Saturday, March 22, 2014

What Holds Back Reconciliation?

We want everyone to come with us as we follow Yeshua in all His purposes that are being summed up beginning in our days, but the truth is not everyone is going to submit to many of the things that God is accomplishing through Messiah. Here are some of those things in my understanding.

First and foremost is our personal and corporate transformation in the likeness of Yeshua/Jesus. It is the Alpha and Omega of God's purpose in Messiah. If we do not yield our flawed human nature to His cross and allow the nature of Yeshua to be formed in us as is God's desire for us, then nothing else He desires for us can come to completion/maturation either.

Secondly, I believe that the issue of horizontal forgiveness (between God and us) is not completed or mature until we get hold of the necessity of walking in parallel forgiveness (between us and others). The truth of Matthew 18 where failure to forgive becomes a prison of torments to the unforgiving BELIEVER, is not a somewhat important issue, it is a critical issue. We cannot become spiritually healthy individuals without this key understanding of God's demand on us, and we certainly cannot resolve ANY of the breakdowns between different factions in the Church/Body.

Thirdly, the previous two issues are imperative to resolution in the divide that surrounds Israel and the Church, Messianic Jews and Palestinian Arab Christians, Christian Zionists and Pro-Palestinianists, Christian lovers of Israel and Christian deniers of Israel.

I dare say, that in each and every faction mentioned there is refusal of forgiveness that the factions are tripping over.

I'm not talking about some kind of Mooney fake-smile forgiveness, but the transformational Jesus-kind that takes wounds to the Cross and engages the ministry of reconciliation that we have been sent as ambassadors into the world to be.

I'm also not talking about some kind of doormat reconciliation where we expect everything of ourselves and nothing of the other person. Jesus did not let the villagers in Nazareth throw him off of the cliff when they were incensed with the truth He was bringing them. He walked right through the tumult and chaos and continued on His way with His ordained mission.

Those who are going on with God's plan for them have to drink of the cup that Yeshua drank from, and be baptized with the baptism He endured. (Mt 20:23). If you look at this passage in context is was two disciples wanting to be exalted to sit on the throne on either side of Him and all the other disciples mad at their personal ambition. So dealing with two factions, Yeshua told them they would have to drink from the cup He would drink of -
death on the cross - and be baptized with the baptism He endured - the baptism by fire, which speaks to me of the fury of opposition and accusation He endured on His way to lay down His life to the purposes of God.

When we take up our cross to follow Him, we have to learn the significance of releasing forgiveness to reaching His highest. If we do not come out of the baptism of fire - walking through the opposition and accusations against us as we are walking out God's purposes for us - then we cannot complete the fulness of God's heart for us personally and individually.

As Dan Juster wisely observed when he recently addressed a gathering of Palestinian Christian Arabs and their supporters from the international Church, we cannot build a theology on our woundedness - not Palestinians and not Jews either. The wounds cause us not to be able to see with God's eyes. Only when we take them to the Cross and allow forgiveness to transform us can we have the clear eyes to see the heart of God.

Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8

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