Gathering at the Door

Devotional thoughts for January 2017

(Click here to read Monday Musings ... where I discuss the thinking that led to this article.)

And all the city was gathered together at the door (Mark 1:33)

Gathering might be the best way to describe the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry… but abandoning is a better way to describe its end — and particularly the part near the cross. How people do flock to a new work! …but how they abandon a work that is work indeed. Many believers have no spiritual staying power, and the Body of Christ suffers as its fickle saints flit from church to church.

This is not to say that every instance of strong initial growth is bad… it’s just the opposite in fact. Living things (like human babies) develop rapidly near conception, but their growth rate levels off in adulthood. The Body of Christ is just like that; it is also a living organism (Ephesians 4:15; 1 Peter 2:4-5), so the initial growth and excitement over Jesus’ ministry was entirely in order. After all, the kingdom of God was “at hand” … but how was this different?

First of all, Jesus taught in a new way — as one who had authority (Luke 4:32). Second of all (and perhaps most famously), he cast out demons, healed the sick… he even raised the dead! These signs showed that the Father had sent him (John 3:2). Of course people sought him out… well… not everybody; not the religious establishment. Jesus called them out for skewing God’s law (Matthew 23:23). Plus, they were missing the very point of their religion… and these were no small insults. But the embedded religionists were committing no small errors.

Their hate for Jesus might have stopped at the cross if Jesus had stopped at the cross. But he… and inconveniently for them… rose from the dead. This vexed the religionists. But the risen Christ would soon ascend to the Father, so he promised that the Holy Spirit would come as a new Helper for a new age… but here’s the best part: when the Spirit came, he found that thousands of people were still gathered together at Jesus’ door… and the fledgling Church grew mightily.

With Jesus gone, however, his enemies tried to stop the disciples from teaching in his name… which they refused to do. But Gamaliel, a Pharisee, advised the council to let this Jesus-thing run its course. He reasoned that if a mere man were behind this movement, it would come to nothing, but if God were behind it, who could stop it!
(Acts 5:34).

I wish that every person on earth were like Gamaliel — willing to wait and to assess the data. But instead, we have today what we had then: a body of people committed to an embedded doctrine rather than to the revealed truth. Now, the council agreed with Gamaliel… sort of… but the fact that they beat and admonished the apostles shows that their hearts were hardened. Yet this is not a story of rejection… because rejection is a good thing if it is done as an informed choice; that’s the core of the scientific method. But rejection is evil when the data is categorically ignored… as in refusing to even consider non-physical reasons that the universe exists — but especially in light of the Borde, Guth, Vilenkin Theory. The BGV Theory shows us mathematically that no reasonable universe is “past-incomplete.”

Any universe that is not past-complete is also not eternal… which means that a causal agent — but one which transcends space and time — has created it. Furthermore, we find that our own universe is fine-tuned to sustain advanced biological life… but not broadly… only right here on earth — and even non-believing scientists acknowledge the anthropological principle. But are you hearing much of this on TV — today’s altar of embedded religion? Or are you still gathered at doors like this — dated doors — doors that pitched philosophy as science?

“The Cosmos is all that is or was or ever will be.” (Carl Sagan)

Every month, scientific evidence that supports a God-created universe increases factorially — which might sound like an extraordinary boast. But the universe is a big place — and it is continually under global observation and measurement. As such, science supplies us with a lot of data… which in turn generates a lot of analysis. Well, the data is in. If you are not a theist, and if you are basing that stand on the hope that even just one theoretical universe (let alone the one staring us in the face) might be eternal or self-existent, then it’s time for you to find another door.

“I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.” (Jesus Christ) (John 10:9).

(Mainsail Ministries articles often have a preamble where I discuss the thinking that went into them. These are called Monday Musings — and if you haven’t read the one associated with this article — consider doing so at the following link: 20161226 Gathering at the door).

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