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When Jesus showed up on earth in the form of a human being, He showed up in Israel. He came in the form of an ethnic Jew. In His 33 year long charade as a human, He lived in a Jewish society which claimed to uphold the Laws of the Torah. Judaism was the national religion of the Jews, and true Judaism is supposed to be an adherence to Yahweh’s Old Covenant. Of course Jews who promoted Judaism in the New Testament were like Christians who promote Christianity today: the religion being promoted was a far cry from what that religion is really supposed to be about.
Now because the Jews that Jesus was hanging out with had turned Judaism into something that it was never supposed to be, Jesus spends a lot of time pointing out the error in their ways. We find many passages in which Jesus points out specific things that religious Jews are doing in the name of Judaism which Yahweh does not approve of. And since Yahweh is the God of Judaism, if you’re doing stuff He doesn’t like, clearly you’re doing it wrong. This was the point Jesus made many times as He railed at Jewish priests, teachers and commoners: He kept saying “You guys are doing it wrong. Yahweh defined how Judaism is supposed to work, and you have turned it into something else. You need to wake up and get a clue: you’re not the judges, Yahweh is. You either play by His rules or you’re going to end up in Hell.”
The reason Jesus was so ticked about the games the Jews were playing is that while they were busy twisting Yahweh’s words and making up lies about what He demanded, they went around promoting themselves as right in His eyes. We Christians are up to the same shenanigans today: we intentionally lie about the contents of the Bible, we mangle the meaning of passages, and we teach lies about who our Creators are and what They demand of us. Then we tell ourselves that we’re saved, and therefore we can disrespect our Gods as much as we want because our place in Heaven is secure and Christians are excused from being targets of God’s wrath. Of course we’re deluding ourselves: Christians are not at all excused from being disciplined for their rebellion, and if we don’t respect our Gods, we will certainly experience negative consequences for our defiance even in Heaven. Today we Christians like to pretend that we get to decide how Divine judgment will work, and naturally we invent a system in which we’ll be mega-blessed and those we hate will end up frying. It was the same with the New Testament Jews. The religious leaders of their society had also redefined Divine judgment and Yahweh’s requirements for salvation. According to their own definition of these things, the pompous Pharisees and snooty Sadducees were convinced that they were going to be exalted in Heaven by a God who was as impressed with their righteousness as they were. Yet in reality, all of these folks were on their way to Hell, as are many souls today who go around claiming to be saved. The reality is that we don’t get to tell our Gods how They will think or who They will decide to save and damn. If we don’t conform to Their rules, we’re going to pay for our defiance with some terrifying consequences.
So what do you do with people who are clinging to a bunch of arrogant delusions that Yahweh thinks they’re fabulous when He really doesn’t? You keep whacking them across the face with truth and you do it none too gently. In the Gospels, we find Jesus being quite the rude dude as He publicly bashes self-righteous preachers and slams Jewish commoners for thinking far too much of themselves. It’s not that Jesus wants everyone to go around thinking they’re sinful scum. He just wants their souls to get out of snark mode and start respecting God again. He wants them to stop calling sin righteousness and acting like Yahweh is some doormat who they can push around without consequences. He wants them to rediscover what reverential submission to God means, and to get them there, He keeps pointing out how far they’ve strayed from obeying Yahweh’s Old Covenant Laws.
Now every law has two aspects to it. What the law literally commands is called the letter of the law. For example, you see the speed limit is posted as 45 mph on the street where you’re driving. That speed limit sign is communicating a law to you, and if you break that law, you can suffer legal consequences, such as having to pay a hefty fine. But if you cruise around certain areas of America, you’ll find that no one is obeying the posted speed limits. Everyone’s flying down roads and highways a good 5-30 miles over the legal limit and no one is getting fined. What’s going on here? Well, many law enforcement officers care more about the spirit of a law than they do the letter of the law, and for this reason, they let a lot of technical violations of the law go unpunished.
