcomes,” the statement beckons to our conscience about Lucifer’s and Adam’s original sin of revolting against the Creator and to never follow the path of autonomy from the Creator God, and the need to “overcome” such rebellious spirit which continues to abide in humans from the fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of our first parents. To “inherit all things” means the earth and all creation, coupled with becoming the very spiritual “Love Personality” of God’s likeness, and conferred immortality. (1 Cor.15:54)

Let me add that by inheriting the “Love Personality” (nature) of the divine means humanity can never rebel or revolt against God. How so? Simply because inheriting the divine nature of Love and Freedom means we are granted hypostatic union with God in Christ, so it is implausible to rebel, let alone implement. When we will become Love Personalities made immortal in the resurrection, we will intuitively and spontaneously, “Love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our mind and with all our strength” (Mar.12:30). God is not a inward looking or self-serving Being. That is how the fallen human mind think about this first commandment. “God is Love,” self-sufficient and self perpetuating, and needs nothing from us or for that matter His creation. He is the Uncreated and we are the created. The created needs its Creator, not the reverse. God created mankind to become Love as He Is, which means we will live at the level of consciousness of His divine Love existence. (1 John 4:16; Gen.1:26-27).

Understand, when we will have been resurrected and enter God’s spiritual realm, we will have been made immortal with Love Personalities like God. We now reflect God…He is our reality by nature and being. Therefore, to revolt against God would be suicidal…self-destructive. That was Lucifer’s choice. Paul said, “No one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church” (Eph.5:29). Rebeling against and harming onself is a self-destructive urge which we should naturally steer clear of whatever the circumstace…but God help us, how pernicious self-serving pride can blind and overtake us (as it did Lucifer), if we choose to go down that infernal path.

The Bible states “It is impossible for those who have experienced the good things of heaven and shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the Word of God and the power of the age to come, and who then turn away from God” (Heb.6:4-6). Further, the Scripture promises, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who Love Him” (1 Cor.2:9, BSB). All of saved humanity will live harmoniouly in God’s Love in perpetual joy, and everlasting glory.

Yes, humanity will never be able to plumb the depth of God’s Love for His people. Further Paul encourages us, “That Christ (Redeemed Immanuel humanity) may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in Love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the Love of Christ,  and to know this Love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Eph.3:17-19, italics my emphasis).

Paul gave us a practical example of how we are made to become one with God through His Love, saying, “Let patience (patience is a fruit of Love…1 Cor.13:4) have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing” (Jam.1:4). This ‘perfect work’ is a process happening across the broad spectrum of God’s Love-fruits Paul taught and revealed in 1 Corinthians 13. This life of Love defines for us the template of Jesus’ own surrendered life. (John 5:19) (Read all about the Spirit’s Love-Fruits at: http://bulamanriver.net/25496)

Patience – A Fruit of Love

The full act of God across the broad spectrum of His Love and Love-fruits reveals the act of perfection where Love is the power which has no want or lack but is complete in and of itself and fully self-functional while personally inter-dependent in God’s trinitarian likeness. The ‘Immanuel human’ will be deficient in nothing, but one with and undivided in the Creator God’s triunity. Without Love we are nothing, but with the triune Love we are all that we can be in God’s divine and eternal wellbeing for His beloved human children. (1 Cor.1:1) (Read my post, “Living God’s Love Day By Day” at: http://bulamanriver.net/16467)

Holistically, “inheriting all things” means essentially to receive eternal life as the most vital gift humans can receive from God the Father. (Rom.8:11) For without immortality all God’s promises are mere pipe dreams and illusions. The Bible states, “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor.15:54-58).

Let us ask as we contemplate our human destiny, what more can a human being created in God’s image ask for it is “your Father’s great pleasure to give you the Kingdom” and to become heir of “all things” with His Son? (Luk.12:32; Matt.16:26)

Humanity is collectively accountable for the conditions we face in the world today, be it good or bad. Nothing happens in isolation, for what is happening on the other side of our earth impacts everyone. The Covid 19 Pandemic attest to that fact, and so does the climate crisis. As the year 2022 rolls in, perhaps the most pertinent question we ask ourselves is, are we prepared to let our better angels come through for us in the form of our true self in Jesus’ ‘redeemed Immanuel humanity’? How wonderful to live life in such a exquisite new human reality with an equally creative and restorative consciousness greet the year for a better future for our loved ones, our neighbors, and all mankind?

Jesus gives us pertinent advice about how to live in this world, “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes” (Matt.6:34, The Message).

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 is our hope and 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 Immnuel 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, or divisions one may espouse – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God the Creator’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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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 listed in our ‘archives’ that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!  

Kiang P. Lee  (Your Servant in Christ)

Appendix: *Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God in His plurality, as the Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23) God created humanity to reflect Himself in His unified Tri-Personal Being (Trinity).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

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

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

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.

3-PILLAR PURPOSE OF CHRISTMAS

Greetings Friends everywhere! It is that time of year which believers with genuine hearts, apart from all the distractions, celebrate with true rejoicing hearts. It is a story which carries such deep spiritual meaning with equally transcendent impact beyond any story man could have written. Why, because the story of Christmas, or the birth of the Messiah, is God’s own story about mankind. It’s time we read the whole story as God tells us, and celebrate it as a gift from God as we enter this season of rejoicing.

I will share the three reasons and purposes of Christmas, so that by the end of this post, you will be left without any shadow of doubt or misgivings about Christmas and God’s own story about humanity. Let me itemize the three-pillar purpose so we will know the story of Christmas from Scriptures.

