Thursday, July 30, 2015

Five Reasons 'Sinners' Enter the Kingdom of God Ahead of Christians - Steve Hackman


Jesus knew how to tick off religious folk.  Imagine for a moment going into a modern day Christian conference.  You know, one of those shiny camp meetings advertised in a flashy Christian magazine or the like. In the midst of all the powerful teaching, anointed worship, and prophetic proclamations you walk down to meet with the pastors and church leaders only to give them a message that the homosexuals, foreigners, and non-Christians were entering the Kingdom of Heaven before they were.

Ka-boom!

One would probably find themselves crucified (if today, thankfully, only figuratively)
But thats exactly what Jesus did in Matthew Ch. 21.  He enters the temple courts and starts talking with the senior religious leaders there.  He tells them this parable:
“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’
“ ‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.
“Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go.
“Which of the two did what his father wanted?”
“The first,” they answered.  (Matthew 21: 28-31)
See, common sense told them the right answer.  But in the religious leaders real faith they instead prefer the man who says the right thing despite ignoring the father’s intent over the one who does God’s will but does it outside the proper framework or with the right words…so to speak.

Then Jesus drops the bomb on them just so there is NO misunderstanding:
Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.
Can you imagine?  Jesus wasn’t just trying to make a point in order to get the pastors and elders to “up there game” so to speak.  He was actually telling them that people who sold their bodies for sex as well as their fellow countrymen that were working against Jewish nationalism to collaborate with the Roman imperialists were actually understanding, seeing, and entering the Kingdom of God ahead of the morally pure church leaders.

Huh??

So, with Jesus’ words in mind here are 5 reasons I believe “sinners” are often out in front of Christians when it comes to entering the Kingdom of God.

CLICK HERE to see more

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The Greatest Commandment - Laura Urista

I've always liked to watch detective shows. Growing up, two of my favorite detective shows were Columbo and Dragnet. Remember Sergeant Joe Friday of Dragnet? Sometimes when Sergeant Friday would interview a witness they'd get a little long winded or off topic. Sometimes they would give their own ideas about how to solve the crime. When that happened, Sergeant Friday would say in a very calm, monotone, no-nonsense voice: “Just the facts…just the facts.” In fact, that quote became such a popular catch-phrase or slogan that they started to sell T-shirts with the slogan “Just the Facts.”

In Matthew we read about a Pharisee, described as “an expert in the law,” who asked Jesus what we might call a “Joe Friday—just-the-facts” kind of question.
Matthew 22: 34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[ Deut. 6:5] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[Lev. 19:18] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” 
Looking back now, from our 21stcentury vantage point, we understand that when Jesus refers here to “all the law and the Prophets” he was describing the Scripture or Bible known to the Jews of that day…kind of like saying from “A to Z.” Because of course the New Testament was not written yet. SO Jesus’ answer boils down the entire Bible known to the people of that day to just two points.

Two points with a common theme: The great command to love—and not just any kind of love—Godly love.

Home Alone

For those of you who are parents, have you ever left your kid “home alone”?  I don’t mean on accident, like what happened to Kevin McCalister in the movie, but when they were old enough and mature enough to be left home overnight or for a weekend. Maybe in their mid or late teens. I remember the first time we left our son and daughter home alone while my husband, Juan, and I went away for a weekend. I made a list of the most important things they needed to know while we were away. Besides the phone numbers of where we were staying, or neighbors & friends phone numbers, I listed things like where our important papers were located and what to do just in case something happened to us.

The book of John chapter 13 records what I find an interesting statement by Jesus about what he wanted his disciples to know before he left them physically.

In John 13:33-35 Jesus said to his disciples:
33 “Little children, I shall be with you a little while longer…
34 A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” 
      Jesus said these words during the middle of the Passover service, right after Judas had departed. He had just performed the foot-washing and passed the bread and the cup instituting a new way of keeping Passover – which we now know as the Lord’s Supper or Eucharist. Here was Jesus knowing that in just a few hours he’d be facing a terrible beating, and the most humiliating and an excruciatingly slow, painful death.  So what did Jesus feel compelled to tell his disciples at that particular time? What was the crucial, important thing—the NEW commandment he wanted them to remember?  What was the SIGN he gave so everyone would recognize his followers and disciples?



