Spirit Life

Ezek 37:11-14 KJV; Ps 119:129-136 KJV; Rom 8:5-11 KJV; Mark 10:46-52 KJV

Introduction      

According to Paul there is an infallible criterion for telling if a person is/is not a real Christian or not? “Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” (Rom 8:9 KJV). He sidesteps question of ethical and religious practice to declare that Christians are people in whom the Holy Spirit lives.

People are not on some sort of spiritual scale with especially wicked people on one end and especially saintly on the other with one end headed for hell and the other headed for heaven. In Paul’s categorical language if you don’t have the Spirit you are “in the flesh”. By flesh he doesn’t mean “body” but the power of a sinful nature that opposes the will of God.

Jesus himself explained, “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit….(John 3:6 KJVIt is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is useless. (John 6:63 KJV). You either have a wholly natural life shaped by this world or a supernatural life shaped in the Spirit of Christ. Life “in the flesh” means death life “in the Spirit” is eternal life.

Exposition

v.5 For 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.

Fleshly people think fleshly thoughts without concern for the thoughts of God (cf. Prov 23:7 KJV).

Their outlook on life is never Christ-centred and they just don’t “get the vibe” of godly things (1 Cor 2:14 KJV). I’ve met so many people, often on planes, who seem to have resonance at all with spiritual realities. They’re not especially bad people in a moral sense but as people of the flesh they’re spiritually dead people. Unlike genuine believers there’s no struggle within them to lead a holy life, no evidence of the Holy Spirit fighting against their worldly desires (Gal 5:16-17 KJV).

People “in the flesh” simply obey their baser nature without a struggle.

Would that it were that simple. Paul was exasperated by immature Christians in Corinth, “brothers and sister… I could not talk to you as I would to spiritual people, but as I would to people of the flesh, as infants in Christ(1 Cor 3:1 KJV).

Are you an “infant in Christ”?

If you are a young person who spends more time worrying about your image on social media than reflecting the image of God then you are a spiritual infant. If you are an older people obsessed with your health or your grandchildren rather than being zealous for the kingdom of God then you are a “pygmy” in Christ.

Most Christians spend too much time thinking about food, finances, coffee, gossip, television and so on.

The common refrain “I know I should spend more time praying and reading the Bible.” is a good intention but useless until your mind controlled submits to the Holy Spirit.

vs.6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. vs.7 For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. vs.8 Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Those who “set their minds on the flesh” live as though this world contained the meaning of life. Paul’s says such a self-indulgent person “is dead even while she lives(1 Tim 5:6 KJV). Looking back on his pleasure seeking days without Christ, St Augustine commented, “Such was my life – was that life?

Men and women “in the flesh” do what they think seems best to them and adopt a way of life “hostile to God”.

They are, to quote from Romans 1, vs.29filled with every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarrelling, deception, malicious behaviour, and gossip. vs.30 They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful….disobedient to parents. vs.31 foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless.(29-31 cf. Col 1:21 KJV). Forget about the particular sins listed, the bottom line is that people of the flesh are self-centred.

In John Piper’s memorable words, they have a “suicidal love affair with independence from God.”  only the Holy Spirit can turn our self-centred thinking into Christ-centred living.

but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace” we are told. Moses declared, “the Lord your God…he is your life” (Deut 30:20); Jesus proclaimed, ““I am the resurrection and the life.”(John 11:25 KJV). Most Anglican churches each Sunday recite these words from the Nicene Creed, “We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life”. On the walls of the catacombs under Rome some oppressed Christian had inscribed these Spirit-inspired words in Latin, vita vita vita, “life, life, life”. Hallelujah. (Can you sense His (Spirit’s) presence even now?) Everything that the Spirit touches is infused with life and harmony with God – something inexpressibly wonderful.

The gift of the Spirit is absolutely indispensible to a spiritual life because in Paul’s sober estimation those “in the flesh cannot….submit to God’s law (and) cannot please God”.

Apart from the grace of the Spirit of God lost people have no ability1)See Biblical References John 6:63 KJV; John 8:34 KJV; Rom 5:6 KJV; (to please the Father of Jesus because they have no desire to obey him)2)See Biblical References 1 Cor 2:14 KJV; Eph 2:1-3 KJV. Now our passage turns to the positive by turning to focus more pointedly on the Spirit.

vs.9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

It is by entering the realm and rule of the Holy Spirit that natural people are turned into supernatural people who know and love Jesus.

