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Thread: Christ's Law

  1. #16

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:9c . . Stand on the side of the good.

    Christian CEOs on the boards of multi-national corporations have my sympathy. Good luck complying with that commandment.

    I recently watched a very interesting documentary on NetFlix that analyzed corporations; and they found that corporations, as a personality, typically exhibit all five of the psychopathic behaviors listed below.

    • Callous unconcern for the feelings of others.

    • Incapacity to maintain enduring relationships.

    • Reckless disregard for the safety of others.

    • Deceit and dissembling; viz: repeated lying, suppressing information, stretching the truth, and conning others for profit.

    • Failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors.

    One of corporate America's more shameful management practices is the exploitation of foreign poverty, cheap labor, defenseless employees, minimal safety requirements, and hardly any environmental regulations in order to keep costs down and the bottom lines of quarterly reports up. It's all about profits with corporations; while the human suffering exploited to obtain them is collateral damage, so to speak; and nowhere has that been more prevalent than the manufacture of textiles and garments.

    Another of corporations' rather annoying behaviors is their lack of patriotism. They have a fiduciary responsibility to shareholders which supersedes any wish they may have to pay their fair share of the tax burden imposed on their fellow citizens. Thus they contribute relatively little towards the Federal Government's ability to pay its bills in comparison to regular people.

    A popular corporate tax-saving dodge, which is perfectly legal, is the moving of their corporate headquarters offshore to countries where tax rates on profits are much lower than here in the USA; where they have a permanent haven just so long as they don't bring those profits into the country; which is really a shame because those profits could otherwise be invested here at home to create more jobs for Americans and thus strengthen the economy.

    Rom 12:10a. . Love each other with genuine affection

    Real affection is easy to imitate, but not so easy to duplicate. Going through the motions, is just not the same as feeling the feelings.

    Rom 12:10b . . Honor others over yourselves.

    Most alpha achievers would have trouble with that one. I mean. why be a winner if not to feel superior to everyone else and accumulate bragging rights and accolades? The alpha achiever's motto is: It's not enough to succeed: everyone else must fail.

    Feelings of value are important to everyone's sense of well being, but the alpha achiever feels only himself to be of any real value; in his mind's eye, those "below" him are of little worth, i.e. expendable and/or a dime a dozen. (cf. Est 6:6, Matt 27:26, Mark 12:38 39, and 3John9)

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  2. #17

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:11 . . Never be halfhearted in your work, but serve The Lord enthusiastically.

    Webster's defines 'halfhearted" as feeling or showing a lack of interest. The koinë Greek word for "work" is spoude (spoo-day') which refers to movement in regards to speed; i.e. velocity. In other words; the above is talking about dragging one's feet rather than getting with the program and expediting whatever it is you're assigned to do.

    A really good role model in this regard is Isaac's wife Rebecca; a most energetic chore girl. (Gen 24:10-20)

    Rom 12:12a . . Be glad for all God is planning for you.

    Christians unsure of their afterlife destination cannot, in all honesty and a good conscience, comply with that command. For all they know, God has hell planned for them. That's not something to be glad about.

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  3. #18

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:12b . . Be patient in trouble, and always be prayerful.

    Patience is something every so-called mature adult is supposed to have but relatively few seem able to produce. What we're talking about here is "composure" which Webster's defines as calmness: especially of mind, manner, or appearance.

    Composure is pretty easy to maintain when nothing is bothering us; but not so easy when we're upset, frightened, frustrated, worried, nervous, angry, irritated, annoyed, over-worked, dead tired, under pressure, stressed, chafed, interrupted, ignored, cut off in traffic, in deep credit card debt, a sudden death in the family, behind in your mortgage, your car payments and/or your student loan; injured, life changing news like your job outsourced to China or you've got cancer, involved in a school shooting, and/or your spouse announces they've met someone and wants a divorce. People tend to lose it and become unglued at times like that.