Thursday, July 23, 2015

The "More Beautiful Gospel" Conference - Register Now

The Beautiful Gospel Conference​ official web page is complete and registration has just gone live. Join Brian Zahnd, Brad Jersak, Brian Doerksen and the Shiyr Poets

Oct. 1-3 in Abbotsford. 
Catch the early-bird price if you can. 




The Not-Yet Kingdom - Greg Albrecht


"The Not Yet Kingdom" The kingdom of God is the reign of God. The kingdom of God is not physically located. It is not located in a fortress, like an old castle in Europe—protected by high walls, a moat and a drawbridge. The kingdom of God is not in heaven—it is from heaven.
He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: "A voice of one calling in the wilderness, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all people will see God's salvation.'"—Luke 3:3-6
As John the Baptist preached he quoted from the prophecy in Isaiah, which spoke both of his own ministry preparing for Jesus' ministry and Jesus' central message—the kingdom of God. Isaiah tells us (reiterated by John the Baptist) that the kingdom of God is incredibly good news because God's kingdom overturns the ways of this world. The kingdom of God turns the kingdom of religion upside down. Valleys are filled in, mountains are made flat, crooked places are made straight and the rough ways become smooth. 

This passage, of course, is not a literal description of how the kingdom of God changes the topography of the world—it's not a literal description of kingdom of God road building and highway projects. Rather, the sweeping grandeur of terms like every valley being filled in, every mountain and hill being made low, the crooked roads being made straight and rough ways smooth are inspiring and majestic metaphors describing: 

• the end of poverty,
• injustice being made right and satisfied,
• warfare becoming peace,
• corruption being purified,
• pollution being cleansed,
• suffering being healed,
• slaves becoming free,
• sickness and disease healed.

This grand promise is a portrait of the end of favoritism and partisan politics, of back room deals and of human beings suffering under the heavy hand of government and religious authorities. The kingdom of God will, among other things, overthrow and eliminate Christ-less religion as we know it, experience it and endure it.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Gospel in Chairs (2015) - Brad Jersak

Who is the Accuser? God or Satan? - Josh Felts

Who is the one reminding us of our sin, pointing fingers, and accusing us? Is it God or is it Satan? I believe this is a question we must ask. It will determine how we live in response to God and in response to humanity. 

If we believe God is the one accusing us and holding our sins against us two things will happen naturally: 1.) We will live in fear when we mess up because we know God is going to be disappointed with us and He will point out everything we did wrong. 2.) We will become the accuser of humanity because we always mimic the God we believe in. 

Here are a few passages that will help us out with this question. 

"For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.” - Hebrews 8:12 

"And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” - Hebrews 10:17 

"I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” - Isaiah 43:25 

“God was in Christ personally reconciling the world to himself—not counting their sins against them—and has commissioned us with the message of reconciliation.” - 2 Corinthians 5:19

“For the accuser of our brethren (Satan) has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night. - Revelation 12:10 (Many will argue that the word “brethren” means Christians brothers but that is not the case. The word in the original language means all men!) 

The Apostle Paul shared a truth that will certainly help us understand the way God sees us, “But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and FREE FROM ACCUSATION.” (See Colossians 1:22) At the cross Jesus completely defeated the enemy and made a public spectacle of the one who accuses us. (See Colossians 2:15) 

There is only one accuser of mankind who holds our sins against us and it is satan, not Jesus. When we align ourselves with the voice of the accuser, whether against ourselves or others, we have taken the role of satan and we have rejected following the way of Jesus.  

We see this truth beautifully revealed when the woman was caught in adultery in the Gospel of John. They brought this woman in front of Jesus accusing her and Jesus said, "Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her."

Slowly, they all left and Jesus said to her, "Where are your accusers? Didn't even one of them condemn you?" “No, Lord,” she said. And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” (See John 8:1-11) The only one who was without sin that had the ability to accuse her or condemn her (Jesus), chose not to because God is not like that.

