What the Bible says about light and seed

The True Light "In him, (the Lord Jesus) was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world,…the world didn’t recognize him." John 1:4,9.

The Good Seed and the Weeds “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seeds in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. Matthew 13:24,25.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Glad Christmas Medley - O Come, O Come Emmanuel

Posted from Youtube video.
If you set it on automatic reproduction, you can listen to the whole medley.
Wonderful memories from their concert in Asheville, NC 
Merry Christmas and Christ´s blessings to all my friends around the world.

Europe: Closer to the Antichrist

Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Eternal Spring of Joy, Peace and Hope from the Heart of God

Note from the author: This is a Christmas message that I repost every year since 2009 because of its timelessness. I hope that it will bless you and that the seeds of love, truth, hope and joy planted in your heart by the Lord will flourish as Aaron´s almond rod of authority and service and nurture the spiritually hungry and thirsty around us.

A Light and Seed Christmas message
Written by Jean-Louis
Reposted and revised from the original post written in 2009. 

As people celebrate Christmas with all its symbols, regardless of what they think the exact time and year of God's divine condescension among us  are, this is what this season represents to me as a spiritual reality.

As I was reflecting upon the incarnation of our Savior Christ Jesus as the supreme gift of our Heavenly Father to mankind, I could not help but think of the limited perspective that we sometimes have of the infinite measure of all of God’s attributes and works in the vast universe He created but also in each of our lives.

The first thing I consider when I ponder the miracle of the supernatural birth of Jesus-Christ is that God chose to manifest His presence in the flesh as a seed of the Holy Spirit in the chosen womb of Mary.

Imagine a little! The creator and sustainer of the endless universe becoming a frail human being Himself subject to the natural law of human birth and physical existence.

What is amazing is that as we follow the course of His birth, life, death, resurrection, ascension and His coming back to take His own faithful ones to reign with Him, the same characteristic stages apply to us who have experienced the second spiritual birth and have passed from death to life, from the kingdom of darkness into His marvelous light.

 As the mature tree is essentially contained in the seed just waiting to develop through the different stages of growth, so was the life of the Lord Jesus and so is every one of our lives.
An illustration from the sharing of presents on Christmas day comes to mind. Imagine one of the present being a huge box with someone’s name on it. The person feverishly tears off the paper hoping to discover a big present that will provide a level of satisfaction commensurate to his perceived size. But as the box reveals another smaller box hidden under the packing peanuts, he suspects someone is playing a joke on him as he realizes from the sheer weight of the box.

As he keeps on opening another box, then another one, he finally opens the last tiny box and no matter what the value of the present, it leaves him or her with a sense of unfulfilled expectation and diminished satisfaction. Here in brief is how the acquiring and enjoying of material things which are supposed to fulfill our lives from the cradle to the grave end up being a great disappointment and a snare in the end. Not so with the present from our God, the free gift of salvation available to anyone willing to accept and receive it. 

Conversely, imagine that you received the gift of God, salvation by grace in a small box. After receiving and opening the gift, once your life is changed by that spiritual tiny seed, you realize that as you grow, the gift keeps on growing as you learn and mature into eternal everlasting life, the box of our life, so to speak, getting bigger and bigger.

Now considering another angle to giving and sharing presents.

Jesus talking about greed said that life doesn’t consist in the abundance of things. Luke 12:15.And He told the people to not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:19-21.

Jesus is not only talking about treasures, but incorruptible treasures! What is He talking about? He is talking about treasures that have their beginning as an intangible seed beginning here on the earth and continuing in Heaven and/or enjoying all the stages of the growth of the seed in two dimensions simultaneously, in the physical body while at the same time in the invisible realm of the spirit.

He means treasures like the Christian virtues, generosity of spirit, goodness, mercy, humility, faith, wisdom, spiritual knowledge, love, patience, fruits of the Spirit, all intangible, but whose effects are felt when translated into good works and service to our brothers, sisters and fellow man. And of course, included are all the material gifts that he has blessed us with in superabundance to share with those less fortunate than us and to provide the means to advance the Kingdom of God, through preaching of the Gospel through gifts to missions throughout the world. Everything that will become the stones building the foundation of our sphere of influence in the coming Kingdom.

