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Lectionary

Preserved not by us.

The gospel is not a matter of mere belief. As James said, the devil believes in Christ, and trembles. We only know the truth in part, and we are broken. We cannot describe God completely, and we can control the weather about as much as we can the spirit of God, which is not at all. We do not hold to our belief and our salvation. We are incapable of this. It is the Spirit of God within us that saves us and sanctifies us.

Which is why we are warned not to grieve the spirit.

Romans 8:1-11

1There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do: by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and to deal with sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4so that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5For 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. 6To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law – indeed it cannot, 8and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

9But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.

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There are a few ways that the world and the flesh want us to injure the spirit. The first is that we stop seeing our identity as being of Christ. We define ourselves by our nation, our skin colour, our political party, or our vices. We require that all other respect nay celebrate these things. This is the rainbow heresy, and it is another form of cultural Marxism, this time using Gomorrah as a model. No platforming and regulated speech is the start. Mandatory mob participation (as happened to the guests of Lot) is the endpoint.

The second is that we think we can discipline ourselves into the gospel. We cannot. Jordan Peterson will fail, because we are not divine. We need the divine within us, and that only comes by the spirit of God dwelling in us.

The third is that we get distracted by the bright and shiny things, and forget that one storm can rip all these ephemera away.

To remind us all, the spirit of God only dwells in those of Christ, who believe in him.

And the world hates this.

Do not be them. Do not be like them.

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