Why Did Judas Commit Suicide?
Why does anyone commit suicide?
People take their lives for several reasons.
Reason #1: To Get Love
Some believe by taking their lives they will get the love they long for from their friends, family, and others.
Reason #2: To Give Others A Chance At Happiness
Some believe by taking their lives they will give those they love a chance at happiness.
They see themselves as the cause of the hurt, pain, and problems in the family, and they believe by taking their lives they will be eliminating the source of the hurt, pain, and problems (themselves) and by doing so give their loved ones a chance at happiness.
Sharing the good news of God's grace, that he has freely given to us in Christ, with those in your church, Sunday
School class, small group, Bible Study Fellowship, etc... is risky.
Sharing that God is not counting our sins against us is risky.
Sharing we don't ask for forgiveness but accept God's forgiveness through faith is risky.
Sharing that all of our sins have been forgiven by God is risky.
Sharing we don't have to continually confess sins to stay forgiven and in fellowship with God (close to God) is risky.
In the Bible, Jesus is called the Righteous One (Isaiah 53:11, Acts 13:14, 7:52, 22:14, 1 John 2:1).
This means Jesus was completely pure, clean, loving, holy...without a sinful thought, desire, or deed.
Everyone else is unrighteous (Romans 3:10).
Isaiah 53:11 revealed the Righteous One would come and make the unrighteous righteous by bearing their sinfulness and giving them his righteousness.
This is the Grace Exchange.
The Grace Exchange is when Jesus exchanged his righteousness for our sinfulness.
Many believers in Jesus are held hostage by their ministry or church leaders.
The are unable to enjoy their freedom in Christ because they have never been taught the fullness of God's grace freely given to them in him.
They have NOT been taught...
...they are under grace, not under law,
...they died to the law and now live by faith in Jesus, the one who loved them and gave his life for them.
They have NOT been taught...
...they have been given every spiritual blessing in Christ and do not try to earn God's blessings through tithing, obedience, etc.
Have you ever been accused of being out of your mind as you shared the good news of God's grace with people?
You are not alone.
So was Paul.
In 2 Corinthians 5:13, Paul says,
“If we are “out of our mind,” as some say, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.”
So why would some people say Paul was out of his mind?
To understand why, we must look at this verse in context, starting with 2 Corinthians 3.
In 2 Corinthians 3, Paul explains that God made him a competent minister of the new covenant (grace) and not a minister of the old covenant (law-10 Commandments).
Fully Devoted Followers of Jesus or Led by the Spirit of Jesus?
I know it sounds odd, even absurd, for me to make such a statement about believers not being called to be fully devoted followers of Jesus.
In this post, I hope to bring clarity as to why we are not called to be fully devoted followers of Jesus in the new covenant of grace (how we relate to God following the death, burial, resurrec...tion, and ascension of Jesus, in contrast to how a person related to him before each of these).
Here are my thoughts based on what I see in the Bible:
There are many preachers within Christianity teaching people they must be “baptized in the Spirit” or “filled with the Holy Ghost” to be Spirit-filled.
They teach the “baptism in the Spirit” is evidenced by speaking in tongues.
They tell people that unless they speak in tongues, they are not Spirit-filled.
They pressure others to speak in tongues.
They surround people at church services, attempting to have them “pray in tongues”.
They coach people on how to speak in tongues.
They will make you feel inferior because you do not speak in tongues.
The writer of the letter of Hebrews exhorts those who had once embraced the new covenant of grace to not drift from it (Hebrews 2:1, 9).
Drifting from grace is drifting back into a religious system, spiritual disciplines, or legalistic church practices as the means for relating to God.
The new covenant of grace in Hebrews is relating to God based solely by faith in the finished work of Jesus.
It is resting in God's complete forgiveness.
It is enjoying fellowship with God 24/7, not because a person confessed all of his sins.
A popular sermon series by many pastors is entitled "All In".
This series comes from the Great Commandment verses in the Bible taken completely out of context and is intended to motivate believers to be "all in" for God, to move them from being "a spectator to a participator" in the church.
If believers are not careful, they will be misled by this series, trying to be "all in" for God, when God is not asking them to be "all in" for him.
Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. The mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind of the flesh is hostile to God: It does not submit to God’s Law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the flesh cannot please God.
What does it mean to live according to the flesh (the mind of the flesh) and what does it mean to live according to the Spirit (the mind of the Spirit)?