  • God gave His only Son Jesus to rescue humans from the sin-condition mankind was consigned and confined to because of our first parent’s (Adam and Eve) disobedience and fall to Satan’s devious and scheming temptation in Eden. (Gen.2:15-17; 3:1-6, 11)
Jesus, The Promised Messiah, “Immanuel” (“God With Us”)
  • God gave His Son so He will restore to humanity the “Love Personality” He had created Adam and mankind to become but failed. Instead, Adam bequeathed fallen humanity with the “sin personality” through rebellion. This is also the ‘rebellious personality’ of the evil one, Satan. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:16; Rom.8:29; Jud.1:6) John tells us this wonderful truth, “There is no fear in Love. But perfect Love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in Love” (1 John 4:18). (You may read more on the topic of “Love Personality” at: http://bulamanriver.net/27435)
Ideogram Designs (23x31) Love is Patient Love is Kind 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. Vinyl Wall Decal Decor Quotes Sayings Inspirational Wall Art
The “Love Personality” Shown With The Spirit’s Love-Fruits (1 Cor.13)
  • God gave His Son so that through Him human immortality through the power of the Holy Spirit is made reality. Immortality is the heritage of humanity as the supreme gift from God our Father. (John 3:36; 6:40; 3:16-17; Rom.8:11)  
Ascension 11, 12 x 15 Fine Art Print by Danny Hahlbohm - FramedArt.com

Jesus’ Own Resurrection and Ascension Brought Immortality for Mankind

The account of Jesus birth was recorded in the Gospel of Luke in this way, “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.  (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.)  And everyone went to his own town to register.  So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.  He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.  While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.  And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 

“An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” 

Nativity Collage - The Macneil Studio Canvas Wall Art Print ( style > decorative > holiday dÉcor > christmas art > religious christmas art > nativity

“Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,  “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”  When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”  So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 

“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.  The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.” (Luke 2:1-20) This is the most beautiful and inspiring part of God’s story about man. For in it we witness the humblest manner God chose for His Son to enter our human world through the virgin Mary, in a manger, in the little town called Bethlehem.

Jesus, The “Immanuel” (“God With Us”)

Following the three steps shown above outlining the reasons for Christmas, let me now expound upon each of them, and see from the Scriptures how God, as our everlasting Father, saved humanity and brought mankind to Himself as His immortal children.

First, How God Save Mankind: Let’s answer how Jesus rescued humanity from the sin-conditioned humans were consigned to live through the fallen Adamic humanity inherited from our first parents? There is only one way, Jesus as the Second Person of the eternal Tri-Personal God (Trinity), came by being born a human, lived a sinless and perfect life, defeating Satan in the temptations to acquit and exonerate humanity from Adam’s sin in Eden. (Matt.4:1-12; Gen.2:16-17; 3:1-6) Then Jesus went on to redeem mankind of all sins through His sacrifice upon His cross, thus freeing humans from the fallen sin-condition inherited from Adam once for all time. (1 John 1:7; 2 Cor.5:21, NLT; Heb.10:10, NLT)

No Greater Love (John 3:16)

Second, How God Restores Humanity Into His “Love Personality” (Gen.1:26-27): Before His death, Jesus promised to send a Friend and Helper in the Person of the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the Tri-Personal God (Trinity), to be with mankind forever. (John 16:7; 14:26; Luk.24:49) Now, Jesus having removed once for all time the sin-condition humanity was held in prison from Adam’s fall through His redemptive sacrifice, God the Father sent the Holy Spirit upon mankind on Pentecost. (Act.2:1-4)

The Holy Spirit is the power and personification of the divine “Love Personality” in humanity, displacing and replacing the “fear personality” of the fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ The devil is the author and power of the “fear personality” emerging from the sin-condition he had imprisoned humanity since Adam’s fall in Eden.

Paul said of the Spirit, “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Cor. 6:19-20).  

The Holy Spirit Is The Power and Personality of God’s Love in Humans

Thirdly, How God Grants the Gift of Immortality to Humans: As “Immanuel” Jesus was human as well as divine, thereby through His resurrection, humanity was raised with Him, and thus mankind became a perfect sinless species forever mirroring and reflecting God’s likeness in “Love Personality” of Christ through the Spirit. (Gen.1:26-27; Eph.2:6; 1 John 4:16; 2 Cor.5:21) This was God’s plan all along when He gave His Son for us, so we can be saved and made immortal children of God. When Jesus took our humanity, He was named and became the Immanuel (“God with us”), or God in human flesh. (Isa.7:14: Matt.1:23) Thus, as God’s Son and the Immanuel, death could not hold Him in the grave, He was resurrected from the death to eternal life and so did humanity, from the sin-condition to the eternal Love-condition. (Act.2:24)

The Resurrection of Jesus Paved The Way For Human Immortality

So there, as briefly and comprehensively as I could, I have shared from Scriptures the 3 pillars of the purpose of Christmas. They tell us why God the Father gave Jesus His Son to be born a human and rescue fallen humanity from sin and perdition, to restore us to His Love, and confer the gift of immortality in order to make humanity His everlasting children. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 Cor.15:42-45; 1 John 4:16; Rom.8:29, CEV)

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.

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, or divisions one may espouse – 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, 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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Zazzle - Merry Christmas & Happy New Year Holiday Greetings Classic Round...

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee (Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26Matt.28:19John 14:101616:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God as a Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-201 Pet.1:22 Thess.2:132 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2Eph.5:23-2732Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His unified and one triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as all humanity is one with and in Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate from, but of one substance from Adam, so was all of mankind. Likewise, through Jesus, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus who took our humanity upon Himself and joined us to the divine triune existence forever.

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. Humans speak of freedom, as if they know whereof they speak. Freedom is something which can never be gained through the self-centered ‘solitary life’ humans promote for themselves under the influence of the devil. True freedom can only be reached through true Love, for Love and freedom are opposite sides of God’s divine nature. You cannot gain freedom without Love, neither can Love be experienced without freedom. Freedom begins with a life of liberation from sin and taking upon ourselves the “Love Personality” of the divine. (Gal.5:1; Rom.3:24; 1 John 4:16)

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

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

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

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

THANKSGIVING 2021

Greetings Friends the world over! This is the time for Thanksgiving in America. Thanksgiving Day is Thursday, November 25, 2021.