In I Timothy 6: 18, Paul tells Timothy to "Command those who are rich in this present world... to put their hope in God who richly provide us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way, they will lay up for themselves a firm foundation for the coming age so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life". It is obvious that one can build a house or a building only as tall and as large as the dimensions of the foundation supporting it, otherwise the building collapses.

In the Bible we can find several mentions of this manifestation of life as encapsulated in the title of Our Lord who is the Alpha, the beginning and Omega, the end and of course everything in between.

We can find the image of the seed in I Peter 1:23. “For you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is through the living and abiding Word of God.” Isaiah 9:6-7 promise of the coming Messiah follows this development: "for a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us, and the government will rest upon His shoulders … there will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace."

To give another perspective to our modern misguided interpretation of authority, let’s look at the test of authority as it applies to governing a people. To resolve the problem of questioning of Aaron the high priest's leadership by the other leaders of Israel, God caused Aaron’s rod, sign of his delegated authority to instantly sprout, put forth buds and bear ripe almonds, Numbers 17:8. And the best of it is that it started from a piece of dead wood, the wood of an almond tree.  Here in a nut shell, we have a transformation (resurrection), new birth and growth, a flowering branch and a mature nut ready for nourishment. Now real and good delegated authority consists in extracting the nut out the shell without crushing the nut. Why would God choose an almond branch out of all the possibilities? 

 To have a more thorough understanding of the use of the Almond Tree in the Bible, click Here, and the following links: Daily Bible Study: Almonds  and The Lesson of the Almond Tree

As an aside, it is a good lesson in the discipline of children. If we want almond paste mixed with hard bits and pieces of shell mixed together, then we can crush the entire almond with brute force. If we want to raise emotionally and spiritually healthy children we need to apply discipline with the wise and loving, but firm instruction provided by God, breaking the strong will, but not crushing the spirit. Thus the seed will grow into maturity and produce a good fruit or a good nut in this case!
Salvation, knowledge and wisdom are part of the incorruptible treasures that Christ talks about in Matthew. Talking about Christ, Isaiah 33:6 declares:He will be a sure foundation for our times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge: The fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.”
This salvation which starts as a spiritual seed planted by the Holy Spirit Himself in the hearts of men who have received Him on His terms is ever expanding and revealing the loving heart of our Heavenly Father at this time of the year and all year long. "And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us". Romans 5:5

Paul prays for the Ephesians in Ephesians 3:14-17 that: "He would grant you according to the riches of His glory to be strengthened with power through His spirit in the inner man so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith and that you being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God." This is also my prayer for all of us today and for the coming year.

Contrary to the philosophy of this passing and dying world, the present of eternal life in Christ Jesus started as a tiny seed, first the human seed inherited from our natural father and then the Holy Spirit seed  that contained all that is necessary to fulfill the purpose for which our Father and Creator put us on this earth. See I Corinthians 15.  45 So it is written: “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. 46 The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. (NIV)

So this Christmas season until the beginning of 2018 and beyond, I invite you to remember with grateful and humble hearts, that the tiniest and most humble manifestation of life, a human seed, a tiny baby in his or her mother's womb is infinitely precious and worthy of protection and nurturing because it was made in God’s image. Psalm 139.

I invite you also to let your hearts and minds expand onto other amazing dimensions of life and consider all the stages of the life of the Savior in His birth, His death, His resurrection, His going back into the glory of Heaven and His coming back to give us glorified bodies, for we have already been resurrected (spiritually)  if we have been born again, starting as a tiny seed wrapped up in a small and fragile package that we all are, as pilgrims on this earth. 

This season Jesus offers us hope, joy and peace in a world sadly lacking theses blessings.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13.

Lord God, our loving Heavenly Father, we thank you and praise you for the gift of life present and eternal in Our Lord Jesus-Christ.

Everafter - Pete Garcia

Reposted from omegaletter.com
Prophecy - Signs
Monday, December 18, 2017
Pete Garcia 

I know I know…I’m supposed to write a Christmas article because it’s the Monday before Christmas and that’s what’s on everyone’s mind. And I will…I promise, but in more of a roundabout way. As ironic as it seems, in the season when everyone focuses on the birth that changed history forever, I find myself thinking about death.