So what’s the spirit of a law? This term refers to the general principle that a specific law is trying to promote. The spirit of traffic laws is to maintain safety on the roadways by penalizing hazardous driving. If the posted speed is 45 mph, and an officer sees everyone traveling at 55 mph, but they’re doing so in an orderly way, then he might decide that the spirit of the law is not being violated, thus he doesn’t pull anyone over even though the letter of the law is being disobeyed. But if he sees one fellow swerving in and out of the lanes at 55 mph, then the officer might pull that fellow over because he looks like he has the potential to cause an accident with his excessive lane changing. When the officer pulls the fellow over, he can use the letter of the law as an excuse and fine the driver for speeding. But what the officer is really concerned about is not the speeding, but the hazardous manner in which the driver is operating his vehicle.
The spirit of any law is always more important than the letter of that law. It’s not possible to create a perfect body of laws. The technical language always gets in the way, and when technical language is elevated in importance over the spirit of the law, justice systems quickly become corrupt. This is what the Pharisees and Sadducees did to Yahweh’s Old Covenant Laws: they got so obsessed with technical language that they discounted the general principles that those laws were supposed to be promoting. As a result, their application of those laws ended up leading people totally away from where Yahweh wanted them to be. But discounting the spirit of Yahweh’s Laws was just one game that the Jews played. The second major game they played was to discount the letter of Yahweh’s Laws by changing the meaning of the technical language Yahweh had used. Let’s now discuss each of these strategies in more detail and see how Jesus addressed them.
THE LETTER OF THE LAW
Salvation has always been a matter of soul attitude, not perfect behavior. Under the Old Covenant, souls who sincerely and sufficiently submitted to Yahweh on earth ended up being taken to Heaven when they died. Well, when we hate God, we aren’t about to submit to Him, nor are we going to try and honor Him with our soul attitude. Most humans decide to hate God. The New Testament Jews were all humans, and in the Gospels, we find that the vast majority of the Jews living in Israel have no use for pleasing Yahweh. The spiritual darkness among ethnic Jews is so bad at this time that Jesus keeps commenting on it. Once when a non-Jew displayed sincere respect for God, Jesus responded by saying:
“Truly I tell you, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matt. 8:10-12)
The picture Jesus paints here is that of hated Gentiles getting to hobnob in Heaven with the greatly revered Abraham, Isaac and Jacob while ethnic Jews are getting thrown into Hell. These Jews think that merely being Jewish is good enough to secure them a place in eternity, yet Jesus keeps warning them over and over again through lectures and parables that salvation is a matter of soul attitude and their current soul attitudes are seriously rotten. Then, to get them back on track, He keeps throwing out specific examples of how they are deceiving themselves about being right in Yahweh’s eyes.
Salvation has always been a matter of soul attitude, not perfect behavior. But the New Testament Jews had decided that salvation was obtained through perfectly keeping all of Yahweh’s Old Covenant Laws. The problem with this theory is that Yahweh’s Laws are impossible to keep: the technical language He uses calls for a kind of moral purity that humans simply aren’t capable of. Well, the Jews found a clever way to get around this obstacle: they simply changed the definitions of the words Yahweh used. By the time they were done limiting the definitions of words like murder and adultery, they could easily claim to be sinless. It’s rather like what Christians have done to the concept of virginity today. They make out on the couch with their date for hours while everyone’s hands are roaming everywhere, but then they say they’re still sexually pure because they haven’t technically had intercourse. Well, this is total baloney, but we humans are addicted to these kinds of games. Lying is a sin when your enemy does it, but when you do it, that’s just you trying to help protect someone’s feelings. Gossip is a sin when your coworkers are snickering about you, but when you’re unloading about them at your weekly bible study, you’re just explaining your prayer request. The New Testament Jews were huge fans of this kind of hypocrisy and in His famous Sermon on the Mount, Jesus blasts everyone with a much needed reality check by pointing out the vast discrepancy between their definitions of words, and Yahweh’s.
“You have heard that it was said, Do not commit adultery. But I tell you, everyone who looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into Hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to go into Hell!” (Matt. 5:27-30)
Yikes. Here the Jews were feeling good about the adultery thing, because they’d redefined it to be an external behavior which they could easily avoid doing. But now that Jesus has turned it into an internal earthsuit response, suddenly the easy command becomes impossible. What man can keep his earthsuit from feeling aroused by some sexy babe strutting by with her pants painted on and her chest falling out of her shirt? There are certain realities about how these bodies of ours are wired. We’re lusty little things, and when we watch those hot and steamy sex scenes on television or read about heaving bosoms and screams of ecstasy in our pornographic romance novels, we’re lusting. We’re lusting big time. Fantasizing about dream lovers, mentally undressing that person we have a crush on, flirting with our friend’s hot new boyfriend just to see if maybe we can redirect his interest towards ourselves—if Jesus is going to define things like this as adultery, then suddenly we’re all going to Hell. This isn’t good.