    "Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you." (1Pet 4:12)

    A "painful trial" can be likened to a process to which assayers subject samples of gold ore to evaluate its worth. If somebody can maintain their composure under the conditions I listed above, I'd have to say that they are a high-value ore. As for the rest of us; we would no doubt benefit from a dose of the fruit of the Spirit; hence the enjoinder to "always be prayerful".

    "The fruit of the Spirit is patience" (Gal 5:22)

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  4. #19

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:13a . . Share with God's people who are in need.

    I'm guessing "God's people" pertains to Jews. (Matt 25:31-46 and Rom 15:25-27)


    FYI: The Jews are God's people in accordance with a covenant that He made with their ancestor Abraham. (Gen 17:7-8)

    Rom 12:13b . . Practice hospitality.

    Webster's defines hospitable as: (1) given to generous and cordial reception of guests, (2) promising or suggesting generous and cordial welcome, (3) offering a pleasant or sustaining environment.

    In other words; a hospitable person is civil, courteous, thoughtful, easy on one's nerves, helpful, approachable, accommodating, and relaxing to be with.

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  5. #20

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:14 . . Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

    The koiné Greek word for "persecute" is dioko (dee-o'-ko) which means to pursue; i.e. to hound. In other words; a persecuting personality is one whose mission in life is to ruin somebody's day at every opportunity; and they are pretty good at finding ways to do it. Christians are under orders to remain calm with toxic people and not let them discourage the practice of hospitality.

    Rom 12:15 . .When others are happy, be happy with them. If they are sad, share their sorrow.

    A number of factors play a role in the making of an insensitive clod; one of which is defective areas of the brain called amygdalae. In brief, the amygdalae control, to a large extent, our emotions; i.e. our feelings, especially relative to empathy.

    By means of normal amygdalae, we are able to commiserate; which can be roughly defined as feeling sympathy and/or compassion as opposed to just going thru the motions. For example: I heard somewhere that half of us go to funerals to honor folk we couldn't be bothered with when they were alive and then lie through out teeth when we tell the family "I'm sorry for your loss."

    Defective amygdalae are usually a genetic problem; i.e. people with them were born that way. So, they are going to have a pretty difficult time of it when it comes to sharing in the happiness and/or the sorrow of others.

    "Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots?" (Jer 13:23)

    The answer to both those questions is of course NO; like they say: you can't get blood out of a turnip. So then, how is it reasonable to expect Christians with defective amygdalae to share the happiness of happy people and/or the sorrows of sad people?

    Well; it isn't reasonable, but neither is it hopeless seeing as how a portion of the fruit of the Spirit is love (Gal 5:22, cf. Isa 63:9). In other words: there's a supernatural remedy for psychopathic personality disorders.


    BTW: It's surprising the number of Christians that I've encountered, even Sunday school teachers, who honestly believe that emotions have no role whatsoever in the practice of Christianity.

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  6. #21

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:16a . . Live in harmony with each other.

    It isn't necessary to be in 100% agreement with others on everything in order to comply with that command. But it is necessary to make every effort to avoid feuding, one-upmanship, and debating. For some people, every disagreement is an act of war to be won at any cost. That's not harmony, that's hostility. It's far and away better for Christians to be diplomatic that to be defensive.

    "For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder." (2Cor 12:19-20)

    Rom 12:16b . . Don't be elitist, but willing to associate with people below you.

    Years ago I attended a Church singles' group meeting in a private home where everyone was seated on the floor chatting when I arrived. All the really cool people had gravitated together and left this rather geeky fellow sitting all by himself with no one to talk to. Well; I wasn't all that cool myself so I sat with the geek and as we conversed, I began to realize that in spite of his appearance, he was actually a pretty bright guy; but he and I were marginalized because the others didn't want to be seen with us

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  7. #22

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:16c . . Don't be wise in your own conceit.

    Webster's defines "conceit" as excessive self-appreciation of one's own worth or virtue.

