John 3:6 “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
I think that a whole book could be written on the subject of “spiritual warfare” and sure that volumes surely have been. Even though I was not risen in a church going Christian home, I had a sense of “right” and “wrong”, but that didn’t stop me from doing “wrong” or not feeling bad about what I did, until I got caught. The “straight and narrow’ path was somewhat visible but not truly defined and surely not communicated properly why (blind to much), except that basically “good” people followed a certain social order that maintained the community in a peaceful and organized public, neighborhood by neighborhood. It was the secular “rhyme and reason” of harmony as a Christian nation back then that trusted and believed in God, even if we didn’t understand the scope of seriousness that the consequences of sin produced – “wrong was wrong”. But who did we trust really?
What a surprise it was when I learned that the sin that I thought was only a misdemeanor was actually a capital crime in the eyes of the Lord God. The gospel message was “watered down” to candy-coat the biblical truth that sin brings death and separation. I really thought that just about everyone was going to heaven to be with God when they died. Did you think that too? But actually, God is not grading our lives “on the curve” or in the scales of more good than bad. It seemed like one day I was doing bad things, than one day I decided to start doing good things in my opinion. I believed that if I was broke ethically or morally, I could fix it and everything would be "right". Come to find out, I didn't know the complete gospel story and couldn't fix sin without paying for it. But, I found that I had an “I” problem, not helped by society. God wasn’t in the equation and the reality of sin wasn't clear or connecting. The true moral compass of the Word of God found in the Holy Bible were learned and not being applied. To be “born again” / “born of the Spirit” made as much sense to me as it did to Nicodemus when Jesus presented it to him. I was missing critical details because I didn't read the owner's manual God that provided and used others defining ideas or "made up" my own "good sounding" rules. I could not see or understand what I did not have or know the kingdom of heaven. And it upset me that I thought that I had it “right”, but didn’t. I wanted to have it "right". God is in the helping business. He wants us to have it "right", and God helped.
John 3:10-12 Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?
Let’s continue this thought on the next post.
In Christ, Brian