Thanksgiving is the essence of goodness, decency, and equity in the human spirit which stands inviolate and knows no borders. It is the epitome for nobility and charity which grounds us to our commonality as people of all language, color, ethnicity, and nationality, making us humans made in the Creator’s likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) Sometimes gratitude does not come easily for some because of our biases and prejudices. Each day we must fight the dark side of our natures to remind us of our humanity with two simple words, “Thank You!”

To say “thank you” is to express the dignity and decency of our humanity replicated in the Creator’s likeness. “Thank you,” (English) “Danke” (German), “Mahalo” (Hawaiian), “Merci” (French), “xiexie” (Chinese), “Terima Kasih” (Malay), “Takk” (Norwegian), “Kamasahamnida” (Korean), “Paldies” (Latvian), “Gracias” (Spanish), “Spasibo” (Russian), “Dhayavad” (Hindi), “Dziekuje,” (Polish), “Obrigado” (Portuguese), “Vinaka” (Fijian), and hundreds and thousands of languages and dialects all speak the language of this larger-than-life divine attribute.

The Scriptures tell us, “Thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live” (1 Thess.5:18). Yes, God want us to live with thankful hearts He has given, so let us not deny our common heritage in this beautiful act of gratitude to each other, especially at this time. There is no place for hatred or malice in the thankful heart for the light of God through His all-embracing Love shines through and breaks through all forms of darkness.

A Happy Thanksgiving All!

Connecticut Stores Opened and Closed on Thanksgiving Day 2021

Personal 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. Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P Lee
Your Servant in Christ

GIFTS ARE MAGNETS FOR THE “LOVE PERSONALITY”

Greeting Friends the world over! What is the “Love Personality?” It is the human personality that has been redeemed from the “fear personality” we inherited from Adam’s fall in Eden. A human being becomes a “Love Personality” just as God is the supreme Love Personality Himself in His Triune Being as Creator. We will delve into the human personality of Love or fear as we see this played out in the parable of the bags of gold in the Book of Matthew, Chapter 25. This is Jesus’ teaching about the “Kingdom of God” as the chapter opens with the words, “The kingdom of heaven will be like…” then He proceeded to give three parables, and one of them is about the ‘bags of gold.’ I will ask you to read the parable in Matthew 25:14-30. (please click on the Bible reference passage to read the text)

The “Love Personality”

Biblical teaching about gold goes much farther than just the idea of gold being a precious metal that can be traded in the stock market or exchange hands for goods and services, for example. Gold is a precious metal that has fascinated people since the beginning of time. In the Bible gold played an important part in the construction of God’s temple. The ark of the covenant which contained the tablets of the commandments, and represented the very mercy seat of God was overlaid with gold. Many of the temple utensils were made of or overlaid with gold, as well as part of the temple structure itself (Exod. 25:11-39; 1 Kings 6:20-35). Looking into the future, Scripture shows a city of pure gold that will come down from God in heaven. (Rev 21:18, 21)

The use of gold as an image of value and permanence in God’s temple and the heavenly city of the future symbolized the value the believer placed on this precious metal and its association with the God we worship. There is nothing evil about gold or the many precious metal and stones. What is evil is the false value we place upon them through idolism and false worship. God alone, the Creator of gold and all precious stones, is worthy of our worship.

The “Fear Personality”

So, we see in Jesus’ parable likens God to “a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey” (Matt.25:14-15). The servants refer to all humanity who can be said to be grouped into three categories commensurate with the varied gifts that God their Creator has placed in them. There are two key takeaways to draw from the parable: the bags of gold, and the servant’s ability.

What is the gold in the parable? What does it represent? The parable states it represents God’s wealth. Then what is God’s wealth? It is God’s Love! Wealth is who God is in Himself, so God’s Love is His wealth and riches, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). God is wealth and riches who is Love in Himself. Of course, for He is Creator of all wealth and riches, both material and spiritual, seen and unseen. The true riches will always be defined through the Creator, not the created. (2 Cor.4:18) God is not made of Love, He is Love. God is Love and Love is God, there is no distinction, they are one and the same. In the Father’s great Love for humanity, He spared not His Son but gave Him for our redemption to secure our future in His eternal Kingdom.

FreeBibleimages :: The parable of the talents of gold :: A parable about  three servants left to invest their master's money (Matthew 25:14-30)
Jesus’ Parable of The talents of Gold

God has promised His human children to inherit all things and share in His glory. And Paul tells us this, “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ.” (Rom.8:17). To become heirs of God is to become heirs of who He is, for God is Love. That is to say we become “Love Personality” as God is the supreme Love Personality in His Triune Being as Creator. To “share in His glory” means to share in His Love Being by becoming “Love Personality” in our own right as the Bible affirms humanity was created in God’s Love image, which is the likeness of spiritual gold – His Love! (Gen.1:26-27) Paul said this about Jesus, “Who (Jesus), being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God” (Phil.2:6, NKJV) To be “equal with God” is identify with Him in His “Love Personality.” The Book of Revelation tells us, “The one who overcomes will inherit all things, and I will be his God and he will be My son” (Rev.21:7). To inherit ‘all things’ is to inherit who God is as Creator of “all things.” That is, to become “Love Personalities” as God is Love in Himself.

Gold – Metaphor for God’s Love

The second key to the parable is the servant’s ability, each servant was given different amounts of gold, commensurate with, or “according to his ability.” ‘Ability’ represents the person’s gift and talent conferred by the Creator at birth. Gifts spring from the depth of God’s Love for humanity. So, each of our gifts and talents reflect and represent His infinite Love. Our innumerable and varied talents express the depth and immensity of God’s Love. Paul said this about the magnificence of God’s Love, “That you understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His Love is” (Eph.3:18). So, the parable speaks of the servants utilizing their ability (gifts) to grow and multiply God’s Love (spiritual gold) in their lives and become wealthy by growing the master’s wealth. Ultimately humans become “Love Personalities” themselves. So, humanity gave birth out of God’s Love and is given His wealth (gold/Love) with which to utilize and trade.

