Sunday, 1 January 2017

The Test of Today

I believe that now is a time of great testing of human beings; a sorting out of the sheep from the goats. That's the only explanation for the state of the world today and why so much falsehood is presented as truth in the public forum and then allowed such a free rein. We are being weighed in the balance, subjected to tests of heart and mind and will to find if we are worthy of entering into a state of spiritual truth. In order to achieve this we often have to go against the flow of apparent right thinking instead of with it as might have been the case in earlier times. That is because only if we do this can it really be known that we are heeding the truth from inside ourselves, hence properly responding to God and not just following the path as it might have been imposed on us from outside. We now have to follow the line of most resistance. So we have to show both faith and courage, insight and the strength of mind to bear witness to it.

One of the main tests of the contemporary world is to see if we accept a lesser good as absolute and thereby reject the greater one. The lesser good is the well being of humanity considered as separate from God which means separate from truth. This, in part, explains the mass success of all liberal doctrines and how they have become identified with goodness and virtue. These doctrines might have had some validity to them if this world were all that there was but as that is not the case, they are profoundly false. They are predicated on the basis that there is no Creator with a purpose that goes beyond our immediate happiness and fulfilment in this world, and that, insofar as a human being is concerned, what you see is what you get. They rely for their truth on a denial of God (which makes it strange that so many religious people, especially those in roles of authority, adopt them), and they emphasise the second of Christ's commandments (love your neighbour) at the expense of the first (love God). Of course, even love of one's neighbour is only observed theoretically and as a means of signalling that you are on the right side. Incidentally, I find that loving your distant neighbour is now used as an excuse to pay less attention to your near one, demonstrating that love has little to do with it and is just used as an excuse to dismantle traditional structures of truth and rob them of their spiritually protective qualities.

Be that as it may, the fact is that the second commandment can only be truly observed when the first is achieved. That is because all love descends from God. He is the source of love and if you try to love while denying the source you are attempting the impossible. You cannot love in a spiritual sense, which means truly, unless you are at least somewhat aware of the reality of God. There is no love without God. You can be aware of the idea or fact of love because God is within you whether you acknowledge him or not, but this idea can only really come to life when you open your heart and mind up to God or Christ who is his human face and form. If you can't do this then what you call love will be like a copy of something rather than the thing itself. It will never catch fire until it is touched by the flame of God, and this means the true God, known in the heart, and not an idea about him you might have formed.

So modern liberal doctrines might have some truth in them but it is the truth of a counterfeit rather than the genuine article. Indeed liberalism is best seen as precisely that, a counterfeit of Christianity, a Christianity flattened out, secularised and brought down to this world. It was very probably specifically designed to replace the real thing by apparently retaining the good bits but throwing out the superstitions. In fact, it does the very opposite and keeps the shell while discarding the nut. But then those who oppose liberal doctrines must take care that they do not fall into the extreme of denying these have any validity at all, even on a relative level. If you oppose liberalism, as you should, you must not let that push you into the opposite extreme. Remember there are two commandments, love God and love man. The latter must be seen in the light of the former but if you neglect the latter then you become almost as bad as those who neglect or deny God. This too is part of the test of today. Don't let the lies of the enemy lead you into the over-reaction of rejecting the reality of the truth he presents in a deformed and corrupted state.

Many previous generations have felt they were living in the end times as predicted in the New Testament. It would certainly seem we do so today not just because Christianity is less and less followed in lands where it has held sway for centuries, but also because what calls itself Christianity now is less and less the real thing, having increasingly become quite another set of beliefs that have assumed the Christian name and outer form. Wherever the transcendent Creator takes second place to the needs, wishes and requirements of earthly man, and has to fit into those, you can be sure that what you are seeing is not the religion of Christ. But even if these are not the end times, they are still times of testing when those who would win the prize are subjected to examination. But they will also be supported if their hearts are true and their efforts sincere. The tests will be hard but if you humbly pray for help then it will be given. Not necessarily in the form you expect but in a way that supports you as you need to be supported. That is to say, by strengthening you for the fight not taking away the need for it just as was the case for Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.

The increasing polarisation of the last few years has made it seem that we are coming ever closer to a fork in the road where a real choice has to be made in that two alternatives will be available to us and we can no longer hedge our bets. We will have to decide whether to serve God or Man, though naturally the choice will not be presented in so unsubtle a form as that. In fact, some people might think they are serving God when they are not at all. This is something we must all watch out for. Jesus' words in Matthew 7:21 might apply to any one of us if we are not careful.
 Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven."

So now is the time of spiritual testing but my feeling is that, because God is merciful, the majority of those who fall short are not lost but will be consigned to other spheres where their spiritual education will continue, albeit in a more prosaic and therefore much longer way. But why waste time and go the long way round? Let us make the right decision now.

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