God is Love and Love keeps no record of wrong. We can be confident in knowing God is not holding our sins against us, pointing fingers at us, or accusing us. He is 100% in love with us, 100% pleased with us, and 100% for us and we can do nothing to change it.

Never forget, satan accuses you, but God refuses to! 

Be encouraged, 

Josh Felts

The Key to Unlocking the Bible - Caleb Miller

Taken at face value, the Bible is a terrifying, unbelievable book. Complete with dragons, floods, plagues, violence of every sort, rape, infanticide, genocide, homicide, social discrimination, theft, adultery and much much more, the text approaches us much more like a series of epic tales rather than a single piece of literature. 
Some stories are retold, the latter even disagreeing with the former in some respects (the book of Judges employs this tactic). Others are told in such grandiose fashion, we immediately conjure up images of so-called "demon spawn", the offspring of fallen angels and people (a group Jesus says is "without sex"). All of this adds up to one thing, and specifically when we're talking about how we interpret the Bible (hermeneutics). 
The more common interpretational guidelines take one of two approaches:
  • Strict literal - everything is written "as it happened, when it happened". The phrase "God said it, I believe it, that settles it" refers to this model of interpretation. 
  • Open - the Bible, like all ancient "historical" documents, contains not only a theological but a political agenda. 
For the first, I can only assume that those who hold to the more strict form of literalism don't understand the nature of the text, or the one who inspired it. What I want to address today is toward those of us who've gotten comfortable enough with Jesus to allow the text to be interpreted a little more appropriately for the One who is revealed best as "love". Many have let go of the notion that an imperfect text = shaken faith, and those who still hold to it are, sadly, holding to faith in the text rather than faith in the One it intends to describe (however unsuccessfully). 
But there is a third way I propose we read the text. Again, we can't get caught up in the notion that a collection of books spanning thousands of years somehow mystically, magically has no contradiction on its pages. What we have to do is deal with those contradictions. 
But how?
With Jesus. Jesus is the "key" to the scriptures and how to interpret them. And I don't mean that we need to sit and wait for him to start talking audibly from heaven, or magically redacting pages for us. I mean with him. 
Jesus interprets the text for us often, but too often, we fail to see where he's gone.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Is It Possible To Be … Spiritual But Not Religious? Greg Albrecht and Brad Jersak


GREG: Is it possible to be … Spiritual But Not Religious? 

I’ve previously addressed this topic in sermons and we’ve touched on it in shorter articles as well. But the question is huge because it goes to the morphing of what it means to be church and do church

Typical 'spirituality surveys' demonstrate that many North Americans believe one can be spiritual without necessarily being religious. Of course, definitions of both words must be considered when this question is pondered. Does ‘spiritual’ refer only to one’s own inner life, or does it acknowledge a spiritual world (including a God) beyond the human soul? Does ‘religion’ refer only to faith practices, or does it inherently include the ritualism, legalism, self-righteousness, etc.?  

The objections of formal religious structures that are in business to provide a religious experience must be considered. Typically and primarily, of course, the objection is that spirituality is too broad and wide and may allow people to presume that they know God when they really have no idea.   

Of course, the flip side of that objection must be examined – can one be religious but miss the boat when it comes to having an authentic spiritual relationship with God? Can one think they had a spiritual experience just because they drove to a religious outlet and sat there for a while? 

To be fair, spirituality is not an automatic experience and benefit enjoyed by those who avoid brick and mortar buildings and ceremonies. Many others would point out that “spirituality” might allow for Eastern thought, to the exclusion of Jesus, and be considered on equal footing with Christ-centered faith.  

BRAD:

Yes, one angle that interests me is how many who claim to move from religion to ​spirituality actually make one of two other ill-advised moves.