That is the vital point to keep in mind from this story. The gift is constant, and the Master’s wealth is subject to change through ascending and descending fluctuations. According to the parable, human gifts are constant and unchanging, for one’s responsibility is measured by one’s “ability.” Human gifts and talents are conferred upon conception in the womb, as the Bible asserts, “For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (Psa.139:13-14) Job said this about humans, “Didn’t He (God) who made me in the womb make him? Didn’t One (God) fashion us in the womb?” (Job 31:15; also Psa.119:73; Job 10:8; Jer.1:5).

Human Gifts and Talents Divinely Conferred By God the Creator

With God having fashioned all mankind with gifts from the womb, our talents becomes a magnet in human life. So, the gift is constant and reflects God’s Love and wealth in each person. Peter said, “God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another” (1 Pet.4:10). Whatever that gift, the Creator wants each person to use it for His divine purpose, and that purpose is none other than in service of His Love. (1 John 4:16) So, we can become successful at what we do in life through our individual talent, but if we fail at Love, then the Bible says “we are nothing” (1 Cor.13:2).

The responsibility for each person was commensurate with his/her ability, nothing more, nothing less. The Bible states, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven” (John 3:27). This is true with human gifts and talents as with everything in life. Paul said, “It is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Phil.2:13). The Bible warns us about not being presumptuous and conceited about ourselves and our capabilities. Paul points out, “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you” (Rom.12:3). By saying, “In accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you,” this speaks of human gifts and talents. We must guard against being presumptuous but be realistic with ourselves and humble in disposition.

A Person Can Be Gifted at Pottery, a Builder, a Scientist, a Dentist, a Teacher, a Parent, Plumber, Architect, etc.

Nobody was given more than he or she can handle according to the inborn and natural ability conferred by the Creator God in every human being. Neither was a person given less than the person can handle. God is just and fair in all He does especially in His relationship with His human children. Paul said this, “We have different gifts according to the grace given us. If one’s gift is prophecy (teaching), let him use it in proportion to his faith” (Rom.12:6). God promises, “No test that comes your way is beyond the course of what others have had to face. All you need to remember is that God will never let you down; He’ll never let you be pushed past your limit; He’ll always be there to help you come through it” (1 Cor.10:13, MSG). Yes, our hope and future rests upon His unfathomable and incomprehensible Love. (John 3:16)

However, what is subject to change and fluctuation is the wealth, the Master’s wealth, gold, depending upon the application of the gift itself upon the situation and circumstance by which Love is made to grow and mature or retrogress and decline. And the person’s ‘Love bank’ (Love Personality) is ever growing to a whole person fashioned in Christ’s image. (Rom.8:29) The application of the gift is the servant’s responsibility with the help of the Holy Spirit. (John 14:26; 16:12-14) Here is the crux of the parable, change and fluctuation can be subject to increase or decrease in the ‘Love bank’ equilibrium as determined by how the gift is utilized and what it is used for. The gift is the trading platform in the ‘spiritual marketplace’ where the currency of Love is traded for spiritual goods and services.

According to the parable, there are three categories of people. The first servant represent people God has conferred the greater ability and talent than the second category. And the second group was more talented than the third category. The gifts are allotted and dispersed by determination of the Creator. In fact, the Bible says that we “may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col.2:2-3). So, the Father has determined that all human gifts and talents are reposed in and spawned from His Son, the second Person in the triune Godhead, for all our gifting spring from the divine “mystery hidden in Him carrying all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” The “treasures of wisdom and knowledge” speaks of human gifts and talents.

Whatever the gift or talent does not make a person inferior or superior in God’s sight. What matters is we are using it as a platform for God’s Love and promoting good deeds and works. (Eph.2:10) We read Jesus said, “A person can receive only what is given them from heaven” (John 3:27). No one can produce more than his/her gift would allow, whatever “is given them from above.”

Hopefully, we’ll not use that as an excuse for not doing our utmost best with our gift, both quantitatively and qualitatively. On the other hand, we can fizzle and fail by not utilizing our gifts to its uttermost, or doing nothing at all for Love’s sake, as the servant who was given one bag of gold. (Matt.25:24-25)

That is the message of the parable. It is not identifying a person’s gift exactly, but how God confer gifts in human beings into three categories. A person can be a plumber, an engineer, a doctor a gardener, an architect, a builder, a marine biologist or fisherman, a basketball player or botanist, a soccer player, or whatever the gift. One may be able to do the same work at a higher quality and quantity than the next person, depending on their mindset, conviction, and industry. They are all important to, and Loved by God who conferred the gifts. But the cardinal sin of the parable is to turn the platform of your gift utilizing the currency of fear (fool’s gold), and instead burying the bag of gold (God’s Love).

The first servant was given five bags of gold. What would be the benefit of giving a person fifty bags of gold if he/she possesses no corresponding ability to properly handle it? The first servant with five bags of gold had multiplied the Master’s wealth by 100%, and brought back ten bags of gold. His “Love Personality” (Love bank) has increased to the maximum degree his/her gift would tolerate in relation to the application of the gift. So did the next person with different but equally appropriate ability than the first servant was given two bags of gold and also multiplied the Master’s gold by 100% and returned four bags of gold (Love).

