11th February 2017 - Josh Mackay
Barabbas was a man who lived in Jerusalem, Judea, around AD29 during the time of the Roman Empire. Barabbas was a troublemaker, a thief and a murderer. The punishment for his crimes was that he had to be crucified; which was a common punishment. This meant that he was to be nailed to a wooden cross until he would die of exhaustion and suffocation. Beyond these details, the Bible does not tell us very much about Barabbas, so the story described below is a realistic interpretation of what may have taken place. Often the Romans would force a criminal to make the cross that they were going to die on. This may have been to cause the criminal some mental suffering to go with the […]
A person who thinks with sober judgement is able to properly worth themselves and worth others. This is fundamental to worshipping in spirit and in truth. Jesus taught that ‘God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth’. When we are born of God, we have the ability to worship the Lord because the Spirit of God is in us. This is evident because the Holy Spirit gives to us the capacity to love and appreciate others. This capacity replaces the self-centredness which, otherwise, gives rise to comparisons and competition, as well as to jealousy and conflict. These fallen attitudes and behaviours cause the wounding of others, and our own alienation from fellowship within families, the church, and the presbytery.
Worshipping in spirit and truth means relating to others with integrity. A son of God who has integrity is not attempting to project an image of themselves that is self-defined or created. They are not presenting themselves one way in a particular fellowship context, such as the church, and then engaging in another context, such as their home, in a different manner.
As we are increasingly becoming real about who we are, and recognising the name and grace of our brethren, we are being restored to first love at the communion table and in the presbytery. By this means, the ground of deceit is undermined. This means that the truth regarding the names of each person is being made known, and the liberty of the sons of God is being promoted.
It is our ability to worship that enables genuine relationship with our brethren, which is the capacity to be joined together in truth. Relationship is demonstrated by the action of laying down one’s life for the brethren in the midst of the fellowship of the body of Christ, and also under Christ’s hand in the presbytery.