1. They move from Christless religion to Christless spirituality, which in the end becomes utterly vague and vacuous. Thus, ‘spirituality’ is reduced to personal experiences of the sublime, or worse, the nourishment of one’s ego through the endless pursuit of the next ‘liver-shiver’; or  …

2. They move from Christless Christianity to Christless religion (e.g. now I'm 'spiritual' because I'm a pop-Buddhist, for example) ... If other faiths are taken seriously, rather than reducing them to the latest celebrity trend, we see how they too require belief in their own set of dogmas and practice in a new forum for religious hoop-jumping.

In other words, I think this new era of spirituality in the West is shifting again very quickly and our response needs to shift with it. The previous era assumed religion was good. Now it assumes religion is bad. What are the implications for ministries like CWR? Here are a few:

a. Might we help Evangelicals assess whether they are still subtly but badly bound up in religion in post-modern ways? Many think they've freed themselves from religion just by wearing torn blue jeans incorporating clanging cymbals in their worship. Some of the most religious expressions of the church are now quite spontaneous and dude-looking ... fundamentalism with smoke-machines. In other words, we need to clarify that one does not escape religion just by becoming less formal if we are still moralistic, legalistic and judgmental.

b. Might we help ex-Church-goers to understand that Christianity still offers a healthy anchor and maintains a core content: namely, the Jesus Way. Any spirituality that ditches Jesus along with religion is no longer Christianity. In fact, doesn’t it just open itself up to whatever or whoever will step into that vacuum? A Christless spirituality seems to be as vulnerable to hucksters and as prone to spiritual abuse as Christless religion ever was. That is, the move from religious hierarchy to spiritual anarchy carries it’s own real risks.

c. Might we acknowledge that not all 'faith practices' should be jettisoned as 'Christless religion'? For example, the practices of prayer, Bible-reading and Christ-centered worship doesn't automatically make one 'religious' in the bad way. It seems to me the issue is how we frame these practices: certainly the most prayerful people aren’t always the most ‘religious’ … nor does avoiding church gatherings always make one less ‘religious’ or more ‘spiritual.’

I suppose the litmus test across the board is whether one’s ‘religion’ or ‘spirituality’ is Christless or Christ-centered; self-based or grace-based; law-driven or love-lifted. In this way, we can discern between Christless religion, vacuous spirituality and the living faith of the Jesus Way.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Twenty Books Everyone Should Read - Wm. Paul Young

CWR Editor's Note: CWR was pleased to see that Wm. Paul Young (author of The Shack and Cross-Roads) included Her Gates Will Never Be Shut by our senior editor, Bradley Jersak, in his list of most recommended books. Beyond that, he's also included 8 categories of 20 must-reads to pass along. Originally posted at http://wmpaulyoung.com/twenty-books-everyone-should-read/
 
I love great stories and great writers, I put together a list of a few of books I think you'll find worth your time. Some of them are deep, intellectual reads on philosophy and theology, some of them are bright, engrossing novels, so whatever  type of book you're most interested in, you should be able to find here:

A while back, as the Featured Religion Author for Barnes&Noble.com, my assignment was to share eight of my favorite books about religion.  I am going to cheat while I have the opportunity.

Below I have eight categories of books, and all of them will have at least two titles. There are twenty books in all.  I have also given each book a score between one and ten regarding how arduous a read: one = Dr. Seuss easy and ten = you need a dictionary and lots of time.

1.     C.S. Lewis – He has a category all by himself.  The Weight of Glory (7), is a stunning compilation of addresses given by Lewis in the 1940s and 1950s spanning a breadth of topics and issues that continue to be relevant today, especially the titled address, one of the most beautiful in history.  Also, The Great Divorce (5) (Fiction) and Perelandra (5), (Science Fiction) are well worth the time spent.

2.     20th Century ProphetsChrist and the Media, (7), by Malcolm Muggeridge and almost anything by Jacques Ellul, such as Anarchy and Christianity (7), The Humiliation of the Word (9), The Politics of God and the Politics of Man (6) and Money and Power (7). Both of these men had a profound understanding of modern technological society and stood with clear prophetic presence.  Reading them is like wading through wet concrete, but finding diamonds everywhere.