Both servants had utilized the platform of their gift to multiply God’s Love (gold) to the fullest possible extent. Take a moment to think about God’s command for humanity to, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’” (Mar.12:30). We wonder sometimes if God is preoccupied in self-glory to give such a command? But not so, for this is the purpose of human life – to become “Love Personalities” as He is the the supreme “Love Personality” Himself. (1 John 4:8; 1 Cor.8:3) The command was a revelation about human destiny. Thereby, by commanding humans to Love Him absolutely without reservation, God had us in mind, not Him. God is Love and selfless in His Tri-Personal Being. The deeper we Love Him the greater His Love for us, and in the process we reflect and become like Him…we become “Love Personalities” being disrobed from the fallen “fear personality” inherited from Adam. (Rom.8:29)

However, the third servant who was given one bag of gold did differently from the previous two and instead of trading with his Master’s gold for gain, he did nothing but buried his one bag of gold in the ground somewhere. He gained nothing for he never did make a trade in order to multiply the Master’s wealth. Instead, he/she used the gift as their platform to promote fear (fool’s gold) and ignored God’s Love (true gold) entirely.

What Will You Do With The Master’s Wealth?

Upon his return, the Master enquired of the servants as to His investment He had entrusted with them. The first two of the servants who had made a hundred percent increase with the Master’s wealth were apprised and the Master was happy with their performance, “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!” (Matt.25:21, 23). However, the third servant category returned his one bag of gold and said, “Here is what belongs to you” (Matt.25:25). The Master was not happy, and said, “‘You wicked, lazy servant! Take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags” (Matt.25:26, 28).

Your Talent Is God’s Love-Gift to You and Your Gift Is Your Act of Love to God and Your Fellow Humans

A person may be a gifted wood carver, or architect who designs award-winning structures. These are physical manifestations of the person’s gift, however, there is the spiritual aspect of each and every gift and talent. It is this spiritual manifestation is where the wealth of God’s kingdom is to be found and made to multiply and increase. This is what the Master is looking out to see in His relationship with humans, and how each of us have performed. The Bible says it this way, “The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart” (1 Sam.16:7). Paul said, “For God does not show favoritism” (Rom.2:11). In the final analysis we are told to “remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms His covenant” (Deut.8:18; Prov.10:22). Yes, life is about trading with our gifts and talents to enrich and increase spiritual wealth in the human life and that of the Master and by extension humanity as a whole will become enriched and refined in character and being, in the process.

The material manifestation of your gift is a given, however, not so the spiritual manifestation. This is where the rubber meets the road…the heart, the motive which triggers human activity for the true wealth (Love/gold) which counts. This is why humans are blessed with gifts and talents in the first place, it’s always asking why am I doing this, what am I doing it for? This is the main point of the parable. You may be very good with your gift physically and materially, but that is not the meaning of the parable. It was about what your gift produced spiritually. The Bible states that without Love, “I am nothing” (1 Cor.13:2). So, for every activity we do with our gifts, there is a material manifestation and there is a spiritual manifestation. If we place the spiritual deeds first, then the material will fall into its proper place. (Matt.6:33)

Can we see that gifts are conferred foremost for the purpose of building spiritual wealth? Apparently, the third servant who was given one bag of gold did not appreciate this all-important aspect of his/her life. The first and second servant did. Recall, they were all given the same quality of gold, not necessarily quantity. We have seen that gold is the metaphor for divine Love, His wealth. God’s Love is one, same, and whole, thereby, it is never measured by degree. (Heb.13:8; Mal.3:6; Jam.1:17) God’s Love is not measured by carats, as in 10 carats, 24 carats, 40 carats, or whatever measurement humans have assigned to this precious metal. God’s Love is immeasurable and there is no way of determining the quality of His Love for its sublimity and richness.

The only difference is the quantity which is given to humans is “in accordance with the gift (faith) God has distributed to each of you.” Our perspective of God’s Love is that it is given by measure though its quality is unquestionable. The role of humans is to multiply what they are given commensurate with human gifts. Only Jesus possessed Love “without measure” for He was God in human flesh. (John 3:34; Isa.7:14)

Whatever measure of spiritual gold we are given from the Master’s storehouse, God’s Love is infinite, unfathomable, and beyond comprehension. There is no height by which it can be measured. There is no depth that can fathom it. There is no width, length, or breath by which it can be quantified nor qualified. It is indeterminable and limitless. However, the gold’s increase or decrease is determined by the application of human gifts. The Bible tells us this about human gifts and talents, “There are different kinds of spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit is the source of them all” (1 Cor.12:4, NLT). We are reminded to, “Remember the LORD your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful, in order to fulfill His covenant” (Deut.8:18, NLT).

So, the parable speaks of going out and utilizing your gift as the platform upon which to trade with the spiritual currency of Love in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’ And at the end of trading, we ought to show a balance sheet where you have increased the Master’s wealth (Love). This means the steady growth of God’s divine ‘Love bank balance’ (Love Personality) in the heart and mind of the servants (believers). But what exactly is this ‘Love currency’ or spiritual monetary value and system we utilize upon the platform of our talents and gifts?

How exactly do we use our gifts and talents with God’s ‘Love currency’ to trade within the ‘spiritual marketplace?’ Without knowledge and recognition of what the ‘Love currency’ is, how would we trade in the ‘spiritual marketplace?’ Let’s begin by asking what exactly is God’s ‘Love currency?’ Paul told 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). So, the Holy Spirit is the personification of God’s Love and ‘Love currency’ in humans. Paul said further, “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Cor.3:16). So, humans were created to be the temple of God, the temple of His Love through the Holy Spirit. With that, each and every believer is given money (Love currency/Spirit), five, two, one, bags as the case may be, to trade in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’

What Are Spiritual Gifts? Understanding the Types and Discovering Yours
God’s Love Is His Gift to You to Trade Upon the Platform of Your Talent and Gift

Jesus revealed the work of the Spirit when He said, “When the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come. He 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 16:13-15). What this says is the Spirit is the face of the Son, just as Jesus is the face of the Father to humanity. (John 14:9; Matt.28:19)

God’s ‘Love currency’ are the fruits of the Spirit’s Love which Paul communicated to the Corinthian Christians. (1 Cor.13:1-13). Paul stated the ‘Love currency’ are actually the Love-fruits of the Holy Spirit, and Paul tell us what they are: *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness,  *the fruit of modesty (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; also Gal. 5:22-23; Rom. 12:9-21). What we see above in the Love-fruits represent the currency of Love through the Spirit’s presence in human life. Both Jesus and the Spirit co-exist in the heart of God’s children, for Paul said, “Christ lives in me;” and “You are God’s temple that God’s Spirit dwells in” (Gal.2:20; 1 Cor.3:16; Act.17:28). What we see above are the fruits of the Tree of Life (Holy Spirit) which we feed upon every day in life’s human journey upon earth.

