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Posts tagged ‘faith’

New brand of Christianity!


Many would have read the following passage from the New Testament:  Matthew chapter 17:

20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you shall say unto this mountain, Remove from here to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.

21But this kind goes not out but by prayer and fasting.

The above passage was when the disciples could not drive away the evil spirit from the boy, and Jesus stepped in and cured the boy. Thereafter Jesus’ disciples ask him WHY THEY WERE NOT ABLE TO DO WHAT JESUS SUCCEEDED IN DOING? 

The Godhood of Jesus is revealed in this passage, not because he succeeded where his disciples failed, but because Jesus says in unequivocal terms that it is the successful efforts of PRAYER &FASTING, which enables a human to perform such miracles. Secondly, Jesus doesn’t find fault with the father of the boy or worse still, even with the boy, but STATES THE INADEQUACIES IF HIS OWN DISCIPLES. 

Cut back and let us see some passages of Paul in I Corinthians chapter 11 verse 30 says thus:

For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep. 

James says this at Chapter 4:3:

Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

The first is a passage by the self declared Apostle and the latter passage is by probably the earthly sibling of Jesus, if not the one who was one of the Boanerges. 

In any case, both the pillars one of the Jerusalem and the other of the Gentiles points fingers at others instead of looking into themselves and spread fear, guilt and a sense of inadequacy in OTHERS. These “apostles” we’re constantly excavating reasons for either the sicknesses or the non-receipt of the things sought through prayers by the lay men! 

THAT WAS THE DIFFERENCE. In their eagerness in building the Church, they couldn’t continue the path of self purification through prayers and fasting! 

If anyone is eager to believe that Christianity is being used to purvey guilt and portray the laymen as inadequate only in the recent centuries, then they are terribly wrong. The process started immediately after Jesus’ death and resurrection! 

Christ did not make the other man’s faults or INADEQUACIES as his reasons for non curing. No doubt He was/is God, but He recommended His disciples to look into themselves and not to find Pretexts. 

That is/was and would be Christianity and not as what the disciples wrote with a misplaced fervour to build a Church! 

God save us from false preachers of Christianity. 

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Faith & Belief, in Chennai crumbles!


WOE UNTO THE WORLD BECAUSE OF OFFENCES, BUT WOE UNTO THE MAN THROUGH WHOM THE OFFENCE COMETH – Jesus.

The point which, as I understand of the verse today is that, there is no way we can eliminate ALL the problems of Life. But each individual through humility, skill and effort should do that which is required to be done to the best of his belief, ability and knowledge. The episode which I want to bring to focus is the crumbling of one of the Multi Storied Building(MSB) named FAITH and BELIEF, which crumbled trapping unnumbered humans in the city of Chennai in a locality called Moulivalkam. 

The number of floors  of each of the towers is 11 floors. One tower has fully collapsed- thankfully, the apartments had NOT been occupied. When scientific knowledge had not evolved to the extent, it was told: WISE is the man who built his house on the ROCK. A strong footing is essential to place a building so that the internal disturbances or the external vicissitudes do not impact a building to the extent of making it crumble. That is why we have SOIL TESTING and STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS. 

One doesn’t know the condition of the soil or the layers which lie beneath the surface and unless the soil is understood and suitable structure is raised one is sitting on a time-bomb – only thing is that when the TIME is or when that TIME would be triggered is NOT KNOWN. 

The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA), does not look into the soil report or the structural design of an MSB plan before approving it. Now that we are all wiser by hindsight, it is time that CMDA has its own soil testing and structural design engineers who would approve MSB projects for which interested parties submit their plan. 

The problem is that most of the MSBs are joint ventures, which means there are four interested parties: the land owner, the builder, the banker, and the buyer of an apartment. Except for the banker, none of them CAN wait. The builder wants to sell his share of the apartments and exit to the next project; the land-owner wants his share for possession and disposal of some apartments which fall to his share so that he could create liquidity; the buyer wants to occupy quickly or put it on rent: but the only person who is in no hurry is the BANKER who wants as much delay so that his interest component goes up or the builder defaults and the banker acquires a right in his share of the apartments for auction!

In this background, doing multiple soil testing, getting a proven structural engineer (who does not go by the builder’s request for keeping the cost low!) are the barest minimum. But in Chennai, because of the stable real estate prices, every tom, dick and harry who has land or liquidity has become a BUILDER without having either the diligence nor the knowledge to handle MSB projects. 

While sympathizing with those persons who have lost their near and dear ones and still hoping that they would be found ALIVE, it is time that the Tamil Nadu government legislated on the requirement of soil testing and thereafter doing the structural designing of the foundation, failing which the government would be encouraging the carpet baggers to become fly by night builders having NO social responsibility. The biggest problem that one faces with the FOUNDATION is that there is seldom any room for REVISITING the issues, primarily because, the problems do not show up before tragedy strikes.

 

JESUS & the Canaanite woman.