When Paul says “the Spirit of God dwells in you” this could be translated as “makes his home in you”; the Spirit is intimate and influential inside the Christian (John 14:17 KJV).

One of the things that sends me crazy is hearing people refer to the blessed Holy Spirit as an “it” when as personal as the Father and the Son. Anyone who talks about the Spirit as if he were simply some power needs to grow in love with the Spirit.

We love the Spirit by trusting him to work powerfully in our lives as he worked in the life of Jesus when he was on earth3)See Biblical References cf. John 7:37-39 KJV; 1 Cor 2:10 KJV. The Spirit’s great goal is to repeat in us what he did in Christ.

Christians stop growing into Christ-likeness when they resist the working of the Spirit. 

Jesus was quite categorical about the ministry of the Spirit, “he will glorify me by telling you whatever he receives from me(John 16:14 KJV). The test of whether we are trusting the Spirit is not some vague “spiritual” feeling but if Jesus is becoming greater and greater, constantly more glorious, in our estimation. I believe this is true for me, is this true for you?

vs.10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness

The “but” which begins this verse translates us out of uncertainty into the realm of sheer spiritual confidence. Born in the line of Adam we must still die bodily (Rom 5:12 KJV) but adopted into the line of Christ we will live forever – because it’s all about Jesus.

The “Spirit is life” not because we are good living people but because in justifying us, making us right with himself, God has shared with us the righteousness of Christ (1 Cor 1:30 KJV). Because we share in the scale of things as they are “in Christ” this is an utterly remarkable reality. Now comes the highest concentration point of the passage.

vs.11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

As the Holy Spirit gave eternal life to Jesus’ body by raising him from the dead so the same Spirit who lives in us will impart everlasting life to our weak mortal bodies.

The mighty power of the Spirit who breathed eternal life into the broken body in the tomb now indwells us (Eph 1:19-20 KJV) as a guarantee of sharing the eternal life he has given to Christ.

To appreciate, enjoy and be transformed by such a profound reality demands however a mind shaped by the Spirit.

If you focus on how you feel when you are sick and tired these spiritual truths will seem like fantasies, but if you believe that the Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead lives in you he will give you immeasurable consolation, encouragement and empowerment – to live for Jesus (cf. 2 Cor 1:3-11 KJV).

By faith your “life in the Spirit” will stand out amongst those who “live in the flesh” and have no hope.

Conclusion

True spirituality isn’t some set of religious beliefs or practices but living like Jesus did in the power of the Holy Spirit4)See Biblical References Matt 12:28 KJV; Luke 3:22 KJV; Luke 4:10, 18  KJV etc..

The only spirituality that counts is the spirituality of Jesus and only the Holy Spirit can teach and share such deep things with us (1 Cor 2:11-13 KJV).

The power of the Spirit was the secret of the right living of Jesus and the final explanation of how God raised him from the dead.

If we are “in Christ” the Spirit offers us nothing less than the quality of the presence and power of the resurrected life he gave to Jesus. Every believer and every congregation has a call of God on their life which can only be fulfilled through becoming more like Jesus which means constantly growing in the Spirit.

Let me try to explain something I sense in the Spirit but am finding difficult to explain.

How do you think Jesus felt when the Holy Spirit was outpoured into his mortal body in the tomb giving him new and indestructible life? He was overwhelmed with a sense of the goodness of the Spirit’s power.

Since the work of the Spirit was such great news for Jesus the Lord deeply wants to share with us the good news of the gift of the Spirit today5)See Biblical References Acts 2:38 KJV; Heb 2:3-4 KJV.

If you want to be free from habits and thought patterns you know shouldn’t be in your life the Holy Spirit has power for breakthrough.

If you want to speak to people about Jesus but get paralysed the Spirit will empower you. “In Christ” the Spirit offers us the quality of the presence and power of the resurrected life he gave to Jesus.

God gives the Holy Spirit to those who ask for him in Jesus’ name and for Jesus’ sake6)See Biblical References Luke 11:13 KJV; John 4:10 KJV; Acts 2:38 KJV.

Over the decades I’ve personally seen or heard countless testimonies from believers who were struggling in their Christian life and then called out to God and were encountered by a power to live for Jesus which made an enormous difference.

Some call this breakthrough the “second blessing” in the Spirit, some being “filled/baptised in the Spirit”.

