DOES GOD JUDGE ME . . . OR DOES HE LOVE ME?

I was raised a “Christian” with certain values, beliefs . . . and an arrogant and judgmental mindset.  Not consciously.  I don’t believe my parents, teachers, or most of the members of my religion intended to be arrogant and judgmental hypocrites.  We did not know better.

As I reflect back, it seems silly that I was unable to recognize that I thought my religion was the exclusive keeper of “The Real Truth,” and – by the exercise of simple logic – that everyone else must  possess less of the truth (or perhaps none at all).  No one in my religion ever explicitly said that.  Perhaps like me, they never really thought about it in those terms.

How Does God Feel About Me?

How Does God Feel About Me?

It seems so obvious now. I don’t know how I missed the realization that a Loving and Just God would not, and could not, “Save” some tiny fraction of Earth’s population and damn the rest of the people who ever lived on Earth.

People He Created.  People He Loves!

And why?  Because they didn’t join (or, in many cases, ever even hear about) His preferred religion.  So they fail.  They don’t receive an “A” in Life.  So God sentences all of them to eternal damnation.

Hellfire for the losers.

Even scarier is the fact that most religions teach that “The Losers” in the Game of Salvation includes the members of every other religion.

So the reward from a Loving God for everybody who is sincerely seeking Him, but chooses one of the hundreds of ‘fake’ religions instead of ‘His Preferred Religion’?

GO TO HELL!

DO NOT PASS HEAVEN.  DO NOT COLLECT $200.

No “Get Out of Hell Free” Cards.

Just Hell for the humans He claims to Love so much.

Heaven’s public relations staff doesn’t even spin it as “A very long, all-expenses paid vacation to a tropical destination ‘down under’!”

Nope.

Just Hell.

Not even a half-hearted, “Sorry, Losers, but we have some excellent consolation prizes for you backstage.”

Just eternal separation from God.

WHAT?!?! 

Courage is Not the Lack of Fear but Moving Forward in the Face of Fear in Love, Truth, Joy, and with Respect.

Fear is the opposite of Love (See, e.g., 1 John 4.18)

That doesn’t sound like LoveIt actually sounds like the opposite of Love — Fear.

Either the Apostle John had a pretty jacked-up vision of what “Love” looks like.  Or Beloved Johnny was having a brain seizure when he penned … well, almost every single thing  he ever wrote.

But wait a minute…

Is there, perhaps, another possible explanation?

Just perhaps, the problem is not on God’s end.  Perhaps I have it wrong.  Perhaps I have attributed God with possessing an emotion and employing a tactic that He is incapable of being or using.  In fact, now that I think about it — I don’t believe God ever employs ‘fear’ as a motivational tool or a strategy to win souls.  He is God, after all.  If He wanted to ensure victory, He could have just designed every one of us sans Freedom of Choice.

No, upon reflection, I think ‘fear’ is the prime and exclusive operational tactic employed by those who wish to deceive us.  Not those who Love us.

Perhaps Big John’s moniker, “The Beloved” was indeed deserved.  And perhaps three of the Youngest Disciple’s words are actually three of the most important words to be found in the Bible:

God is Love.

God is Love.

God IS Love.

GOD is Love.

God is LOVE.

God = Love.

It really is not crucial where you place the emphasis in the above sentences.

What matters is the emphasis you place on the thought it conveys.

A more crucial concept does not exist.

Believing and accepting the proposition that God is Love will change the emphasis you place on the meaning to just about everything you read in scripture; it has the power to change the very essence of the way you relate to God; it can and will change the way you relate to your friends, co-workers, members of other religions, atheists . . . and your enemies.

Embracing those three words will exponentially increase the Joy you experience in your House of Worship.

Ultimately, the proposition contained in those three words has the power to transform an aimless and hopeless Life of fear and depression . . .

Into a Life of Meaning.

A Fulfilling Life.

A Life of Abundance.

I am living proof of that fact.

 

A Life of Abundance

The Abundant Life, the Life Jesus came here to give us, the Life Jesus is Dying for us to accept; that Life begins the instant we initially embrace those three words.

I suspect that we will spend all of eternity learning to fully comprehend the depth, and the breadth, and the beauty, and the Truth, and the Joy expressed in those nine letters.

And one little eternity may not be nearly long enough.

But it all begins with deciding if we believe those three words.

God is Love!

God is Love!

For me, that journey started when I considered that my Mom would Love me every speck as much as she does now if I announced I was converting to a new religion.

Every speck as much.

I know, without question, that my Mom Loves me the same when I do every single thing she expects me to do . . . and when I screw up in the most public, offensive, and despicable ways possible.

Every speck as much.

Her Love does not wane when I ‘transgress her rules.’  It is not diminished when I refuse to follow “her will” for my Life and elect to do what I want with my Life.  Her Love for me would not even be affected if I chose to call some other woman “My Mom” and refused to acknowledge her as Mom.

She would still Love me every speck as much.

Even if I chose to become a mass-murderer and serial rapist, her Love for me would not falter.  I seriously doubt my Mother’s Love is capable of faltering.

She created me.  So Mom Loves me.

She created me.  So Mom Loves me.

Why would I think any less of the Love my Heavenly “Father” has for me?!?!

Let me say that again:  Why would I think that the Dude that Self-styled Himself as “my heavenly Father” would (or could) Love me any less than my Mom?!?!?

HE IS LOVE!

He created me.  So He Loves me.

That is clearly what the Apostle Paul had in mind when he summed up everything he felt was important in being a Christian in a single sentence (notice the word ‘ONLY’ chosen by the man who wrote most of the New Testament):

“The ONLY thing that matters is Faith, which is expressed by the Way we Love.” (Galatians 6.5)

“The ONLY thing that matters is Faith, which is expressed by the Way we Love.” (Galatians 6.5)

Perhaps that is why in the most circulated book and the most popular musical group in history, John and Paul proclaim the same timeless message of Joy and Truth:

“All you need is Love.

Whether it’s the Apostles…or the Beatles… John and Paul got it right:

“All you need is Love.

“All you need is Love.”

From my heart to yours,

 

Scotty b.

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About Scotty b.

J. Scot Blackburn is a California attorney. His friends call him 'Scotty b.' Scot graduated from Pepperdine Law School after earning business degree from Pacific Union College in the Napa Valley. Scot runs his own law practice, The Blackburn Law Firm at www.HelpWithMyCase.com. Scotty's interests including reading, football, interpersonal communications, cooking, military history, travelling, golf, and telling near-senseless jokes that only he finds amusing. Scotty's hero is his Grandad, C.C. Blackburn. His favorite movies are The Scarlet Pimpernel, A Few Good Men and The Matrix. His favorite athletes are Roger Staubach, Magic Johnson and Michael "Playmaker" Irvin. Scot's favorite musician is Sebastian Bach (not the German Baroque period composer who shares Scot's initials; but the former Skid Row front man). Scotty created a Board Games Magazine Top 100 Game ("Brain Chain") along with teacher Kris Harter, attorney Alicia Vaz, and graphic designer Roy Ice.

Posted on January 4, 2015, in Judgment, Love and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

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