Tag Archives: Resurrection

Victory in Jesus

This concept has puzzled me.  It’s prominent in a number of the hymns they make us sing in chapel at the shelter,[1] but no one explains it or preaches on it.  There is no Wikipedia page about it.

The chapel presenters seem to think that victory over sin and death pertains to what happens at the end of life, in that the real or born-again Christian goes to heaven instead of hell.  That’s not it.  It pertains instead to how one faces this life from day to day; as will be seen.

It appears that a doctrine of Christian victory as I shall explain it below was popular in some circles in the early 20th century, but has somehow been eclipsed by a now-more-prevalent view; as follows.  God has a plan (It says.), and the born-again or real Christian has access to that plan through prayer.  If prayer fails to bring clear direction, one should wait till such direction comes.  “Wait on the Lord” (Psalm 27:14), “and He will direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:6).  Under no circumstances should one “lean unto one’s own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).

Thus the real or born-again Christian need never take risks in life and need never face disappointment.  Consistent with this view, some say disappointment comes only from sin; one has deviated from God’s plan.  And risk-taking or taking initiatives is, itself, sin.

Hogwash.

Christian victory accepts instead that one faces inevitable difficulties in life, but says that by God’s grace one can take them all in stride.   “Weeping may spend the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5).  “A righteous man falls seven times, but gets up again” (Proverbs 24:16).  In this way, it’s not that much different from what I call the Way of Peace, or from Stoicism.

Victory over sin and death, in this view, is like this:  every time one finds oneself in the midst of shattered dreams, it is a kind of death; every time one accepts the love of God and so gets back on one’s feet, it is a resurrection.

That’s victory in Jesus.

[1]Notably:
– “Victory in Jesus”
– “In the Name of Jesus”
– “Victory is Mine”
– “When We All Get to Heaven”

 

14:32

Friday, October 6.

I arrived at the shelter where I stay at 14:32.  There was no line of people waiting admission.  They nominally open the gate at 14:30, but in fact sometimes do at 14:15, 14:00 or even 13:00.  When I later asked what time they’d opened today, I was told 14:30.  That can’t be factual, though: given current intake procedures, they can’t possibly have processed 30+ persons in two minutes.

Marvin arrived at the same time.  I stayed outside to finish a cigarette, and he slipped in in front of me.  He got assigned #41, “my” bunk, a bottom bunk.  I got assigned the only available remaining bunk, #40, a top bunk and thus much less desirable.

If I had arrived only 30 seconds earlier, I would have been assigned “my” bunk, a bottom bunk, the one much more desirable.  I found myself scouring my memory as to anything I could have done to have left church even 30 seconds earlier.  I would recognize the mistake of looking only at my last activities before leaving; whereas 30 seconds at any point during the day would have made the difference.

I would recognize that I was “bargaining.”

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Why Christians believe

A new thread at Messiah Truth.

This is most emphatically not Jewish teaching.  I expect it correctly to be condemned as not-Jewish.  I also expect it to be condemned, correctly or not, as just plain wrong.

The point is to facilitate understanding of what motivates belief in the Christian myth.

Sunday was Palm Sunday.  The appointed “Gospel” text this year was Luke 22:14-23:56, which covers from the beginning of the Last Supper up to Jesus’ burial.

The pastor normally reads the “Gospel” lesson.  Pastor’s voice quavered throughout this reading, which I found hard to figure since his beliefs are similar enough to mine.  We waded through all the problems in the text, e.g. the impossible trial at the High Priest’s house on Pesach.  But I also got re-acquainted with why Christians believe so fervently in this text.

Continue reading Why Christians believe