Forget about the name for such an experience, all that matters is that the name of Jesus is exalted – which is the supreme passion of the life-giving Holy Spirit. Let us pray. 

MESSAGE DELIVERED: 28th October, 2018 Location: St Mark’s

Author: Dr. John Yates

MESSAGE
YouTube or PODCAST:

28th October, 2018.

References   [ + ]

1. See Biblical References John 6:63 KJV; John 8:34 KJV; Rom 5:6 KJV
2. See Biblical References 1 Cor 2:14 KJV; Eph 2:1-3 KJV
3. See Biblical References cf. John 7:37-39 KJV; 1 Cor 2:10 KJV
4. See Biblical References Matt 12:28 KJV; Luke 3:22 KJV; Luke 4:10, 18  KJV etc.
5. See Biblical References Acts 2:38 KJV; Heb 2:3-4 KJV
6. See Biblical References Luke 11:13 KJV; John 4:10 KJV; Acts 2:38 KJV

ETHICS: Sharper and Harder (The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female) Tue 30 Oct

Where is the battle going next? What will be the next front? The intensity of attack seems exponential.

“Have you ever noticed,” said Dimble, “that the universe, and every bit of the universe is always hardening and narrowing and coming to a point?”

His wife waited as those wait who know by long experience the mental processes of the person who is talking to them.

“I mean this,” said Dimble in answer to the question she had not asked. “If you dip into any college, or school, or parish, or family – anything you like – at a given point in its history, you always find that there was a time before that point when there was more elbow room and contrasts weren’t quite so sharp; and that there’s going to be a time after that point when there is even less room for indecision and choices are even more momentous. Good is always getting better and bad is always getting worse: the possibilities of even apparent neutrality are always diminishing. The whole thing is sorting itself out all the time, coming to a point, getting sharper and harder.” ―C.S.Lewis That Hideous Strength

Our presentation of truth, natural law, Biblical truth (Ps 119 law, statutes, principles, ways, precepts, decrees, commands) will be interpreted as hate speech.

How does this relate to the previous post re A Christian Basis re Transgenders?
See Full Article: “A Christian Basis re Transgenders and a safe place for our children.” chooselifeaustralia.org.au

The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female – is an unprecedented rebellion against God and His Creation.

THERE IS NO SPECTRUM

Loving our neighbour and our neighbour’s children means also warning against encroaching evil.

As watchmen WE are responsible if we do not sound the alarm.

If we, as informed Christians, support politicians and educators whose firm commitment is sexual confusion and indoctrination of our children, then we too are guilty of allowing our little ones to be led into sin.
 
Will we, in our voting, support an evil that Jesus condemned outright as evil?
 
Yes, the choices for our nation are sharper and harder – where “there is even less room for indecision and choices are even more momentous”. Sharper because the choices are more clear; harder because of the consequences to us if we fail in our watchman duty to love our neighbour, and because of the consequences to our nation if it does not heed the warning.
 
The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem and the heavens are open to wide-eyed shepherds.
Sing, dance, exchange gifts and good wishes. Forgive, be at peace with one another. There is something bigger than ourselves.
The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem.

ETHICS: A Christian Basis re Transgenders and a safe place for our children. (The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female) Oct 2018

What did Jesus say?

Firstly, Jesus affirmed the creation story. Matt 19:4-6 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh.”

The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female – is an unprecedented rebellion against God and His Creation.

We must preach and teach the fundamentals of creation and their application – male and female (no spectrum), its complementarity as the ordinance of marriage and the imago dei (Image of God) – to be created in the image of God.

Secondly, Jesus explained and affirmed the command (Luke 10:27) to love our neighbour. Loving our neighbour and our neighbour’s children means not only caring for them in present calamity but also warning against approaching calamity (e.g. a flash flood) or helping to protect their future from encroaching evil – in this instance state mandated sexual indoctrination.

Loving our neighbour is not optional. “Hate evil and love good, then work it out in the public square” (Amos 5:15 Msg)

Thirdly, Jesus said “whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matt 18:6).

Jesus’ condemnation re leading children into sin is quite specific as is its judgment. Other evils that concern us do not merit the same specific judgment. May this truth be reflected in our thinking and our living.

If we, as informed Christians, support politicians and educators whose firm commitment is sexual confusion and indoctrination of our children, then we too are guilty of allowing our little ones to be led into sin.