    Conceit is uncivil, untrainable, and intolerable. It truly believes nobody beneath its dignity could possibly have anything to tell that it doesn't already know; and if it doesn't already know, then that's because the information possessed by those beneath its dignity isn't worth knowing.

    Those kinds of people will interrupt you right in the middle of your sentence and begin talking about their own perspective as if your voice is nowhere to be heard in the whole room. You know why they do that? Because they sincerely believe that nothing you are in the midst of saying is nearly as important as what they have to say. In other words: you, and your thoughts, are both superfluous.

    Conceited folk are generally very picky about their influences too; in other words, even if somebody is a Spirit-gifted Bible teacher, but are neither published, accredited, or properly educated, then forget it. That Spirit-gifted somebody is eo ipso undeserving of conceit's intellectual attention right out of the box.

    Conceit is not only stuck on itself; but very critical of others too. I've seen it to happen time and again that when a Spirit-gifted Bible teacher comes across with a personality like Elijah's or John the Baptist's that conceit summarily brushes them off as "unloving" no matter even if they speak as the very voice of God. In other words; conceit disdains to be taught; rather, conceit seeks to be accommodated.

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  8. #23

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:17a . . Never reciprocate evil with evil to anyone.

    That is a really tough command to follow; for example: when someone makes a demeaning comment about us, the urge to bounce back with a retort in kind is very difficult to resist.

    Rom 12:17b . . Respect what is right in the sight of all men.

    The koiné Greek word for "right" is a bit ambiguous. It can mean: honorable, decent, sensible, mature, conforming to social norms of decency and propriety, beautiful, virtuous, honest, having worth, fitting, and/or appropriate. Those are all good qualities and should be practiced not only inside church, but outside church too.

    Rom 12:18 . . If possible, so far as it in your power, be at peace with all men.

    Assertive, defensive, fault-finding, imperious, judgmental, confrontational, bossy, hard-nosed, implacable, moody, thin skinned, vindictive, spiteful people are not going to heaven. Why? Because heaven is a place of peace (Matt 5:9, Rom 14:17). Disagreeable people who fight at the drop of a hat simply don't fit in heaven and besides, not only would they be a fish out of water; but it wouldn't be fair to the others to let difficult people in to heaven where they would surely turn it into the same kind of hell to live in that they've made the earth.

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  9. #24

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:19 . . Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written: Vengeance is mine, I will repay; testifies The Lord.

    The focus is upon one's "own" revenge; in other words: if the matter can't be settled legally; let it go rather than take it upon yourself to be prosecutor, judge, jury, and executioner. Those who seek justice outside the justice system are no less criminals than the people they seek to punish.

    Rom 12:20 . . If your personal enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head.

    Way back when the television show
    SURVIVOR was in its second or third season, two of the women fell out of sorts and one vowed that even if the other were lying in the street near death from thirst, she'd walk right past and not give her so much as a drop of water.

    Bad form. Christians have to remain civil and not permit detestable people to dictate the way we treat our fellow men. It is far better for Christ's followers to exemplify humanitarian principles than satisfy a grudge.

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  10. #25

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 12:21 . . Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

    Compliance with that particular command requires some self control on our part because human nature's impulses usually steer us into the wrong course of action when coping with evil.

    Rom 13:1-5 . . Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.

    . . . For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.

    There are Christians who honestly believe that capital punishment is wrong, but according to the passage above, and the one below, capital punishment is divine.

    Gen 9:4-6 . . And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each man, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of his fellow man. Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made man.

    Rom 13:1-5 is a fair warning to Christians that should they break the law; to expect neither favoritism nor immunity. So then, if you can't do the time, then don't do the crime. Christians that commit capital crimes should expect their heads to roll just like any other capital criminal's head; and that goes for lesser crimes too, e.g. J-walking, illegal U-turns, feeding parking meters, drifting through stop signs without coming to a complete halt, exceeding the speed limit, unsafe lane changes, road rage, disturbing the peace, littering, trespassing, shoplifting, civil disobedience, animal abuse, etc.