3.     I Need Some Help Here – I picked two books that are speaking into current issues in life-giving ways.  Love is an Orientation, (5), by Andrew Marin, is the single best book I have ever read on spirituality and the LGBT community; it’s a must read!  Christa Black’s, God Loves Ugly, (4), whether pre-adolescent or adult, this book assists women and those who care for them in facing and working through questions of body image, eating disorders and self-destructive thinking and behaviors that enslave so many.

4.     Paradigm BustersThe Shack Revisted, (6), by Dr. C Baxter Kruger, Mississippi theologian and storyteller, is beautiful and brilliant.  The byline is: “There is more going on here than you ever dared to dream.”  An influence on C.S. Lewis, G.K Chesterton, Madeleine L’Engle, J.R.R Tolkien, Oswald Chambers, Mark Twain and others is George MacDonald, Scottish literary genius.  Besides his novels, The Princess and the Goblin, Sir Gibbie etc., I highly recommend Unspoken Sermons: Christ in Creation (7).

5.     On Second Thought – My suggestions in this category are two creative and thought producing and provoking books:  The Yellow Leaves, (5) by Frederick Buechner, master story-teller and weaver of meaning, and The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought, (7), by Marilynne Robinson, a stunning collection of essays by a word-craftsperson.

6.     Conversations – There are two recent books that invite us into a wider conversation between faith cultures in which the authors work to maintain both orthodoxy and openness.  Brian D. McLaren’s, Why did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road? (6), and Dr. Paul Louis Metzger’s, Connecting Christ: How to Discuss Jesus in a World of Diverse Paths (6). Read both of them.

7.     Heaven and Hell Category – Two gifted and grace-full writers I bring to your attention in another conversation that is ‘finally’ getting larger play and focus.  Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church (6), by N.T. Wright, and Her Gates will Never be Shut: Hope, Hell, and the New Jerusalem (6) by Bradley Jersak.

8.     Leave me Alone so I can Think About this Awhile – Sometimes you simply need to let a writer visit and share a cup of tea and wander into some of the precious places of the heart without asking for permission. Two such guests are Jean Vanier, Drawn into the Mystery of Jesus through the Gospel of John, (5) and Henri Nouwen, The Wounded Healer, (5).  You could always add a little Thomas Merton, Brennan Manning and Richard Rohr to the mix too, for colors of longing and mystery.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The End of the 'But' Message - Josh Felts

The “BUT message” is extremely popular in evangelical Christianity. This message is at the core of many sermons and is shouted from pulpits all across the world every week. I believe it is time we address it.  

I am sure you have heard statements such as: 
  • God loves you BUT
  • God has grace for you BUT
  • God is merciful BUT
  • God is for you and not against you BUT
  • He will never leave you nor forsake you BUT
  • Jesus finished the work on the cross once and for all BUT 

I believe we have forgotten what comes out of butts and I think we all know what I am talking about… Can we please stop taking a dump on the beautiful reality of the Gospel and the finished work of the cross?

While the "BUT message" may be popular, it is certainly not the Gospel. Next time you hear someone share a beautiful Gospel truth then follow their statement with “BUT” and a list of what you must do to obtain it, just remember what comes out of butts. May we never forget, the Gospel is a scandal and all buts must be left out. 

At the core of this “but message” is the very essence of religion; it is all about what you can do for God. Thankfully, the Gospel is about what He did for us. When we add conditions based on our response, works, or efforts to obtain it, it is no longer grace… That is the law. Grace is completely unearned, undeserved, and quite frankly, not fair. It is very evident many people love placing conditions on the love and grace of God. However, it is time that we all be reminded that His love and grace is unconditional. 

Humanity, you can be confident in knowing:
  • God loves you... PERIOD
  • Gods grace is for you... PERIOD
  • God is merciful… PERIOD
  • God is for you and not against you... PERIOD 
  • He will never leave you nor forsake you... PERIOD 
  • Jesus finished the work on the cross once and for all... PERIOD 
  • The Gospel is not a message of what can be true if you respond to it properly; 
  • The Gospel is a declaration of what is true... PERIOD! 