“You have heard that it was said to our ancestors, Do not murder, and whoever murders will be subject to judgment. But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of Hell!” (Matt. 5:21-22)
Oh, come now—Yahweh is going to put a moment of anger and the blurting out of some hateful sentiment on the same level as murder? Yes, He is. You see, God doesn’t fuss around with our pinched up definitions of sin. His definition of sin is so staggeringly broad that it knocks us onto the ground feeling utterly wretched and despaired of ever coming within a million miles of moral purity. This is how it is supposed to be, because God’s purpose in sticking us with sinful natures is not to give us an obstacle that we can easily overcome, but to give us a context in which to submit to Him and an understanding of how utterly dependent we are on Him to do anything good (see The Great Gift of Sin: Why Our Depravity Gives Us Hope).
Sin can’t be overcome, but this doesn’t have to lead to despair because succeeding with God has nothing to do with moral purity. Pleasing God has always been a matter of soul attitude, not a matter of overcoming our own depravity. We can’t overcome our own depravity, which is why the apostle James was such a dingdong for telling people to “rid themselves of all moral filth and evil” (Jam. 1:21). And then there’s foolish John, who makes the utterly delusional claim that:
No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. (1 Jn. 3:9)
Clearly John has totally changed the definition of sin to think that sinless living is possible. And this John was with Jesus during the Sermon on the Mount, but clearly he wasn’t being a very attentive listener. This arrogant attitude of “I can rise above sinfulness with some assistance from Christ” is a mindset that is very popular among Christians today. Yet why are we so obsessed with the importance of being sinless? Because like the Jews, we’re trying to make salvation a behavioral issue instead of one of soul attitude.
When you aren’t serious about pleasing God, you don’t want to think about things like reverence, submission, dependency and trust. Instead, you want to pretend that salvation is simply a matter of throwing up some sinner’s prayer, tossing Jesus’ Name around a lot and trying to be “a good person.” Then God will be impressed with you and give you a bunch of gold crowns when you get to Heaven. This is how many Christians think, because they’re trying to make salvation a matter of good works. The problem is that we humans are incapable of doing anything truly good on our own. Everything we do has self-serving motivations behind it, and we can’t go a day without committing all kinds of sins. What do you do when you can’t stop sinning? You change the definition of sin. You come up with a billion reasons why it never counts when you do something that God says is wrong, then you stand around telling yourself that at salvation Christ freed you from the desire to sin when in reality He did no such thing.
Christ has no interest in making you un-depraved, because keeping you stuck in an earthsuit that craves evil makes for some fabulous spiritual growth lessons. Take a look at how arrogant and judgmental Christians become who really think they’ve conquered the sin issue and you’ll gain an appreciation for why we need to stay depraved. Even in our sinful states, we’re constantly taking the bows for what God does. Imagine how out of control we’d be if we didn’t have our sinful natures anchoring us down.
Reeducating the Jews about how Yahweh defines various sins was one strategy we see Jesus using in the Gospel books as He urges the Jews to stop with their incessant rebellion. His famous command in Matthew 5:48 is another fabulous example of this:
“So you must be perfect, just as your Father in Heaven is perfect.”
The Jews were so far gone in their delusions of righteousness that it took extreme language like this to wake them up. Today many Christians are in the same state. They’re so busy feeling smug about how much better they’re doing than everyone else, that the only way to get through to them is to say, “So are you saying you’re as perfect as God?” And yet for some, even this question wouldn’t serve to show them how absurd they are being because Christians are taught to view themselves as having the righteousness of Christ. Now there’s a laugh. We most certainly do not have the righteousness of Christ, because Christ is perfect, while we are utterly depraved. So where do we get this insane idea that we are Christ’s equals in righteousness? From Paul, of course. Paul was a Pharisee, and Pharisees promoted themselves as sinless in the eyes of Yahweh. When Paul faked his conversion to Christianity, he brought his arrogance with him, thus we find him preaching that Christians become some kind of perfect merely by their association with Christ.
