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Yancey Book


jerryb
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"I fear that we have unconsciously accepted the model of "hard,cold,thin people" as the christian personality ideal". Philip Yancey..from his book"FINDING GOD IN UNEXPECTED PLACES".

 

Jesus was ALWAYS pushing people out of their comfort zones...always challenging them to think a different way...march to a different drummer. In one passage he said to fishermen who had fished all night and caught nothing.." Cast your nets on THE OTHER SIDE OF THE BOAT,and EXPECT a load of fish".

 

Linda Douty writes...." AUTHENTIC DOUBT IS THE CUTTING EDGE OF FAITH".

Do we check our brains at the church door?

 

 

Looking forward to YOUR thoughts!

 

Jerryb

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Jerry-

 

I don't think the parable you mentioned was so much a call to being radical, or thinking outside the box. The point for the fisherman was to recognize who was in the boat with them, and His power. That' why, upon seeing the display of power, Simon Peter fell down on his knees and said, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord."

 

He knew he was in the presence of awesome power.

Edited by darby
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darby,

But for sure there are multiple images/meanings here. For sure Peter goes to his knees and proclaims Jesus. And perhaps there is the idea that Jesus GOT the fish to bite. But why tell them to put their nets on the "other side". Why not just say, "Bite ye fish!" (or whatever is King Jamish), and they didth bite. He tells them to put their nets on the other side. They also eventually leave their regular ordinary lives.

 

What's the "real meaning"? Aren't they all there?

 

--des

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What's the "real meaning"? Aren't they all there?

 

Respectfully, I don't think so, des. Of course, this is probably where you and I would normally disagree. :)

 

Peter didn't respond about the revelation of casting on the other side, or thinking in a new way. He bowed down and worshipped the Lord. His response is crucial to the story

 

I spent some time this morning going back over some of the miracles attributed to Jesus. There seems to be a common theme--people are in awe, and they glorify God.

 

When the paralytic is healed, the people marveled and glorified God.

 

When Jesus healed the multitudes (Matt 15), "the multitude marveled when they saw the mute speaking, the maimed made whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they glorified the God of Israel."

 

When Jesus calmed the wind and the waves, the people asked "who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?"

 

When Jesus walked on the water, and rescued Peter, again, the people "worshipped Him, saying, 'Truly You are the Son of God'."

 

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that Jesus, and His power, seem to be the focus for the people when Jesus performed a miracle. Not a lesson about how to think. Not about "authentic doubt." Nor about what method He used--look at the different ways he gave sight to the blind.

 

I'm not saying every verse in the Bible is crystal clear, and that I completely understand it all. Nor that a verse can't say different things to different people.

But, conversely, I don't think every interpretation or meaning is valid either. I think it is important for all of us to attempt to "rightly divide" the Bible, as best we can--to be very careful as we use scripture to make points.

 

 

All that to say, I do agree with Jerry's premise that Jesus pushes us out of our comfort zones. And it can be quite uncomfortable, at times. :)

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But wasn't he trying to push those folks out of their "comfort zones". He didn't kick the money changers out of the temple to get the people to see God's power. What would be the point of that type of message from your description of Jesus' activities on Earth.

 

Besides getting them to bow to him, Jesus has these guys leaving their comfortable, normals lives. As I recall this incident was towards the beginning of the scripture.

 

Yes, I'll admit that I am not going to consider the means that Jesus takes for each healing (for ex. the mud in the eyes thing), but as I asked why not just tell the fishies to get abiting?

By asking them to move the net to the "other side", he's giving them the choice of the usual way or his new covenant way.

 

Though I guess we will end up agreeing to disagree on these things, at least the company is good. :-)

 

--des

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y asking them to move the net to the "other side", he's giving them the choice of the usual way or his new covenant way.

 

Wow! I love serendipity!

 

After Darby posted his reply to you Des, I googled the scripture to see what would come up. One web page listed all the different time "fishing" and "nets" showed up in the scriptures and what they were representative of.