Also see:

Full Article: “A Perspective on our times to a Christian audience. Breakfast Talk Sat 30 Sept 2017” chooselifeaustralia.org.au

Full Article: “God’s Creation Order. What is our basis for this battle we are waging?” chooselifeaustralia.org.au

Lachlan Dunjey 25 October 2018


The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem and the heavens are open to wide-eyed shepherds. Sing, dance, exchange gifts and good wishes. Forgive, be at peace with one another. There is something bigger than ourselves. The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem.

ETHICS: The polarisation of medicine and medical defence organisations. (The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female) Oct 2018

What is child abuse? 

The mutually exclusive “affirming” pathways for children wishing to transgender represent a clear ethical divide in which it is essential for medicine, not activists and not governments, to be decisive and authoritative. There is no neutral.

It is inevitable that at some point there will be consumer legal action for either affirming OR failing to affirm.

Who will decide? Will it be doctors, psychologists or the lawmakers? If doctors, then will it be the psychiatrists or paediatricians who tend to have opposing views? Associations of paediatricians hold very definite opposing views.

Which side of the polarity regarding child abuse will Medical Defence Organisations defend? If they defend surgeons who do transgender mastectomy for a 25 yr-old on the grounds that fully informed consent was given, will they also defend surgeons who have done the same procedure for a 13 yr-old who decides to sue when an adult?

Further, will MDOs defend the surgeon who refuses to do a mastectomy for a 13 yr-old?

And how will MDOs decide? Will different MDOs have different approaches to these matters because their boards have been taken over by people with set ideologies?

Will MDOs simply side with what is legal – if governments declare that affirmation of birth sex or reversal counselling is child abuse and punishable by law?

For the sake of our MDO insurance premiums we need decisions now, rather than a decade from now. It is to be hoped that MDOs will continue their honourable, professional status and be much more than just another insurance company.

This is a clear ethical divide in which it is essential for medicine, not activists and not governments, to be decisive and authoritative. There is no neutral.

A note re affirmation of feelings unsupported by evidence.

“Yes, you must affirm the feelings – progress is not possible unless you do.”

“The evidence doesn’t have to support the feeling – it doesn’t have to be totally true.”

Déjà vu1)Déjà vu is the feeling that the situation currently being experienced has already been experienced in the past.?

Consider “recovered memories syndrome”. After attending a seminar in 1995 on Memories of Abuse, I wrote inter alia (Among other things) the following

If we have not ultimately questioned historical accuracy by using intervention strategies at some point and 20 people are imprisoned as a result of subsequent criminal charges, and it is then found that the memories were not factual, then – despite the existence of disclaimers and contracts – we may be accused of having failed in this wider responsibility.  This is equally true even if only 1 person is unjustly imprisoned, and it is also true even if only 1 person is unjustly accused.

And, re transgenders, if we have not even queried whether there are possible contributing factors or stressors in children wishing to transgender – such querying itself labelled as abuse by those who insist on affirming the wish – then we have failed our ethical and professional responsibilities as doctors, and our duty as community leaders and parents.

We have failed the child and we have failed the community. We have failed medicine.

Lachlan Dunjey 28 Oct, 2018.
Full Article:
“What is child abuse? the polarisation of medicine and medical defence organisations.” chooselifeaustralia.org.au

A note on the doctor/patient relationship “Why this Declaration?” conscienceinmedicine.net.au

The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem and the heavens are open to wide-eyed shepherds.
Sing, dance, exchange gifts and good wishes. Forgive, be at peace with one another. There is something bigger than ourselves.
The King of Kings is born in Bethlehem.

References   [ + ]

1. Déjà vu is the feeling that the situation currently being experienced has already been experienced in the past.

ETHICS: Counteracting the Trans Culture. Christian Parenting “ (The warfare against heteronormativity – male and female) 1 Nov

How To Respond To Your 7-Year-Old Boy Who Thinks He Might Be A Girl. Is the situation different from that of the second half of the 20th century in terms of the sexual culture? Yes, primarily then the culture was accepting of heteronormativity with “normal” sexual desires between “normal” male and female but seeking to make this a “free sex” culture, to hook-up with anyone you like free of consequences.

The contraceptive pill aided the illusion of free consequences. Abortion became a battleground of women’s rights and the baby was relegated to a piece of tissue that wasn’t – by any stretch of the imagination – really human (yes, stated openly in our national parliaments as recently as a decade ago).

At least masculinity and femininity were accepted and even (perversely) celebrated, and pornography became and continues to be a huge industry and battleground. Then came the flagrantly homosexual Mardi-Gras and families with children shared in the showtime.