Yahweh made Christ who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Christ we might become the righteousness of Yahweh. (2 Cor. 5:21)
Because no one wants to face the fact that Paul rejects the Divinity of Christ, and therefore all of his references to God are references to Yahweh, Christian teachers misinterpret this verse to mean that Paul says we Christians have obtained the righteousness of Christ. But no, what he’s clearly saying is that thanks to Christ’s atonement for our sins on the cross, we are now as perfect as Yahweh in the righteousness department. Nice try, but no. Yahweh never taught people to view themselves as being His equals in righteousness simply because they offered some atonement sacrifice. It was more like atonement sacrifices shielded people from getting utterly destroyed and condemned by Yahweh. But no sacrifice negated the concept of Divine discipline, nor were they ever to be viewed as shrinking the difference between the created and the Creator in any way. Paul is putting out very dangerous teaching here, and naturally our egos love it, so we just swallow it down without question, then we strut around claiming to be clones of God in righteousness. Paul goes on to say:
Therefore, no condemnation now exists for those in Christ Jesus, because the Spirit’s law of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. What the law could not do since it was limited by the flesh, Yahweh did. Yahweh condemned sin in the flesh by sending His own Son in flesh like ours under sin’s domain, and as a sin offering, in order that the law’s requirement would be accomplished in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. (Rom. 8:1-4)
When did Yahweh ever say He was condemning sin? When did Jesus ever say He came to break us free from the shackles of sin? When did He ever say He came to turn us into righteous beings who were able to no longer “walk according to the flesh”? Jesus didn’t make any of these claims. Instead, He likened Himself to an Old Covenant atonement sacrifice. It was understood by all that such sacrifices did nothing to change the nature of the humans who made them, nor did such sacrifices prevent future sins from happening. What was special about Jesus’ atonement sacrifice was that He said He was taking care of all sins in one act. In other words, He was ending the need for future atonement sacrifices, thus bringing an end to the entire sacrificial system.
How important is atonement for sins? It has never been that important. We only pretend it’s important today because we have redefined salvation to be a matter of works. If salvation is all about works, then sin becomes an enormous issue, and complete atonement for sin becomes your only hope of salvation. But if salvation is a matter of soul submission, then atonement doesn’t solve anything. Jesus said He atoned for the sins of the world, yet the world is not saved. Why not, if atonement is such a big deal? Because atonement by itself is meaningless.
Salvation comes through sincere soul submission to Yahweh, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. Soul submission has nothing to do with having a sinless nature. And yet here in Romans 8, Paul is talking about the atonement of Christ as if that made some critical difference to people’s standing with Yahweh. No, it didn’t. Before Christ died for our sins, people were quite able to succeed with Yahweh. No one needed Christ to die, because getting right with God has never been about atonement. Christ didn’t die for our sins to elevate the importance of atonement, but rather to get us to stop obsessing over that whole issue and get our focus back onto what really matters: soul attitude.
The point of the cross was to put an end to the whole atonement obsession that the Jews were caught up in due to their effort to make salvation a matter of moral perfection instead of soul submission. But what does Paul do? He preaches that salvation is a matter of atonement. He says we all have to have faith that Christ fully atoned for our sins and have confidence in the power of His Blood. Well, no, that’s not what Christ taught. Christ taught we have to submit to our Gods as the Supreme Authorities. Both Christ and Yahweh hammered the point that soul submission was the essential thing.
Read through the parables that Jesus fires off and you’ll find themes of submission woven throughout them. Jesus invents scenario after scenario in which there is some authority figure telling subordinates what to do. The subordinates who respect the authority figure and submit to his preferences and commands are the ones who are rewarded, while those who refuse to be impressed by the difference in rank between them and the authority figure end up condemned. In the Parable of the Talents, servants who made an earnest attempt to please their master are rewarded, while the guy who fluffs off the master’s priorities gets tortured. In the Parable of the Wedding Feast, a king sends out invitations to a grand feast. People who respond with a bunch of attitude and treat his invitation as meaningless end up despised by the king, while those who eagerly respond are warmly received. In the Parable of the Tenants (Matt. 21:33-44), the tenants of a vineyard are condemned because they refuse to respect the authority of the vineyard owner’s son. The owner in the story represents Yahweh, the son is Christ. The tenants are the religious leaders in Israel—Pharisees like Paul who are trying to make salvation solely a matter of managing sins instead of dealing with soul attitude. Go ahead: try to find parables about atonement. There aren’t any. All of the parables Jesus tells which address the subject of Divine judgment focus on how subordinates respond to the will of those who outrank them.