Fruit of the Spirit Poster
The Currency of The Spirit’s Love-Fruits 1 Corinthians 13

Just as these are the Love-fruits of God’s Spirit, there are fruits of fear. The fear-fruits are the exact opposite to the Love-fruits shown above. Here are some examples of the fruits of fear shown bracketed in italic with the Love-fruits: Joy (depression/regret/sadness); Peace (hostility/tension/disorder); Patience (intolerance/irritability/impatience); Kindness (malice/violence/inhumanity); Goodness (evilness/immorality/selfishness); Gentleness (cruelty/harshness/ruthlessness); Self-Control (instability/rashness/self-indulgence); etc. Both Love and fear represent the spiritual currencies that are traded in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’

From the above, we see the currency of Love clearly stipulated. These Love-fruits spells out the ‘Love currency’ we utilize upon the platform of our gifts and talents whereby we trade and earn even more Love and ‘Love-fruits’ in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’ The end result is become the Love Personality in the true sense of the word as the Spirit remake us into Christ’s image, for He is the ultimate Love Personality in human form which God destined we are to emulate, and become ‘Love Personalities’ ourselves in Christ’s image. (Rom.8:28; 5:5; 1 John 4:16) Essentially, in the essence of playing and living the role of servants in the parable, Paul speaks of what we encounter with its end-result in this way, “As all of us reflect the Lord’s glory (Love Personality)… we are being changed into His image with ever-increasing glory (Love Personality). This comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit” (2 Cor.3:18).

In other words, we are in a ‘spiritual marketplace’ where we’re trading with God’s Love as currency or spiritual money, utilizing our talents to increase the divine Love currency who were entrusted with the Master’s gold (Love) treasures. And as we do, the end-result is the Master’s gold gradually become brighter and more beautiful spiritually as God enters our lives and we take on and become more and more like His Son – for Jesus Christ is the embodiment of God’s Love Personality to humanity unveiling the Father’s glory. (John 3:16; Rom.8:9)

What is this marketplace where we use God’s Love currency to trade upon the platform of each of our gifts and talents? The marketplace is where we live and encounter relationships first with God and through Jesus we relate with our fellow humans. Jesus gave us the most important roles we must play in life, with these words, “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matt.22:37-40). This is the ‘spiritual marketplace’ where we are cultivating a Love relationship first with God, and with our fellow humans in whatever life situation we encounter.

How do we use our gifts with the currency of God’s Love to trade in this ‘spiritual marketplace?’ Jesus utilized His exceptional miraculous gift as the platform which attracted people to come and hear the Gospel which God the Father gave His Son to announce to humanity. (John 3:16; Matt.4:17) The Bible tell us this about Jesus, how “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how He went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with Him” (Act.10:38). What is that Gospel? It is the ‘good news’ about God’s Love, that’s it! And each of our gifts does the same thing, for we are now Christ’s ambassadors continuing His mission of spreading the Love of God. (Matt.28:20)

Many don’t realize this basic truth of the Bible that there are only two forms of humans that has ever existed and walked upon this earth. Both originate from the Creator God. All of humanity is essentially part of the entire human species of God’s children, and further defined by two ‘humanities’ (two humans), if you like. (Act.17:28)

A variety of fruit for delivery in a basket
Fruit Basket-Metaphor for God’s Love-Fruits, The Spiritual Love Currency We Read in 1 Corinthians 13.

At the beginning, the first human, Adam, was created from the dust of the earth, perfect and sinless until his fall at the hands of the devil in the Garden of Eden. (Gen.3:1-24) Thus, mankind was consigned to a life of spiritual imprisonment under the rebellious spirit in the sin-condition of the evil one. Humanity was cut-off from access to God through the Holy Spirit, as symbolized by the Tree of Life, because of sin. (Gen.3:24) Consequently, it is from fallen Adam that the spiritually imprisoned humanity descended through Mother Eve. This is our old fallen and corrupt humanity – from the fallen ‘Adamic humanity,’ mankind inherited the sin-condition with the ‘fear personality’ as opposed to the divine ‘Love Personality’ of God in Christ.

Then, there is the second new humanity resulting from the incarnation of Jesus, God’s only Son descending from God the Father. Jesus is also identified as the second Adam. (1 Cor.15:45-49) Through the prophet Isaiah God announced this wonderful message to mankind, “Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:22-23, KJV). This is the new humanity of Jesus, or His ‘Immanuel humanity,’ following His prophetic name announced by the prophet Isaiah. The prophetic name, Immanuel, means “God is with us,” and means Jesus is fully God and fully human. (Matt.1:23). God gave up His Son for us, and He has accepted Christ’s sacrifice for the human sin-condition as the absolute and final atonement for human corruption and evil for all times, thus making redemption for Adam’s sin. (John 3:16; Matt.20:19)

“For God So Loved The World That He Gave His Only Son”