And then came the Trojan horse of the Safe Schools Coalition of Australia, born as an anti-bullying program for schools and endorsed in our parliaments, despite the revelation that this was an indoctrination program to prematurely sexualise our children. It is still endorsed by party policies and still supported by people who still (!) vote for the MPs that support these policies.

The principal spokesperson for SSCA is on the public record – visually – as saying the program was not really about bullying but about eliminating heteronormativity.

The evils of the safe-schools program are on the public record but included is the permission and implied encouragement to find out what sexuality you are by allowing more than one virginity with more than one orifice with both male and female, that pregnancy can be avoided by using a different orifice, and that techniques and aids – including for “acceptable” masochistic sex – could be found on online helpfully linked, and we can show you how to avoid your parents discovering any of this.

So sexual experimentation was encouraged. Permission was given to “discover” whether you were heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual. Ultimately you could be whatever “gender” you liked despite your birth sex and physical anatomy (and genetics) along a spectrum of genders and that you could change your gender whenever you liked.

And somehow, when we were asleep, moves came to change our birth certificates to eliminate sex “assigned at birth” from the certificate. Also of course, substitution of mother and father with “Parent 1 and parent 2”. (How was it that such legislation has been passed and is still being pushed? Yes, it is and was by wilfully ignorant MPs who blindly supported the anti-discrimination logic of the LGBTI agenda.)

We warned our MPs and the public of the consequences of legalising same-sex marriage but we were told there were none, that this was a step that needed to be made to counter discrimination against same-sex attracted people and that legal safeguards would be introduced to protect freedom of speech, freedom to believe, freedom to teach and freedom to act and live accordingly in our culture and occupations.

And now we know these freedoms are under threat – despite international treaties that clearly state these rights.

What are the current specific battle fronts?

Premature sexualisation of our children has intensified through our schools, pre-schools and media but the two main fronts that we must now battle in our parliaments, in our schools, and in our homes “around the kitchen table” are

• our freedom to believe, speak, teach and live what we believe

• to be whatever gender you like – with all the lifetime consequences of this – with the accusation of being a child abuser if we do not affirm this process, ultimately with the threat of having children taken from us.

Why “around the kitchen table”? Because the stated sadness of the retiring president of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Professor Gillian Triggs, was that “you can say what you like around the kitchen table”, her regret being that the AHRC did not get this far in eliminating wrong teaching and discrimination. One would hope that she was joking but given the history and the serious responses of many commentators it would seem not.

So, what can we do? Yes, we must be a Voice. Yes, there have been many valiant Australian voices in this battle. We give honour to the many who have been at the forefront of this battle and the books that have been rapidly produced to educate us in this serious conflict of worldviews.

In our connections with the public, with our schools – state and private – we can all be a voice and in terms of informing and teaching in our churches and Sunday Schools and young people’s work it is essential to be involved.

But most of all we must win “around the kitchen table” in our homes, in our parenting.

We can be very grateful to Professor Gillian Triggs for highlighting this fundamental battleground focus against totalitarianism. This is where we must win for the sake of our children.

The rest of this short paper then is about what we model and what we teach “around the kitchen table” with an emphasis on transgenders.

OK, so what is needed – and for some was always there – over and above normal “good” Christian parenting? Over and above seeking for our children to grow in the “nurture and admonition” of the Lord? Over and above loving our children, spending time with them, teaching and memorising Scripture, praying with them, agonising with them in times of rejection or conflict with others?

In a word – Celebrate! Even with joy!

Celebrate creation, not just teach it and point out the magnificence of design and beauty and give thanks for it, but actually celebrate. Jump up and down and get excited about concepts of “irreducible complexity” and how God might have done it and the pleasure He had in doing it.

Celebrate the child, giving praise to God for the gift that He has given to us as well as the gifts He has given to the child and making him/her so special. Loving the child just as they are and who they were created to be, not just for what your child has done although we must give praise for that too – but for who your child is. Yes, jump up and down and get excited with your child giving the praise to God.

Affirm and celebrate purpose for your child in reading (and celebrating!) God’s word to us e.g. in Psalm 139.

Extol and celebrate the wonder of design in all of nature pointing all the time to the God who did it. Get excited about male and female and the reproduction – in kind – of the species. Get excited about your child’s boyhood or girlhood and that this was determined too. Celebrate masculinity and femininity

And in all of this and underlying it, Celebrate God, the Giver and Designer. The Beginning and the End. The Father of the Lord Jesus Christ who gave His life that we might live. Get excited – and stay excited – about this too with your child.

