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The Moral Argument for God’s Existence.

  An atheist might say you can be good without believing in God. However the question isn’t can you be good without believing in God but can you be good without God? Here’s the problem if there’s no God. What basis remains for objective good or bad, right or wrong? If God does not exist objective moral values do not exist. Here’s why. Without some objective reference point we    really have no way of saying something is up or down. Gods nature however provides an objective reference point for moral values. It’s the standard which all action and thoughts are measured. However, if there is no God then there is no objective reference point. All we are left with is one persons view point as opposed to some other persons view point. This makes morality subjective not objective.  It’s like a preference for vanilla ice cream. The preference is in the subject not the object. Therefore it doesn’t apply to other people. In the same way subjective morality applies only to the subject. It’s not va

Do we see what Jesus wanted for His church today?

Mark 10:42-43 (NIV)
[42] Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. [43] Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,

The context of these verses was about a couple of disciples coming to Jesus and asking for positions of authority over the other disciples. When the others disciples got wind of this they got mad. Probably because they got beat to the punch. However, Jesus uses this opportunity to teach his disciples some valuable lessons about Him and His kingdom and about how those that want to be His followers should live their lives as citizens of His kingdom here on earth towards Him and one another.

Ever since the Fall in the Garden of Eden people have been jockeying for position one over another. We begin to see this right away. We were created in the image of God. In the community of God there is perfect equality. When they created us, male and female, we were to live side by side. The woman was a helper to the man. In the same way that the bible describes the Lord as the helper to people. Before God they were on the same level playing field. Then came the fall and we see God setting the standards for the first human relationship in its fallen state. Genesis 3:16 God tells the woman that the man will rule over her. This wasn’t how it was meant to be. Since the fall even this standard has been corrupted by the corrosive effect of sin. I’ve seen married relationships were the woman is clearly the boss and the man is ruled by the woman. Even beyond the intimate relationship of a man and woman we see this pecking order type of living in all the different parts of societies.

We see these hierarchical systems of social organization in children. In the school setting as early as elementary school someone asserts themselves or a perception is generated that one kid is somehow superior to the rest. Then there is this desire by others to be accepted or approved of. Within this pecking order people are accepted or rejected. People are ruled over and demand of or exiled and slandered. This system is seen in the work place and the civic social order and the political state or nations.

This is what we see taking place with the disciples when they ask Jesus for positions of authority. This is what is inside them, a result of their sinful human nature. This is what they have grown up with in the society around them. This is what they think the future will be like even with Jesus. Even though God understood this view and tried to help humanity to keep this view in check. He also knew what the real remedy was and that remedy would be found in Jesus and the help of the Holy Spirit. The example of his remedy should be displayed to humanity through His bride, the church. So Jesus points this reality out to his disciples and then teaches them how it should be with them and those they disciple, the body of Christ, the church.

First he tells them to scrap what their inner inclinations are and what they see around them in regards to the rulers and officials of the earthly institutions. God’s view on leaders is not the same as the worlds view. They were not to mimics the hierarchical systems of the world. They were to follow His model. The model of a servant. The model that doesn’t strive to rule over others but to serve one another out of love. A model that doesn’t seek out positions over but positions under.

A perfect example of this is seen at the last supper. Jesus becomes the lowest servant in a household. The servant that gets down on their knees and washes the feet of the guest that come in from the outside. Feet that have not been covered with socks and shoes. These were feet that were uncovered and caked with dirt and whatever livestock excrement that might have been in the street that day. This is the leadership Jesus wanted his disciples to model. The leadership that is humble and serving not full of pride and ruling.

In Matthew 23:8-11 Jesus tells his disciple to not copy the practices of the religious leaders of the day.