Therefore, from the new ‘Immanuel (‘God is with us’) humanity’ of Jesus, humans can choose to adopt from God through Jesus Christ in the Spirit’s (Love) power. This change is a rebirth (born anew) into the ‘Love Personality’ of Jesus. Paul, while speaking about this new humanity, said, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves (to sin), so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit (Love) you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by Him (God) we cry, “Abba, Father” (Rom.8:15). The purpose of the second redeemed ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus is to substitute for the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ of Adam, the father of the ‘fear personality.’ (You can read about this rebirth in my post titled, “The New Humanity of Jesus” at: http://bulamanriver.net/9718)

Jesus’ Immanuel (“God With Us”) Humanity

What is the fundamental difference between the two? There is the primary difference of origin. Though Adam came from God perfect and sinless by creation, the human sin-condition came about as a result of Adam and Eve falling at the hands of Satan’s temptation and sin. (Gen.2:15-17; 3:1-6) Thus, the ‘fallen Adamic humanity’ with the ‘fear personality’ resulted from their rebellion. Through God’s promise, Jesus, the second Adam, by incarnation gave birth to the ‘Immanuel humanity’ and thereby imparted the ‘Love personality’ of God to humanity. Jesus’ messianic title, Immanuel (“God with us”), conveys the origin of the Son of God, fully God and fully human, originating from the one Triune Godhead of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (John 1:1; 14:16-17; Eph.4:4-6; 1 Pet.1:2; Matt.28:19; 1 Cor.15:45-49)

The two human forms devolve into two broad philosophies of life. One is self-centered, driven by the ‘fear personality’ inherited from our fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ and end with the sin-condition and death. (Rom.6:23) While the ‘Immanuel humanity’ is other-centered, driven by God’s ‘Love Personality’ through His Spirit we adopt through a spiritual rebirth, and ultimately, human immortality in Christ’s likeness. (John 3:16; Rom.8:11; 5:5; 1 Cor.15:45, 47-49; John 3:3-7) John said, “There is no fear in Love. But perfect Love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in Love” (1 John 4:18).

The two broad philosophies of life reveal the undercurrent that governs the atmosphere and attitude of the ‘spiritual marketplace.’ There are only two spiritual currencies that are recognized and traded within it: Love and fear! They are the medium by which spiritual transactions are conducted and concluded. And every trade is carried out through the platform of the human gifts God has conferred upon humanity, utilizing either of the two currencies to exchange spiritual goods and services (works).

By extension, we must be cognizant of the fact that there are only two realities, just as in Jesus’ temptation there was physical/material bread, there is its counterpart of spiritual bread. (Matt.4:3-4) The spiritual currency of fear and Love, combined with the human talents God has conferred upon each of us, forms the basic ingredients which keep the ‘spiritual marketplace’ busy with spiritual transactions. Paul said, “You have taken off your old self (‘fallen Adamic humanity’) with its practices and have put on the new self, (‘Immanuel humanity’) which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator” (Col.3:9-10, italics and bracket my emphasis)

Let us see an example of how the spiritual currency of Love and fear is used in the ‘spiritual marketplace.’ The gifts conferred upon humans enable us to live a life with purpose. The gift gives the person passion, meaning, and joy in life. The gift is divinely deposited in the person’s heart and mind. With that in mind, a person crafts a plan or design corresponding to the person’s talent. Let’s assume the gift of wood carving. There are two realities, the first is the word carver can carve an exquisite work of art using wood. First there is the physical/material manifestation of the gift. Then, second there is the spiritual manifestation, the spiritual reality. Recall, the spiritual manifestation consists of two realities and directions which drives a person’s gift – Love or fear.

We saw that the path of Love is further dissected into two routes: Love for God first, and then our Love for our fellow humans. (Matt.22:37-40). So firstly, there must be an underlying commitment to use our gifts for spiritual reasons, for God’s purpose as we have seen analogized in the parable of the bags of gold. Peter said, “God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another”
(1 Pet.4:10). And we ought to always display the enduring spirit of acknowledgement that our accomplishments, consistent with our gifts, are made possible only because the gifts conferred upon us by our Maker. This spontaneous and thankful attitude of mind ought to be instinctive and organic, as Paul said, “Be persistent in prayer; in every situation, be thankful to God” (1 Thess.5:17-18, AMP). The act of gratitude and acknowledging God’s provision is an expression of our Love for Him.

Why living in a poor country means you have bad food choices
The Spiritual Marketplace Where Love-Fruits Are Exchanged with People with Spiritual Goods and Services – Good Works!

When it comes to our relationship with fellow humans, we ask how does our gift interact with other people? Does Love inspire our actions or does fear lead the way? In the ‘spiritual marketplace’ what is the spiritual goods and services the spiritual currency of Love is being exchanged for? Paul answers this way, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Eph.2:10). Yes, we sow the seeds of Love, by using the currency of Love, with which to reap the harvest of “good works.” Recall, one of the many fruits of the Spirit is “goodness.”

All the fruits of Love shown in the Spirit’s Love-fruits produce one goal: “good works.” On the opposite pendulum, a person can use the currency of fear we saw above and produce “evil works.” This was no different from Jesus’ life which the Bible records as saying, “With the Holy Spirit and with power, Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him” (Act.10:38; Matt.4:23). I emphasize the words, “doing good,” or “good works.” Peter said, “God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another” (through “good works”) (1 Pet.4:10).

People have been known to “cash-in” on their talents. Is our relationship with people to get something out of them? Is that the motivation for our relationship with others as it intersects with our gifts? Does the wood carver create his/her piece of artwork purely for the sake of money, or other non-monetary rewards, for instance? People have charged exorbitant prices for their work (gift) than is justified. Our actions through our gifts must be filtered through God’s Love. (1 John 4:16)

People are known to be meanly transactional in their relationships with others, where in extending a helping hand they expect a premium in return, a ‘I scratch your back and you scratch mine’ mindset. However, Love is sacrificial in its outlook where our perspective is for the wellbeing of others. Love expects nothing in return, for Love is its own reward, for the Scripture tell us, “God is Love. Whoever lives in Love lives in God, and God in them.” (1 John 4:168). To exist in the divine “Love Personality” of Christ is to be complete, lacking nothing.

money-changing-hands-e1477625146532 | James L'Etoile
Gifts can be Turned into a Platform of Fear for Self-centered Gains (Tit.1:11)

People can turn their talent into a self-centered ‘ATM money machine.’ I believe the servant who buried his/her Master’s one bag of gold (Love) was such a person who acted and utilized his/her gift purely for selfish reasons (fear) and using the platform of his/her gift to trade in the currency of fear for the self. People have used fear to get things done. Jesus told the unprofitable servant who buried his one bag of gold, “You should have put My money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest” (Matt.25:27).