Celebrate and Teach Truth.

We should be certain in our own minds as to God’s truth so that we can effectively communicate this in our conversations and teaching and correcting if needed. The Creator genius made male and female. There is no biological spectrum.

Yes, there are spectrum’s of personality and character within these biological poles. Yes, we can celebrate the “tom-boy” freedom of the girl and admire and love her and fall “in love” with her but she will always be gloriously female – even in adulthood and the mother of a family. And we can appreciate and admire the sensitivity and gentleness of the male who can also have huge strength of character in putting wrongs right and leading our world. Thank God for these differences. Celebrate.

But to then classify these differences as being fluid or dynamic “genders” along a spectrum using such terms (believe it or not) as masculine and feminine (how weird is that when they are trying to neuter those terms) and then to reinforce (always, never to give light to the situation) these artificial constructs by “treating” with hormones or the amputation of sexual organs into – wait for it – the newly fixed pseudo-biological polar opposites of male and female is a mind-boggling exercise and an abuse.

When the situation is confused and when your two-year-old boy tells you that he is a girl, what are you going to say? Will you tell him that’s OK and that no one should tell him otherwise, or will you pick him up, love him and tell him he is welcome to like girl things and pretend at times he is a girl but that you love him as “your boy” and he will always be your boy and that you are so proud of him?

And when your six-year-old girl tells you that because she has so much fun with boys that she thinks – like the school teacher told her she could – she is really a boy, what are you going to say? Will you say “of course, that’s OK and you can continue to work that out for yourself” or will you say that you love your tom-boy little girl and you are so pleased she can do boy things and even think like a boy, but “you will always be my precious beautiful, wonderful little girl” and that she may even grow up into a beautiful queen and yet always be adventurous and mischievous in the way she can think.

And, as appropriate, point out the errors and false teaching that are around, that create confusion directly in opposition to God and finally, if needed, to be wary of rebelling against God’s Creation. Continue to pray openly and with your child about all such things

Appendix 1: A Disclaimer

I hope this short paper will be of use in stimulating discussion. Although I have talked in public – and many times in my 50 years in the consulting room – on parenting issues including “ A Safe Place for our Children ”, I do not pretend special authority in this area. We count ourselves fortunate in the family we have and thank God for His grace in helping us in the parenting journey. Our family backgrounds and our friends have been a part of this journey. Thank you, Lord.

I am also painfully aware that sometimes it seems no matter how “good” the loving Christian parenting is that children turn away from family, from Christian values, and from God. Yes, there may be family of origin background factors – even genetic – that we do not and should not pretend to understand (that being too hurtful), but sometimes we must just regard as a “mystery” and continue to pray for their salvation and welcoming into heaven where ultimate healing and restoration takes place. And pray with and support the parents.

Appendix 2: re celebration and feelings

OK, we all have (celebrate this too) different personalities. Some of us find it hard to overtly celebrate, yes, being thankful to God for His goodness and grace and love and expressing this continually – in our weakness – in word and song and in our writing but miss celebration, what I would call a more effusive declaration of praise and deliberate joy and excitation with the ability to transmit this sense to others.

Is this too hard? Is it possible for us of quiet personalities? Is it hypocritical to celebrate when we find it hard to feel it? No, praising our child, praising God, even celebration, are things we must do independent of feelings and as we do this – particularly in concert with others – so the feeling of joy may or may not also be restored.

There is quiet joy and there is effusive joy felt and experienced. Ultimately it may be as with Amy Carmichael “Joy is not jolliness; joy is not gush, but joy is acquiescence to God’s will”.  Or, as a free paraphrase of Psalm 84 vs.10, “I’d rather be here with You, my Lord and my God, in the valley, than anywhere else without You” – and celebrate even that. For further discussion of depression and joy see Understanding Depression – A Christian Perspective

Lachlan Dunjey 1 Nov 2018.

PS also see helpful article:

Fathers, sons, and the sexual revolution we really need” (mercatornet.com) particularly “Fathers, take back your sons.”

“”Counteracting the Trans Culture. Christian Parenting “…around the kitchen table”.” chooselifeaustralia.org.au

Lachlan Dunjey MBBS FRACGP DObstRCOG

Mobile: 0407 937 513

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