According to the Bible, human beings can only exist in two states of being, either life or death (2 Cor. 5:6-8). But as Christians, we understand that death for the believer is not the end, but more like a stepping-off point where we enter into the real and infinitely more permanent state of existence. It is moving from one realm of existence into another without any hesitation or delay. In other words, death is not the termination of consciousness, but rather, an immediate transition from one reality to another separated only by a heartbeat.

For those of us who have lost someone close, understand, that their existence now is more real than ours is presently. They are in a greater state of being and consciousness than even the smartest person(s) who have ever lived in this life. They understand everything.
The world we live in was designed to accommodate our temporary existence. This means that the current world is also temporary and fading away (1 John 2:17).

The world we enter into at death is permanent and eternal (2 Cor. 4:16-18). So in one sense, our current world is very much like the Matrix, in that it is merely a copy or a façade of the corresponding spiritual reality. Our world and the next is not separated by distance, but by dimensionality. During certain periods of time, the veil between our world and the spiritual realm was either very thin or non-existent (ex. before Adam and Eve’s fall). During other periods, the veil was impermeable and marked by its opaqueness. The Apostle Paul notes…
For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. 1 Cor. 13:12

When someone passes away, the common and socially respectful thing to say in acknowledgment to that, is either “they’re in a better place now” or “rest in peace.” Truth be told, we don’t know if either is true unless we knew whether that person was a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. We say what we say because it would be considered rude and inconsiderate to do otherwise.

It has become vogue in the military to respond with “till Valhalla” as a means to acknowledge a fellow soldiers’ passing. They say that since Valhalla was the place (according to Nordic mythology) where warriors supposedly went to after they died. The trip to Valhalla required the winged-escort by the famed Valkyries (women warriors) to the great hall. The great hall was where the immortals joined the eternal party marked with copious amounts of drinking, fighting, revelry, and more drinking for all eternity.

From a purely fleshly standpoint, that sounds like a lot of fun.
But then I got to thinking…at what point, in that particular version of eternity, does Valhalla go from being fun to not being fun.
I mean, if you did the same thing over and over and over for all eternity….at what point does that become hell in and of itself? I mean, after a thousand years of fighting, drinking, and revelry, you’ve only just begun. Now repeat that same scenario times infinity, and I can’t see how that remains interesting or entertaining unless you existed in some type of perpetual time-loop like the Groundhog Day movie.

The same could be said for Islam’s version of the afterlife. On the surface, a paradise world with 70 virgins sounds fantastic? Especially if you grew up in the Middle East where all you knew was hot dusty deserts, fighting and violence, poverty, and brutality. But let’s say for the sake of argument, even if their version of the afterlife were true, and each virgin was absolutely stunning, the food was the best eternity could offer, and the atmosphere was completely serene…at what point does even that Islamic paradise quit being fun? At what point does their version of paradise become hell?

Let’s be honest, as sentient beings, we can’t do the same thing over and over and over without repetition killing our enthusiasm.
Buddhism and Hinduism vary slightly as compared to the above scenarios because of their views on reincarnation, but the premise remains the same. If you keep having to come back to this reality to “get it right,” at what point does that repetition turn into a living hell? Even if one made it into Nirvana and had complete enlightenment, and ‘oneness’ with the universe, at what point does even that become old, and eventually, torturous? After a million years? A hundred million years?

And yet, eternity drones on.
Likewise, Mormonism teaches a form of this for those who have dutifully followed the Mormon faith. Those who have, are promised to enter into the highest form of existence (celestial) where they are promised to be creators (and gods in their own right) with their own worlds. Now add infinity on to this. This creates a huge dilemma for the Mormons, as they now have the conundrum of eternal-progression, but I digress.

The reason I mention all of the above examples is that eternity is forever. I might have just sounded like Captain Obvious here, but we mortals have no real way of dealing with the topic of eternality since we can’t fathom something existing without an end-point. We can’t wrap our finite minds around the subject because it exceeds any known, tangible example we could render as comparable. Even to the most hardened atheist, the universe and all its mysteries had a beginning (i.e…the Big Bang) and will likewise have an end at some unknown future point.