    God has given government the right to play God; any Christian who opposes government's right to play God, is playing the Devil. God forbid! Christians really ought to be the most law-abiding people on Earth; but unfortunately, many are shamefully guilty of conduct unbecoming.

    1Pet 2:13-15 . . Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men.

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  11. #26

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 13:6a . . Pay your taxes

    While it's true that tax dollars often get wasted on fraud, graft, pork, bail outs, ear marks, and such things; by and large taxes are essential if we're to expect services like schools, parks, national defense, law enforcement, fire protection, Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps, foster care, endowments, reparations, flood control,
    TANF, and the maintenance of infrastructure, etc.

    Taxes are also used to pay the wages of civil servants.

    Rom 13:6b . . for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing.

    Rom 13:7 . . Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

    There is currently throughout America a wave of hate, slander, discontent, and disrespect for the current U.S. President the intensity and hysteria of which is unlike anything I've ever seen in my 73 years on this planet. I should hope that none of Christ's followers get caught up in it. We don't have to particularly like Mr. Trump, but we do have to honor his position. Don't be a Mordecai-- Esther's uncle is not a suitable role model for Christ's followers.

    Rom 13:8 . . Owe no man anything.

    Some have construed that verse to mean that it's a sin to have a mortgage, a car payment, and/or a credit card balance. However, the koiné Greek word for "owe" is opheilo (of-i'-lo) an ambiguous word with a number of meanings, one of which is to fail in duty; viz: fail to meet your obligations. In today's world; debt is pert near impossible to avoid; but debt is okay for Christians just so long as they pay their bills on time. Christ is neither pleased nor honored when his followers are known as deadbeats.

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  12. #27

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 13:12 . . Put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.

    Among the first things that God created for the cosmos was light (Gen 1:3). He didn't have to create darkness because darkness as per Gen 1:2 is just simply the default condition in the absence of light.

    At that time, God made a distinct difference between light and darkness (Gen 1:4). I think it is very notable that God labeled the light "good" but He didn't label the darkness good.

    I believe Gen 1:4 set the stage; in other words: from that point on in the Bible darkness typically represents something harmful and/or distasteful; while light always represents something tasteful and/or beneficial. So then we could label the deeds of darkness as deeds unbecoming Christ's followers, and we could label the armor of light as deeds befitting his followers. In other words: deeds befitting Christ's followers are their first line of defense in a world gone mad with evil.

    "Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech. He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil." (1Pet 3:10-12)

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  13. #28

    Post Re: Christ's Law

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    Rom 13:13 . . Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and envy.

    In the beginning, God labeled the light "day" and the darkness He labeled "night" (Gen 1:5). He then proceeded to describe day as "good" but He didn't say that night is good, i.e. I think we can safely assume that night is bad. So then; things done in the day are good things, while things done in the night are, by default, bad things. Day and Night, and Darkness and Light, are interesting figures of speech and can be seen in use at quite a few locations in the Bible; for example:

    "This is the judgment; that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God." (John 3:19-21)

    Envy can be a good dog or a bad dog, and when it's a bad dog, it's the combined meanness of a Pit Bull Terrier and a Rottweiler because envy fuels some very bitter rivalries. Wanting to be equal with others is one thing, but striving to be better than others is a horse of another color. Christians have got to be careful of that. This isn't optional by the way; no: it's required.

    What I find interesting about Christ's commandments is that his followers have to be told how to "properly conduct" themselves; viz: it's never assumed they can be trusted to instinctively and/or intuitively know how.

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  14. #29
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    Re: Christ's Law

    WHAT'S YOUR ANGLE?
    Galatians 6:14 - But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

  15. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by mailmandan View Post
    WHAT'S YOUR ANGLE?
    Sorry; I don't give interviews nor do I submit to interrogation.

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