Wednesday, December 24, 2014

I was quoted in a book

I was quoted as one of 23 identified "modern grace teachers" in Michael L. Brown's book Hyper-Grace: Exposing the Dangers of the Modern Grace Message released January 2014. I found out about this over Thanksgiving & yes I am very thankful for it. I still stand by the 3 quotes of mine that he quotes (originally from my post "Hyper-Grace" is True!, February 19, 2013). I feel like God allowed 3 short megaton bombs of truth in a book that speaks against the fullness of God's grace.

Here I am being addressed on page 229 (footnotes included).

I said, "God is not blind to how the deeds of my flesh affect myself & others." After quoting this he then claims my concept carries the idea of, "God, You know that wasn't really me. It was just my flesh!" So I would like to be clearer.

Scripture teaches SELF-control. If our selves were bad, wretched, evil, or even our flesh God would not have told us to have self-control. Our selves, as the scriptures I cited above teach, are our spirits. Ephesians 4:24 says that our new self/man/creation/spirit has been created in God’s image & is truly righteous and holy. SELF-control is SPIRIT-control. Our spirits take responsibility for our flesh's actions.

In my post, Our New Creation in Christ & sin from October 4, 2012 I wrote,
The love of the spirit, through renewed parts of the mind, takes responsibility for the unloving actions caused by the flesh & makes amends with the parties harmed.

Our spiritual identity in Christ isn't a false excuse to "get off the hook" for how we behave. It is our reborn identity perfectly loved by God that, given the opportunity, flows out only good things. It is our true self, our eternal self. It is not self-centered nor does it make excuses for the flesh's behavior. It is one spirit with God (1 Corinthians 6:17 & Ephesians 4:4). It is God living in us, & with us, & through us. I will accept nothing less than the identity I know I was born into by the Spirit of God. I am not a sinner. I am perfected forever. I am perfect as my Father in heaven is perfect. I am one with God because He wanted to love me & I let Him. The fact that nothing can separate you from His love means you are already in His love. Absolutely nothing ever stands between you & His love. Trust Him & let Him love you as He wants to love you.
I noticed that Mr. Brown said it was a "dangerous concept" to separate your actions from your identity. Which to me pictures God putting us "on the hook" when we misbehave. But that is not our Father. No good father is "dangerous" to his children. God is not looking to accuse us. Satan is the accuser, not our Father. If we feel like we even want to make excuses for something we've done we aren't understanding our Father & His love for us. Why would you want to pass the buck or make excuses or weasel out of something unless you fear punishment or abandonment or shame?

So I wasn't saying "here's my excuse to not take responsibility for how I treat myself & others." I'm really not sure why that is the conclusion that so many jump to. But I am also not on board with the idea of a Father we'd want to make excuses to being our true heavenly Father. If we have any trepidations regarding relating to God we are believing a lie about Him. Our true Father, in His perfect love, is never someone we'd want to avoid, His perfect love for us never inspires fear.

If you feel like it you can check out the book The Hyper-Grace Gospel: A Response to Michael Brown and Those Opposed to the Modern Grace Message by Paul Ellis.