[8] “But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,' for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. [9] And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,' for you have one Father,* and he is in heaven. [10] Nor are you to be called ‘teacher,' for you have one Teacher, the Christ.* [11] The greatest among you will be your servant.* [12] For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.*

Again, Jesus stands how the world views leadership on its head. He strips away the tendencies of the sinful human nature desire to want to rule and clamor for status and titles of prestige. This is what the religious leaders of the day lived for and wanted. I remember as a new Christian this passage stuck out to me because what I saw in the church didn’t seem to fit what Jesus taught. I was at a new member’s reception and I went up to the ‘pastor’ and asked him if I could call him by his first name, Glen. He looked at me with all seriousness and told me I was to call him Pastor Glen. Inwardly that didn’t seem right or feel right to me at the time but I was so young in the faith and I thought he probably knew something I didn’t. There was another incident with an assistant ‘pastor’ that explained to me that my experience in the military and its rank structure should be a guide to me as to how the leadership at the church should be looked at.

Jesus understood something the disciples didn’t at the time. When you begin to take on titles for yourself and demand from people to call you by these titles and to receive recognition for yourself with these titles you place yourself over others instead of beside or under others. You set up a hierarchical system of the world. We see this with the word ‘Pastor’. In the bible this was a gift that was given by the Holy Spirit for the body of Christ. However, this gift has turned into a position and the word has become a title. We see this with the title Father and Reverend. We have these classes of people within the body of Christ called clergy and laity. With these title and positions we have institutionalized religion. The very thing Jesus didn’t want to happen with His bride. Even Paul didn’t use his gift as an apostle as a title. We don’t see him writing in his letter ‘Apostle Paul’ like we do today with ‘Pastor’, Pastor Bob or Pastor Tom. No Paul says in his letters ‘Paul, an apostle’. When we read the description of the gifts in regards to the body of Christ no gift was better or more important than another. However, when we turn gifts into titles we elevate one person over another. The level playing field that Jesus wants us all to stand on start developing hills and holes that people begin to stand on and in. Someone is above another or someone is below another. We become like the world around us.

As followers of Jesus Christ, as individuals and as a body of believers we are called to be ambassadors of Christ and His kingdom, to manifest God’s love and the life He want us to live, God’s life.

Jesus wants us to be leaders but not as the world defines leaders. It’s not a hierarchical system because when this kind of system takes hold we give the enemy a foothold within the body and therefore an avenue into the lives of individuals. Then the kingdom of God, as represented by the body of Christ stops being a reflection of God’s love and His leadership style of His bride.

The prophecy of the coming of Jesus in Isaiah provides us with a great illustration of how we are to live as brothers and sister in Christ under Christ leadership.

Luke 3:4-6 (NIV)
[4] As is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet:
“A voice of one calling in the desert,
‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
make straight paths for him.
[5] Every valley shall be filled in,
every mountain and hill made low.
The crooked roads shall become straight,
the rough ways smooth.
[6] And all mankind will see God's salvation.'”**

When we envision these verses about Jesus and what he came to do we see him creating a level playing field with no obstacles in the way to live the life God wants for His people to live. A valley filled in and a mountain brought down creates a plain. When the crooked roads are done away with and the obstacles are removed you have a place were everyone is side by side. No one is on a mountain above another person or in a valley below another person or an obstruction that blocks the way of a person to see and know the God who loves them.

What really stinks is that even though Jesus came to do away with the division, factions and cliques that these hierarchical systems bring. These systems which are a manifestation of the fallen sinful nature of humanity. The church today has embraced these systems for centuries. They’ve been passed on from generation to generation with really no question asked. It’s just how things have been done and those that get it handed to them benefit from it so why change. Why really examine?

Love the community of believers anyways. Go to church and find those people that love the Lord and fellowship with one another. Pray for one another. Help one another. Don’t give up on the body of Christ as we see it today. God hasn’t. I believe He still speaks to us even with all the obstacles we put in the way. Because He is greater and he will bring about restoration in His time. He’s been carrying the gospel message forward throughout the ages despite us and He’ll continue you do so. 


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