Ho ho ho here I am in chi chi chic Coal Yard London, so hipsterly couture you need fingerless hands in your fingerless mittens to fit in. It is so shallowly pointlessly hard-stoop erstatz inspired it gently appalls. My father owns the sheep on a thousand hills and as regards the rest, well I lived in real designer land for 30 years, so for me their fabulous Tomorrowland is so passé. This place is gentrified to the point of desertification. The Kingdom of Heaven on the other hand, is the real thing, whereas this place is just the sad worldly imitation.
As it is the Rio Olympics at the moment, I thought that games and races might be a pleasent topic to explore. So let’s do a quest game that is a race!
Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
Matthew 7:7-8 (KJV)
Oft times people only remember the part “seek and ye shall find.” However what Matthew says is so important, it is in essence repeated in the very next sentence. Experienced bible readers will know that if something is important it is repeated, either in the same book, or elsewhere in the bible. “Seek and ye shall find” is initially given in a context – that of asking, being given, seeking, finding, knocking, and opening. Lest you be tempted to take any of these six elements out of context, Matthew repeats all six elements in the same order in the very next passage. I think it therefore safe to say that all six are essential to the concept Matthew is trying to convey and in that order.
So, when you need something – perhaps something you have lost, or maybe something you simply need – don’t just say to yourself in a “secular” way “seek and ye shall find” as if like some hopeful mantra this will simply aid your perseverance “acting in your own strength” and so lead to your finding whatever it is you seek. Matthew is telling you to ASK first, then you will be GIVEN something to help you in the seeking (the Holy Spirit) THEN SEEK and you will FIND. Sadly even then most people will stop. Hey-ho I got what I was seeking game over. No! Matthew has reiterated that there are still two elements to do. KNOCK and it shall be OPENED. But surely you have what you sought? How about some gratitude though? Maybe knock on God’s gate just to say thank you? God has all sorts of lovely surprises. If you were ever blessed, perhaps as a child, to have a relative who you would go visit to say thank you for a gift and at that meeting they would then give you something more, then you have already experienced what paying a grateful visit to your creator can be like.
There is a clue to the gift you will receive. Matthew does not say you what you knock on. People think usually in terms of a door, but Matthew only a little further on is letting you in on some further information you need on your quest – yes it IS like an questing adventure game – you do have to strive to achieve the ultimate prize in the race of life (Psalm 19:5, Ecclesiastes 9:11, 1 Corinthians 9:24, Hebrews 12:1).
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
Matthew 7:14 (KJV)
It is not a door you are knocking on – well think about it – where in a naïf sense would you find God living? – Heaven. Never heard of Heaven’s gate? Think of the walled cities – gates. Jesus being a “good shepherd” and sheep pens with gates to keep them safe. Anyway Matthew has made it easy, he’s told you its a gate, that is narrow (strait) found on a narrow way, he has said where it leads (life – hint: God is the source of all life) and (big hint) that this is something for the seeker (few there be that find it). So its a GATE you need to KNOCK on. THEN it gets OPENED and you get your big surprise extra reward, that you did not expect. And even though you read all this stuff about God, and you read in the bible what heaven is like – you see through a glass darkly, you CANNOT imagine the things God has ready to give you in the eternal life to come. Not things you ask for, you are not capable of asking for what you cannot imagine, so God does not expect you to ask for what happens once the gate has been opened. God operates through a relationship of grace. Go get to know Him, for sure ask for your simple needs but when you are seeking, remember Matthew already gave you the information about WHAT you should REALLY BE SEEKING before you got to the bit about seek and ye shall find:
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Matthew 7:14 (KJV)
In summary, life is a race, but the swiftest runners are not doing it in their own strength – they get help from God. In Isaiah we have a whole section about gates in the description of the temple, but since Jesus made the new covenant we know the temple is now in us and the gate is the narrow one that Matthew describes, but the bible gives us clues on our quest, which is why we don’t just abandon the teachings God gave us before Jesus came and redeemed us with the new covenant. Close by Isaiah’s information about gates you will find:
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
Isaiah 40:31 (KJV)
You wanna run the race? Go seek God, see what He wants you to do, do it, and you’ll find Him directing your steps along that race, the shortest most direct route. The real universe is not just the three or four dimensions you can experience easily – there are many more (Paul talks about this and I have blogged about it extensively). We all know the quicker route is the straight one, this road is straight but it goes to other dimensions – heaven. You are SEEKING that ROAD because you are seeking the WAY to Kingdom of Heaven. It is not in a direction YOU can even see, let alone run along, in your own strength. You need to find the WAY. You have been told where to find the way. You need to go meet the WAY and when you do He will show you and help you to run it. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake… Psalm 23 – the clues are everywhere once you start reading the bible. Go knock on His gate – its right there, inside you, in your heart. Your heart beats knock knock knock – a clue. It has a double beat, boom-boom, a clue to the original two tablets of the law, which is now graven on your heart – your conscience. In Psalm 19:8 you can see these words set out literally written there for you right next to each other: “…the heart: the commandment…” just another clue for you there. And you need a strong heart to run a race… not in your earthly strength, but in that God-logic opposite sense – weak made strong in the Saviour’s Love as the hymn goes.