Be encouraged,
Josh Felts

This post was originally posted at:

The Judgement of the Cross - Rob Grayson

“Now is the judgement of this world; now the ruler of this world will be driven out.” (John 12:31)
Christians are generally accustomed to speaking of the cross as the place and time where God enacted judgement on the world. But what does this actually mean, and what are its implications?
Usually, the cross as the place of judgement is understood to mean the physical location where God poured out his wrath upon Jesus. Here, wrath is understood as the punishment for our sin which God, in his justice, is obliged to mete out: namely death. And Jesus, the sinless Lamb of God, gamely hangs on the cross in our place and bears the brunt of God’s implacable justice so that we, in spite of our sin, can escape punishment.
And the cross as the time of judgement is understood as the point in history when God sovereignly intervened in human affairs to solve humanity’s sin problem as described above.
So there we have it: time and place come together at the cross as Jesus bears God’s punishment for our sin. This, then, is the judgement of the cross: a resounding verdict of “Guilty!” pronounced upon the human race by God, accompanied by an unappealable death sentence. The twist is that Christ comes in as an innocent victim to serve the sentence in our place.
This is what I believed without a second thought for most of my Christian life. Until I began, through a process of reading and thinking, to see some gaping holes in it:
Hole number 1: In this view, God is not free to simply forgive sin; he is beholden to a higher principle of justice that must be obeyed. This is a major philosophical and theological problem, because if God is God, there clearly cannot be any higher principle than himself by which he is bound.
Hole number 2: Following on from hole number 1, since God is bound by a higher principle of justice that must be satisfied, the only way he can forgive us is through some kind of transaction. His end of the transaction is that someone has to die, since the wages of sin is death. Jesus agrees to be that someone, so God can now forgive us because his perfect son has died in our place, thus balancing the scales of justice. The problem here is that this is supposedly the same God who elsewhere in scripture instructs us to freely forgive others, even as we have been forgiven. So God requires a different standard of his children – free forgiveness – than he himself is prepared to meet. Hmm.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The Law was Given Through Moses – Grace and Truth Come Through Jesus Christ - by Greg Albrecht

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. —John 1:17
Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away. But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.  
Therefore, since through God's mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God. —2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2
Here's a news flash! Religion is confrontational and hostile to anyone that dares to differ with it. Religion is, at best, irrelevant to our relationship with God. Christ-less religion actually leads people away from God! 

Grace-less religion advances its agenda, which is all about the relationship it offers (or inflicts upon) its followers. The relationship religion offers usually includes a relationship with a building, with real estate, with icons, with treasures (real or imagined) and with rituals and performances and traditions which are themselves reputed to be of heavenly value. In many cases religion promises spiritual rewards based on an individual's relationship with a multi-national religious corporation. Your relationship with that legal, religious entity, says religion, is based on law—a law which is, when all is said and done, its laws, its rules, its regulations.

CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE

Us For Them - Gungor


US FOR THEM
GUNGOR

When the lines are drawn
When you’re in or out
When it’s us or them
And we shame the doubt

It is all a lie
All we ever really need is love
There’s no need to shed more blood
Look upon the cross
Look upon the cross

See the face of Christ
See the mercy in His eyes
Every valley shall be lifted high
Now our enemies are blessed
The heavy laden rest
For His judgement is love
His judgement is love

There is no more guilt
There is no more shame
All our darkest sin
All our deepest pain

Blessed are the poor
All the lonely broken lost and torn
See a kingdom comes to us
A war that’s fought with love
Our only war is love

Prepare the way of the Lord
Wielding mercy like a sword
Every mountaintop will be made low
Know, He holds the earth like dust
And His judgement comes to us
And His judgement is love
His judgement is love

We will not fight their wars
We will not fall in line
Cause if it’s us or them
It’s us for them
It’s us for them

We reject the either or
They can’t define us anymore
Cause if it’s us or them
It’s us for them
It’s us for them

Cause if it’s us or them
It’s us for them
It’s us for them

Prepare the way of the Lord
Wielding mercy like a sword
Every mountaintop will be made low
Know, He holds the earth like dust
And His judgement comes to us
And His judgement is love
May our judgement be love