Jesus’ parables discuss the way we will actually be judged by our Gods in eternity: we’ll be judged by how our souls responded to Their Authority. Did we earnestly seek to please Them or did we consider Their preferences irrelevant? Did we submit to Their Authority and respect Their Supreme Rank or did we act like They had no right to tell us what to do? Jesus and Yahweh have always taught that it is our soul’s response to Them that matters. But what does Paul do? He makes it all about atonement. Are our sins paid for or not? That’s the important issue for Paul. Paul doesn’t teach us to submit to Jesus as the Supreme Authority in life, but rather to value Him as the Guy who clears our debt of sin with Yahweh. What happened to submission? Paul has no use for it. He’s a Pharisee, and Pharisees focused on moral perfection. When Paul faked his conversion to Christianity, he brought this same mindset with him, thus we find him going on and on about how glorious it is that Christ died for our sins and how we all ought to strive to do good.
So, my brothers and sisters, we must not be ruled by our sinful selves or live the way our sinful selves want. If you use your lives to do the wrong things your sinful selves want, you will die spiritually. But if you use the Spirit’s help to stop doing the wrong things you do with your body, you will have true life. (Rom. 8:12-13)
Paul says the way to please Yahweh is to strain and strive not to give in to the depraved desires of our flesh. It’s all about sin with this man. Paul wants us to obsess over the battle with our flesh and over Yahweh’s moral code instead of focusing on developing the soul attitudes of reverence, submission, dependency and trust.
If you use your lives to do the wrong things your sinful selves want, you will die spiritually. (Rom. 8:13)
Wow, it’s like Jesus never came and we’re all stuck in New Testament Israel listening to pompous Pharisees waxing on about how perfect they are. One minute Paul says it’s fabulous that Christ has totally atoned for our sins, but then he says we have to keep striving to stop doing bad things if we want to get into Heaven. Salvation is all about managing your sins. Be careful not to sin too much. Focus on your behaviors. Obsess over acting righteous in your flesh, because that way you’ll never get around to really submitting to your Makers with your soul. Value Christ only as a Source of atonement, but don’t submit to Him as God Almighty, because He’s just a human being who mediates between us and Yahweh. Yahweh is the God we’re really supposed to be striving to please, and all Yahweh cares about is how sinful we are. This is what Paul teaches because Paul is totally rejecting the importance of soul attitude. Paul wants Yahweh to be as obsessed with behavior as Paul is, because then Paul never has to bother with sincere soul submission. If God is only focused on our actions, then we can be as snarky as we want inside our hearts.
THE SPIRIT OF THE LAW
Anyone who preaches that salvation can be obtained through keeping our rate of sin down to an acceptable level is clearly rejecting Yahweh’s definition of sin. As Jesus demonstrated during the Sermon on the Mount, it is impossible for anyone to satisfy the technical requirements of Yahweh’s Laws, because Yahweh’s definition of sin is so broad. Jesus’ point was to prove to the Jews how utterly futile their attempts to acquire salvation through righteousness were. You simply can’t ever be good enough for Yahweh—He is keeping the bar of perfection way too far above our heads on purpose because He doesn’t want us focused on behavior. He wants us focused on soul attitudes.
As He locks horns with the sin obsessed Pharisees over and over again throughout the Gospels, Jesus frequently reminds them of how far they’ve strayed from the spirit of Yahweh’s Laws. Although the technical language of the Laws made them impossible to satisfy, they still drove people towards the right soul attitudes of reverential submission. “Love Yahweh your God with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength.” It’s impossible to satisfy the literal demands of this Law, because you are a million miles from loving any of your Gods with all that you are. But you can certainly embrace the principle that this Law is teaching: God is supposed to come first in your life. Pleasing Him is of supreme importance. The spirit of the law is always more important than the letter of the law. Yahweh wanted His people to seriously pursue Him and to view His approval as being of supreme importance. He wasn’t interested in nailing them for failing to satisfy the technical language that He used.
