TRANSFORMATION
 
How it is nice to be at home for a change, and rest a little bit. I wish I could read all those magazines. I think I would do it right away, and sit on that rocking chair. Well, where to start. Those scandal magazines I leave to my wife. Here is an interesting article from London. An English soldier was brutally murdered by two converted muslims. One of them is even bragging in the front of a camera. The coranic order in the surah of Al-Tauba made them do that heinous act. Public officers are still searching for a motive to that act. Strange, what people are ready to do in the name of religion.

Here I have so much to ponder again. I think they say somewhere in their scriptures that the gates of paradise are opened to those who kill and are killed in the path of Allah, in the holy war, in jihad. As reward there will be rivers flowing with wine, and tens of lovely virgins sweetening lives of those warriors of faith. In many parts the Koran exhorts to fight against unbelievers, and destroy or subjugate them. From the Christian point of view all that is so strange. Some where beyond this life, there are men walking obsessed by pride, bitterness, lustfulness, hatred and despise. Oh boy, sounds like real paradise to me. Well, of course, in everything they want to become like their prophet.

How seldom you think about that great mercy that you have received in Christ. Without His transforming power we all could be more or less like those men. Carnal and doomed, without any understanding of Godly matters: "For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God." (Romans 8:6-8)

If you do not want to be in the likeness of those men or of like-minded persons, the process of transformation must start in this life. We do not find that changing power from ourselves. People have tried that through the history of Christianity but with lousy results. Where is the solution for that dilemma. Even that has been resolved already: "For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." (Romans 8:13)

Yes, the transformation must start in the close relationship with the Lord, of course. Mere practicing Christianity is not enough, but we have to find out the promises and orders of the Bible, and keep them: "He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him." (John 14:21) When the Lord reveals Himself to any of His followers there will be a wonderful freedom process as a result: "Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord." (2. Cor. 3:17-18)

Well, we do not become flawless in this life though we are in this wonderful process of transformation. I must remind myself to have mercy on my fellow travelers, in their flaws and errors. Hopefully they do the same to me. Yes, the going on in the divine flock of children must be like this: "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure." (1. John 3:1-3)

Oh boy, how many times I have fallen, and thought this leads to nothing. Not even in that, you do not have to get depressed and give up, because the work God has begun He does not leave unfinished: "I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ." ( Phil. 1:3-6)

How my thoughts are flying far away to the future, away from this world. What kind of bliss is waiting for them who are on any phase of this process of transformation: " Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there). And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it. But there shall by no means enter into it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb's Book of Life." (Rev. 21:25-27)

With transformative greetings
J. P.

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