Friday, January 18, 2013


Could it be that the one church group that emphasized baptism the most underscores life in the Spirit the least?  It appears this may have been our past trend.  We have taken unity in Christ to mean that one is to become standardized to the herd's way of thinking.

When I was converted I repeatedly heard about two clear routes the believer was to take.  One was a call to stick to the Old Paths and the second was to stick to the Narrow Road.  While both are biblical expressions, neither calls an individual to ancienticity nor legalistic timidity.

Jesus is abundant and provides excessively and lavishly.  We are called to be liberal in God and conservative in self.  Yet, self can be a religious bully which stalks and hounds us to be fearful of everything from our shadows to God's Most Holy Spirit.

The baptized are set free; not reduced to standardized formula.  The best the latter can do, since they are frozen in fear to serve valiantly, is to criticize the free ones.  This is a consistent standardized style which never changes is the standard of being stillborn into the kingdom. 

I was baptized and then standardized.  I preached standard things in standard ways with standard words for standard members to live standard lives.  Few lived robustly in His Spirit.  I certainly didn't because I was preaching my standard sermon against such heresy.  Rather we lived suspiciously of every religious neighbor who had not been properly and truthfully standardized.

God is changing all of this because He is changing a high volume of people which would include us.  Two things seem to be happening simultaneously; the more I see my personal lack the more I see Jesus' heroic essence.  I am glad I was baptized and urge every person who will hear to do the same.

Today, however, I cheer the newborn on to heights of God's terrain that will thrill the soul for it will be eternally far too grand to comprehend such glory and awe.  May we not be afraid to tread upon the majestic possibilities that only the spirit of a person would dare explore.

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