 

It made mention of how the Kingdom of God is likened to a dragnet. POP! :o A little light went off in my brain that said: "Fishermen become fishers of men ... nets ... dragnets ... cast on the OTHER SIDE of the boat. Not this side, where you've been casting, but the OTHER SIDE. Could this mean the New Covenant?!" :blink:

 

The miracle of the catch proclaimed Jesus divinity. The method of the catch, I think, told a story too. B)

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Very neat Alethia. One thing about this board that I really like is that unless some verse in the Bible was used in a particularly vivid sermon (and I don't remember one on this one), I won't necessarily think about it too much.

 

This one really made me think though. If Jesus could turn water into wine, etc. why bother with such a really simple way of getting a better yield. Why NOT command the fishies to bite?? :-) I know I have said this, as a fishie fan I sort of like this whole idea. But he does this thing that is so rich with symbolism-- cast your nets on the other side. And all the stuff he says later of beign fishers of men, etc. Yep the new Covenant.

 

--des

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This thread, about Jesus pushing people out of their comfort zones, brings to mind an unusual sermon that I heard. The minister was preaching on the healing of the 10 lepers. As you may recall only one returned to thank Jesus for healing him.

 

The sermon did not deal with the leper who returned , but was rather a meditation and speculation on why each of the other nine did not return to thank Jesus. The pastor gave his ideas but one has stuck with me all these years. Perhaps, one of the lepers did not return because he was angry at Jesus for healing him. As crazy as that might sound, being a leper was his identity. Being in a community of lepers was his life and Jesus took that away from him by healing him.

 

 

I had never thought about that story in that manner before.

 

 

MOW

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Perhaps, one of the lepers did not return because he was angry at Jesus for healing him. As crazy as that might sound, being a leper was his identity. Being in a community of lepers was his life and Jesus took that away from him by healing him.

:lol::lol::lol::lol:

 

EX-LEPER:

Alms for an ex-leper. Bloody donkey owners. All the same, aren't they? Never have any change. Oh, here's a touch. Spare a talent for an old ex-leper.

 

MANDY:

Buzz off!

 

EX-LEPER:

Spare a talent for an old ex-leper.

 

MANDY:

A talent? That's more than he earns in a month.

 

EX-LEPER:

Half a talent, then.

 

MANDY:

No, go away!

 

EX-LEPER:

Come on, Big Nose. Let's haggle.

 

BRIAN:

What?

 

EX-LEPER:

All right. Cut the haggling. Say you open at one shekel. I start at two thousand. We close about eighteen hundred.

 

BRIAN:

No.

 

EX-LEPER:

Seventeen-fifty?

 

MANDY:

Go away!

 

EX-LEPER:

Seventeen-forty.

 

MANDY:

Look. Will you leave him alone?

 

EX-LEPER:

All right. Two shekels. Just two. Isn't this fun, eh?

 

MANDY:

Look. He's not giving you any money, so piss off!

 

EX-LEPER:

All right, sir. My final offer: half a shekel for an old ex-leper.

 

BRIAN:

Did you say... 'ex-leper'?

 

EX-LEPER:

That's right, sir. Sixteen years behind the bell, and proud of it, sir.

 

BRIAN:

Well, what happened?

 

EX-LEPER:

I was cured, sir.

 

BRIAN:

Cured?

 

EX-LEPER:

Yes, sir, a bloody miracle, sir. God bless you.

 

BRIAN:

Who cured you?

 

EX-LEPER:

Jesus did, sir. I was hopping along, minding my own business. All of a sudden, up he comes. Cures me. One minute I'm a leper with a trade, next minute my livelihood's gone. Not so much as a by your leave. 'You're cured mate.' Bloody do-gooder.

 

BRIAN:

Well, why don't you go and tell him you want to be a leper again?

 

EX-LEPER:

Ah, yeah. I could do that, sir. Yeah. Yeah, I could do that, I suppose. What I was thinking was, I was going to ask him if he could make me a bit lame in one leg during the middle of the week. You know, something beggable, but not leprosy, which is a pain in the arse, to be blunt. Excuse my French, sir, but, uh--

 

MANDY:

Brian! Come and clean your room out.

 

EX-LEPER:

Thank you, sir. Thanks-- Half a denary for me bloody life story?

 

BRIAN:

There's no pleasing some people.

 

EX-LEPER:

That's just what Jesus said, sir.

 

Life of Brian Script

Edited by AletheiaRivers
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I had never thought about that story in that manner before.