Since we can’t conceptualize eternity into anything tangible, we use analogies that help to understand the gravitas of the subject. Jack Kinsella once put it this way when speaking about the death of Osama Bin Laden.
Suppose a seagull were to take a grain of sand from the East Coast and drop it off on the West Coast. Every ten thousand years, our seagull would transport another grain of sand from the East Coast to the West Coast. When every grain of sand on every beach on the entire East Coast has been transferred to the West Coast (one grain at a time, every ten thousand years), Osama's eternity will be just getting started. From Here to Eternity

The Bible describes only two potential realities for those who enter into eternity. We either go to be with our Creator God, or we are separated from Him forever. Those who die without placing their faith and trust in the finished work of Jesus Christ’s atoning work on the Cross will forever be separated from God (John 3:36, Hebrews 9:26-28). That might sound overly exclusive, but Jesus Himself said this of salvation, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6

Truth be told, even if hell was not the biblical definition of a place where final judgment consisted of: Eternal separation from God, darkness, pain, fire, brimstone, lake of fire, etc., doing the same thing over and over for all eternity (no matter what it was) would inevitably become a living and torturous hell. This is why every religion and belief system apart from biblical Christianity, are equal in their inability to deal with the concept of eternity and the afterlife.

But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Cor. 2:9

As one who personally saw it with his own eyes (2 Cor. 12:1-5), Paul had no way to put what he saw into words. This should validate and distinguish Christianity from any other, since only Christianity truly deals with man’s inadequacy for dealing with something far outside his scope of comprehension. Furthermore, what Paul quotes here (Isaiah 64) still can only describe God’s attributes in how it interacts with our physical world. In other words, as indescribable is God’s Being is as a Being (He is the Becoming One), so too is the realm in which He physically dwells.

A popular misconception people have about heaven is that it will be one, long, extended church service. If that were true, even that would become hellish if we were allowed to retain who we are as sentient beings. Simply put, we weren’t wired to do the same thing over and over forever. Will we worship in heaven? Absolutely. I’m sure even the most spirit-filled and inspiring worship we have here, will absolutely pale in comparison to the ones there. But I do not believe that is all there is to heaven.

We finite beings cannot comprehend the things which God has in store for our eternity-future, thus we default to compare it to what we think Christianity consists of today, which primarily centers on the church. Since the Bible acknowledges that we cannot comprehend heaven in any meaningful sense, it is of comfort to me since anything we try and contribute to it simply can not do it justice.

Another popular misconception is to view all eternity in light of what the Bible says about the Kingdom Age (Isaiah 2, 11, 66, Rev. 20, etc.). The truth is, the Bible only hints at what is beyond the millennial (1,000 years) reign of Christ on the earth. Only Revelation chapters 21-22 mentions what comes AFTER the Kingdom (or Millennial) Age.

But if God was able to speak our universe into existence in a matter of days, how much more could He do in two-thousand years? Some will argue that to God, a day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years, a day (Psalm 90:4, 2 Peter 3:8), and thus it’s only been two-thousand years (or two days) since Christ ascended. But Moses tells us in Exodus 24:11 that God created our existence in six literal 24-hour days. If God used our measurement of time to show us how He did it, how much more could He do in two-thousand years (John 14:1-3)? After all, Our God is a Creator by His very nature. But not only is He a Creator, but also a Sustainer. Jesus is the Word of God and through Him, every molecule in the universe is held together by Him (Col. 1:27).

A Bit of Speculation
I think the problem we have with thinking that God can’t create any new beings in eternity future, is since Christ has come once to pay for sins (Hebrews 9:26-28), any new sentient creations would be outside the realm of redemption. However, if Satan and his influencers were no longer a factor in corrupting said future-race, they may not need it. Free will (or what was allowed to us) may also not be available as it was for us in the future eternity. Those beings (if there are new beings) will have their own operating system they fall under, perhaps some perpetual state of innocence whereby we (the redeemed from our ages), were finally deemed worthy to co-rule with Christ in their future history.

Final Thought
Lastly, if we can fall so easily in love (or at least fascination) with the things of this life, how much more will we be when given glorified bodies that are the perfect, incorruptible, versions of ourselves that will never age, sicken, or die, all the while presiding with our God and Creator for all of eternity? This is the same God who left the glory of heaven and all of its indescribable attributes and wonders, to be born in a lowly manger, to an unknown family, with only the angels and a few shepherds as fanfare. He did all of that, so He could redeem us from being eternally separated from Himself. God is good.
So in that light, Merry Christmas and Maranatha!
About Pete Garcia
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