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
John 14:6 (KJV)
Remember Psalm 19:5 – a race for a strong man is a joy? Read the rest of that Psalm and you will see the prophecy of the marriage – THE marriage of the Church and Christ. There is a prize worth running for!
Moslem shopkeeper Asad Shah was killed after he wished Christians a Happy Easter. His last posted words included “…Let’s follow the real footstep of beloved holy Jesus Christ…”
The full story is well-reported in the Daily Mail Online at http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3509367/Muslim-shopkeeper-stabbed-death-hours-posted-happy-Easter-message.html#ixzz441hknWOQ
At Easter it is appropriate to quote the words of Christ. In this context I can think of no more appropriate words from the Prince of Peace than these He spoke on the cross:
And Jesus said unto him, “Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.”
Luke 23:43 (KJV)
The name Asad means Lion. Today I think maybe there is another Lion with the Lamb in paradise, which is not at all what the haters who do Satan’s work would have wanted.
How common are vast planet-wide underground oceans?
Jupiter’s moon Ganymede has vast underground ocean
How Jupiter Moon Europa’s Underground Ocean Was Discovered
Underground ocean found on Saturn’s moon Enceladus
Ancient Mars Water May Have Flowed Underground
Earth may have underground ‘ocean’ three times that on surface
So vast planet-wide oceans are not a crazy idea – they are commonplace and seemingly occur wherever there are planets and other planet sized rocks.
The crust of our planet that everyone lives on used to slide around on the core lubricated by a layer of water in between. It was made that way as we are told.
“And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.”
The bible uses accurate descriptive language.
If you read it more literally in the proper translation (the original KJV) you can learn scientific facts, properly. Jesus, the author, was called Rabbi. Rabbi means teacher. Rabbi means appointed leader. Which Rabbis do you trust?
A earth was bit like the shell of an uncooked egg sliding around over a huge yolk lubricated by the white of the egg. The egg gets knocked and spins and something cracks the shell a little bit. If the egg cracks in a few places but holds together pretty much, you will get some leakage of white though the cracks and bits of the shell will collapse directly onto the yolk as the layer of white in between has escaped. Egg white covers the surface of the egg, but it drys out quickly in many places.
If this happens to a real planet with a planet-wide underground ocean the flood comes up out of the ground and the land collapses onto the lower solid part beneath the water layer as the incompressible water is forced out through the cracks. Can you imagine the force of a whole continent squeezing out a whole ocean though tiny gaps? It would be the most amazing fountain you could have. Can you imagine those fountains of the deep? Take look at a space picture of the water volcano on Europa. http://www.seasky.org/solar-system/assets/images/io03_sk12.jpg Europa’s fountain is tiny.
What kind of a mess would that make of the surface of the planet?