In other words, the servant could have done the bare minimum and placed the bag of gold (Love) in a fixed term investment at a local bank. But instead he/she made a complete about turn and went to the the extent of exchanging the Master’s gold for ‘fool’s gold’ or fear, self-centeredness, and sin and acted foolishly. The Scripture says this about Lucifer’s original sin, “You defiled your sanctuaries (heart) with your many sins and your dishonest trade” (Ezek28:11-19, esp. V.18).

Am I saying it is wrong to charge for a service a person renders? No, the Bible says clearly, “The worker deserves his wages” (Luk.10:7). Again, “The laborer is worthy of his wages” (1 Tim.5:18). So, a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay is a biblically sound fiscal principle. And when done out of Love, we are shining the light of His glory.

So, it is the underlying motivation…that is the question. Is it done out of fear or Love? Our foundation must always be Love. As Paul told the Romans, “Do not owe anyone anything, except to Love one another, for the one who Loves another has fulfilled the law” (Rom.13:8). What “law”? The law of Love. We are to be under obligation to no one–the only obligation is to Love one another. Our goal is not to earn more physical wealth, but to multiply the spiritual wealth of the Master who has invested in us. Jesus said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matt.6:19-2133).

As far as material wealth, God has promised to supply our needs and even desires with the understanding that we “seek His kingdom first” (Matt.6:33, 25-32; Psa.37:4). And God’s kingdom is about Love, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8). The platform of your gift must be motivated by Love. We can work for an employer for a price (wage), but the underlying motive must be Love. What drives us is God’s Love, not fear. What is the content of the product we’re helping to produce? Does it promote Love or fear? Does it promote ‘good works’ or ‘evil deeds?’ That question ought to guide us philosophically.

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God’s Gift Inspired by His Love Produces “Good Works”

I have used the case of the wood carver above as an example from which you can extrapolate the principle onto your case individually as it relates to your gift and situation in life. When we use our gifts to dispense fear, negative fruits grows and proliferates and become stronger. The same works for Love. The dispenser of fear has magnified and intensified the currency (spirit) of fear in his/her life and in the lives of others. God wants His children to dispense Love and grow His Love everywhere. This is how we live in freedom day by day as God’s people and children.

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.

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, or divisions one may espouse – 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, 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.”

Prayer: A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Dialogue Between A Person and God (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.

Personal 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”* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang P. Lee (Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life”: Relationship with God has no meaning without Love. By its very nature, Love cannot endure in solitary existence. So, when God said “Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness…” He was revealing Himself as existing in His trinitarian existence. That is, His Tri-Personal Being as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:26; Matt.28:19; John 14:10, 16; 16:7) The Hebrew word for ‘God’ in the creation account is “Elohim.” It describes God as a Trinity – the Tri-Personal Godhead, which other scriptures attests. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14) So, God is Trinitarian in His Love nature. Love by its nature is relational as God is in His Tri-Personal Being. Hence, a human being was created a relational being.

Adam was solitary and incomplete until God made Eve. He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone (solitary). I will make a helper suitable for him” (Gen.2:18, italics mine). So, God gave Adam a family to raise composed of a father, mother, and offspring, to reflect Himself in His plural Being. The Bible states that the Church’s or humanity’s destiny is to marry Christ, the second Person of the Triune Godhead, in the new age to come which will be an everlasting relationship. (2 Cor.11:2; Eph.5:23-27, 32; Rev.19:7) The Bible is abundantly clear about God’s nature and declaration of Himself in His relational Triune Being from the past, the present, and the future. God has never lived as a solitary Being, but a Tri-Personal Being.

It’s noteworthy to understand that Eve was not created an individual creation from the dust of the earth as was Adam. She was not created apart from Adam as an individualized separate human being, instead, she was taken out from Adam’s side to show she was biologically one and indivisibly part of Adam. Eve was not detached (solitary) from Adam, but intrinsically inseparable from Adam’s innermost humanity. When Adam saw Eve, he said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man” (Gen.2:21-23).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

Each one of us was created as an indivisible relational human being incubated and given birth from Adam’s mold as one species, for God created humanity to reflect the eternal likeness in His triunity. We are born for relationships with the divine triune Love as our guiding principle. All this show that humans were created to be indivisibly one to reflect God’s Tri-Personal image of Oneness, not solitary separateness. When God sent Jesus His eternal Son, He became human in order to unify humanity spiritually to the Triune Being of God once for all time. Hence, when the prophet Isaiah proclaimed Jesus’ coming, He was given the prophetic name, Immanuel. (Isa.7:14) The name means “God with us” (Matt.1:23). Humanity is ‘organically’ one with the Triune God, just as humanity is one with Adam.

Most religions believe God as some solitary being. The true God is not solitary by any means, He is the Trinity in His Tri-Personal Being. God consist of three Persons in One divine triune Godhead. They exist in One “homoousion” meaning consisting in one substance, or “consubstantiality.” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in One hypostatic union, One substance, like Eve was biologically part of and never physically separate, but of one substance from Adam. Likewise, humanity is made of one spiritual substance with the triune God through Jesus Christ who took our humanity upon Himself and joined it to the divine triune existence forever.

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

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

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

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