 

Perhaps the minister is/was a Monty Python fan? :lol:

 

I didn't mean to laugh at your anecdote MOW, but it was just so dang funny! It's one of my favorite scenes from the movie (along with the guord, the juniper bushes and "Yes, we're all individuals." :lol:

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All kidding aside, this is a REALLY good point. Our attachments do become our identities, even the ones that are destroying us.

 

My father-in-law died last year of liver failure, due to a lifetime of alcohol abuse. If you want to talk about "healing," God healed his soul by shutting down his body. It was probably the only time in his adult life that he was free of the drug long enough to be vulnerable, to see himself for who he really was -- and to really hear that despite the mistakes he made in his life, his family still loved him and always will. There has been so much healing in my wife's family throughout this process, which I don't think would have happened if he had been "saved" from the pain of being driven beyond his comfort zone, and died of something more quickly.

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I had never thought about that story in that manner before.

 

Perhaps the minister is/was a Monty Python fan? :lol:

 

I didn't mean to laugh at your anecdote MOW, but it was just so dang funny! It's one of my favorite scenes from the movie (along with the guord, the juniper bushes and "Yes, we're all individuals." :lol:

 

No problem Aletheia, I think that's what threads are for. I never saw "The Life of Brian", if I ever get around to getting a DVD player perhaps I will.

 

It's just that it had been suggested that the miracles were for the purpose of getting people to glorify God. I 'm just not so sure about that. It would have been interesting to check up on these people a week or a month later. None of these people who were healed , fed , had their sight restored, or raised from the dead

showed up when Jesus was alone in the Garden of Gethsemene.

 

Comfort zones are strange things. A Non-denominational church meets in a community center where I work. Over several weeks they had collected a large sum of money to give to a homeless man who lived in the park next to the building. They even managed to get an apartment for him in Indiana. Well lo and behold a few weeks later, he was back in the park again. He didn't like Indiana and besides all his friends were here . I'm not making light of homelessness but sometimes there's more to it than meets the eye.

 

 

MOW

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All kidding aside, this is a REALLY good point.  Our attachments do become our identities, even the ones that are destroying us.

 

 

 

I believe that this all illustrates that "change" is the operative factor in all of this. While human beings are a part of nature, they, and we, have been operating for millenia in ways to cushion our individual and collective lives from suffering the spectrum of detrimental change that nature brings to us.

 

All of our modern conveniences that turn into necessities overnight fall into this category. Shelter, power and information systems, highways and roads, educational facilities, medical and long term care capabilities, all of it and more are subject to destruction by nature and human-made events without engineering, planning, construction, and maintenance capabilities.

 

 

But our ever increasing efforts to prevent or at least delay significant change in our lives creates a price for us to pay. I call it "the sky is falling syndrome". This stems from the known fact that complex systems, such as civilization has constructed around us, especially in urban areas, become increasingly vulnerable to significant collapse if natural and man-made disasters crop up.

 

The gulf coast storms are an excellent example of this. And in light of the fact that certain experts are now saying that it may take ten years for full recovery to take place, one can see how significant just several hours of natural violence can be to a portion of our civilized structures, and just how much it affects the rest of the whole in significant ways. As I said elsewhere here after the storms, I believe that we're being sent messages, but our leaders tend to ignore them until after the bad stuff happens and they are forced to deal with it all.

 

I believe that the example of the healed leper, and the moving of the net from one side of the boat to the other was Jesus' way of saying that human-made change can and does change reality in the future, but one must be prepared for a range of unexpected benefits and penalties due to such change.

 

Since we have free will, individually and collectively, we can and do delay needed and significant change until we are perhaps forced into it due to urgent circumstances. Whereas it is very comfortable for us to continue our identities as comfortable and well-fed urban creatures, what happens if in the future our highly effecient systems to find and process seafood catches become too effecient and the seafood systems themselves start to collapse, as happened with the cod population in the Atlantic, and as is now happening with other species.

 

We were given intellectual gifts to help us to effect change in our environments to help make our quality of life better, up to a point. But if we enjoy the benefits for too long and ignore needed curbs and modifications that help to insure sustainability, what kind of a situation is our use of change setting up for our childrens' futures?

 

Just thinking out loud again.

 

flow.... :unsure:

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