But the Pharisees loved to obsess over technical language. When Yahweh said that certain insects were not to be eaten, and the Pharisees realized that some of those insects came in some itsy bitsy sizes, they thoroughly enjoyed making a big production out of straining fluids through cloths so they could be sure not to accidentally swallow a single gnat. Then there was tithing—Yahweh wanted a percent of everything to be given to the Temple. Fabulous. The Pharisees made a grand production out of donating an exact tenth of even the smallest plant in their herb gardens so they could prove they were tithing in every area. They paraded such rituals around as evidence that they were super righteous because look at all the trouble they were taking to satisfy the literal requirements of Yahweh’s Laws. But then Jesus came along and reamed them out for getting so obsessed with technicalities that they were neglecting important principles.
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel!” (Matt. 23:23-24)
Camels were also unclean foods. Jesus says that by paying no regard to the spirit of Yahweh’s laws, all of their efforts to obey the letter of those laws became meaningless. As they strain out a single gnat, it’s like they’re swallowing an entire camel. They’re focusing on trivialities instead of attending to the principles that Yahweh really cares about. Yahweh isn’t interested in counting gnats, He wants people to care about honoring Him in their souls. He doesn’t care about exact tenths, He cares about people treating others well out of a desire to please Him. When a religious leader asked Jesus which of Yahweh’s Laws was most important, Jesus said it was to love Yahweh with all that we are. Then He reminded everyone that treating others as we’d want to be treated was another important principle. He said that all of the instruction in the Old Testament could be boiled down to these two key principles, and neither of these principles is being focused on when we’re obsessing over counting gnats and divvying up spices. You simply aren’t going to get where God wants you to be by obsessing over your behavior—this is why fixating on sin and striving to keep your flesh in line is such a waste of time. We need to be focusing on God, not on our depravity. Focusing on God certainly won’t make our depravity go away, but when we’re listening to Him and sincerely caring about pleasing Him, He’ll show us when we need to do something about sin.
In life, the Holy Spirit doesn’t come anywhere close to convicting us about every sin we commit. This is because sin has never been the huge deal to our Gods that we pretend it is. Certainly there will be times when the Holy Spirit tells us to apologize or make amends. And if we start trying to call wrong right, He’s going to be on our case to repent and get back into alignment with His definition of sin. But pleasing our Gods has nothing to do with trying to keep our depraved flesh in check. Paul tells us to view Yahweh as the Guy who provides some helpful assistance in our personal battle against sin, but like James and John, Paul places the bulk of the responsibility for rising above sin on our own shoulders. Even Peter tries to tell us that we’ve “died to sin.”
Christ Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By His wounds you have been healed. (1 Pet. 2:24)
Healed from what? The desire to sin? The attraction to rebellion? Not hardly. We still find within ourselves a desire to wander from our Gods, to rebel against Their Authority and to elevate ourselves as Their superiors in wisdom and power. We haven’t died to anything. We’re the same people we were before we our Gods accepted us, but now that we have been accepted by Them, there is great hope to be had. For if we fully submit ourselves into Their hands and ask Them to make us all that They want us to be, They will mature us and grow us and develop us into souls who really do believe that pleasing Them is all that matters.
Christ didn’t die on a cross to give us the option of not sinning. Yahweh didn’t lay hundreds of Laws on the Jews to make them think moral perfection was well within their grasp. Our Gods have always taught that behavioral perfection and religious rituals are meaningless. It is our souls that we are judged by, not by the quality of an atonement sacrifice. Christ atoned for the sins of the whole world, yet most of the people in the world will end up in Hell. If that doesn’t put the value of atonement in perspective, what does? If we’re going to end up on the right side of our Gods, we have to stop putting our faith in human teachers who mangle what They say and push us to embrace worthless priorities. Soul attitude is everything. Without sufficient soul submission to your three glorious Creators, you’re going to join the apostle Paul in Hell. We humans don’t get to decide how Divine judgment works. Our Gods have told us how things will really be: we can either submit to Their program, or suffer the consequences for our rebellion.
Choosing the Right Priorities: How does God want us to treat our brothers?
Understanding Divine Election: Jacob I Loved, Esau I Hated (Malachi 1 & Romans 9)
Understanding Divine Judgment: Illumination, Empowerment & A God Who Delights In Mercy