Geological Layers Laid Down Quickly Atop Mount St. Helens
As the surface shell collapses huge amounts of pulverised rock are dissolved into the water then settle as many layers as the different particle sizes and densities settle at different rates. Geologists call layers of rock strata. You can see 21 feet of lots of different strata at Mount St.Helens where people actually stood and watched the 21 foot set of layers form in just 24 hours. Many layers of rock formed in just a day.
The many animals killed in the flood settled according to their densities and sizes also, and ended up in the different layers. They were buried suddenly so they didn’t rot. The wet earth leeched salts and minerals into them under hight pressure of the weight and they became like stone. Geologists call these fossils. They look like they got there gradually and change according to the layers, which gave people the idea of evolution, which was wrong. Evolution happens to relatively simple things like bacteria like they get immunity to antibiotics and new variations of diseases come along, but big things like cows and elephants and us can’t do that because the intermediate steps are not viable. Occassional variations (epigenetic, teratagenetic and other mutations) to big things mostly just die so don’t get to breed and pass it on.
Before the surface layer collapsed the air was low in moisture, but as day and night temperatures varied, some water percolated up through the ground as mist which was ample to sustain life. Something about the position of the planet, the state of its magnetic field and the solar wind drove off the water from the atmosphere quickly but the daily mists replenished it constantly from the vast underground ocean.
The planet began to shift position and the stress of this caused the surface layer collapse.
11In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. 12And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.
Water welled up out of the earth.
The previously dry air became supersaturated with water and it rained as it had never previously done.
17And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth. 18And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the earth; and the ark went upon the face of the waters. 19And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth; and all the high hills, that wereunder the whole heaven, were covered. 20Fifteen cubits upward did the waters prevail; and the mountains were covered. 21And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man: 22All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died. 23And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark. 24And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days.
So it was bad for the things living on the planet, but it needed a good wash because all the sin was making it stinky, and there was a rescue plan which we know about in detail which worked, so a few of the important species survived, including us.
The flood was over quickly because the conditions that caused the water in the atmosphere to be taken away into space persisted long enough to dry out much of the huge flood. The planet ended up in a new stable orbit where the atmospheric drying effect no longer happened, and was left with some of the floodwater as oceans still covering about two thirds of it’s surface in the areas where the collapsed surface had fallen deepest.
With a new moist atmosphere that didn’t get evaporated into space in the new stable orbit, all sorts of things like rain and rainbows could happen for the first time, and once the crust had collapsed it couldn’t ever happen again. The big bits of crust still moved about a bit and although there was still a huge amount of water down there in pockets, the movement of these plates with no lubrication they scraped on the inner layer and heated up due to the friction, making lot of magma which some of the water down there dissolved into. The symptom of all this was the tectonic plates, earthquakes and volcanoes we still have today.
Unfortunately the survivors have so far not all lived happily ever after, and an even worse disaster is coming.
The earth will wobble on its axis as the fabric of our four regular space-time dimensions that were stretched out will roll up like some of the the tiny other of the ten dimensions already are. It will curl into a singularity closed forever. The bible uses accurate descriptive language.
The good news is we know about this and there is a rescue plan.
- The Bible is true
- Genesis is true
- The flood that Noah saved us from is true
- Revelation is true
- Jesus is the truth, the way and the life
Jesus as God made the whole universe, he made you, he loves you, the earth is broken and not worth repairing because it’s in a universe that is unstable, the forces of darkness are also in this universe, so he’s going to let it collapse into a singularity taking everything in it locking the bad away forever. He knew all this from the start, but he’s doing it this way so you get a choice, so you have free will with a real soul, alive like him who made you in his image, and are not just a clockwork toy.
The end of this universe will not be nice for anyone left here, but he can save you.
He will make a new universe which is called a new heaven.
He will make a new earth.
The bible uses accurate descriptive language.
He will take you there just before this one ends
He has told you everything you need to know in his living book.
Salvation is yours if you want it but it’s not compulsory, you have to choose it. You have choose him. A simple call on Jesus by name will do, you choose to change then call him, he will do the rest. Everything he has put in his book is true, and so is that.
The bible is an interactve book – you get to choose your own ending – I recommend the living happily ever after option.