One of the passages of the Bible which had troubled me a lot during early adult years, was the passage found in Matthew chapter 15 verse 26. We as Christians are fed with a lot of  nice epithets like ‘loving’, ‘compassionate’, ‘non-judgmental’, ‘forgiving’  JESUS and suddenly the verse, “It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs”  hits an Indian Christian. Was Jesus truly sent for the lost sheep of Israel and not for the salvation of “MANKIND” as suggested by the disciples  after the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus? I reproduce the passage for better appreciation of the episode:-

21 Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon. 22 And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil. 23 But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. 24 But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25 Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. 26 But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. 27 And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. 28 Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.

Years of scrutiny has led me to the conclusion that THIS IS THE ONLY MIRACLE OF JESUS (WHILE IN FLESH) THAT TOOK PLACE IN WHICH, HIS WILL DID NOT COINCIDE WITH THE RELIEF SOUGHT AND OBTAINED. IF ONE ADVERTS TO THE MIRACLE, WHERE THE WOMAN WITH BLEEDING for 18 YEARS  GOT CURED, JESUS KNEW OF THE PASSAGE OF POWER THROUGH HIM. HE WAS UNAWARE TILL THEN that the woman touched the hem of his garment with the faith and intention to get cured.THEREFORE, THAT EPISODE SHOULD BE INTERPRETED AS THE ONE IN WHICH JESUS WAS NEUTRAL, BUT IN THE EPISODE OF THE CANAANITE WOMAN, HE WAS NOT MERELY RELUCTANT, HE WAS DOWNRIGHT AGAINST “WILLING” IN FAVOUR OF THE WOMAN’S REQUEST.

The beauty of this passage is that Jesus relents, as He knew that it is/was/will be HIS FATHER’S WILL, to be compassionate to the afflicted and grant relief, when fervently asked for,  even by the undeserving. Jesus says: O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt.

Jesus does not tell the leper whom he cured “be it unto thee even as thou wilt”, instead Jesus said,”I will; be thou clean!”( Mark 1:41)”. The difference is apparent and clear, in the case of the leper, he had lost his “faith” and needed the help of Jesus to restore that by “willing” for him, whereas in this episode, the Canaanite woman had a “faith” that amazed even Jesus. There is another miracle of Jesus in the episode of the Centurion’s servant  where Jesus was amazed, as excerpted below:-

Luke 7:1-10

Now when he had ended all his sayings in the audience of the people, he entered into Capernaum.2 And a certain centurion’s servant, who was dear unto him, was sick, and ready to die. 3 And when he heard of Jesus, he sent unto him the elders of the Jews, beseeching him that he would come and heal his servant. 4 And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this: 5 For he loveth our nation, and he hath built us a synagogue. 6 Then Jesus went with them. And when he was now not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself: for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof: 7 Wherefore neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee: but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed. 8 For I also am a man set under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. 9 When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 10 And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the servant whole that had been sick.

In the Centurion’s case Jesus was on His way to the Centurion’s house and he had obtained a good report from the elders of the Jewish synagogue, whereas, this Canaanite woman was a CANAANITE and starts off with an inherent disadvantage and is almost like Naaman, the Syrian, coming to Elisha (II Kings 5th chapter)  for cure of his leprosy. Yet her FAITH breaks the barrier of the Jewish mind that a Canaanite was a “dog”, and Jesus by this miracle breaks the barrier set by the Jews that the NON-JEWS (gentiles) were not to be a part of the SALVATION, to be  inducted by the MESSIAH.

IT IS THROUGH THIS MIRACLE THAT JESUS PROVES THAT,  FAITH MOVES MOUNTAINS and FAITH was beyond THE NORMAL PRINCIPLES OF SALVATION .

FAITH IS CAPABLE OF ALTERING THE VERY PRINCIPLES, THAT STOOD AS BARRIERS TO SALVATION.

There were instances where Jesus willed the cure of the afflicted (the leper who asked Jesus to will his cure), there were instances where Jesus agreed  with the request of the afflicted (water to wine, the blind man of Bartimaeus), there were instances where Jesus was moved with compassion (Widow of Nain’s dead son, the man with a legion of demons), there were instances where Jesus was moved by the request made by someone on behalf of  the afflicted (dead Lazarus, man with palsy sent thru opening the roof), there is at least one instance where Jesus was unaware till the cure was obtained by faith ( the woman with issue for 18 years) BUT this story of the CANAANITE woman is the only instance that this blogger knows of, where JESUS  accedes reluctantly to the woman’s request by saying:”be it unto thee even as thou wilt.”

THIS IS THE PASSAGE THAT SHOULD EMBOLDEN A NON-JEW (the so called “gentiles”) TO BELIEVE THAT FAITH IN JESUS IS SUFFICIENT, EVEN IF ALL THE OLD TESTAMENT PRINCIPLES WERE RANGED AGAINST GENTILES. EVEN JESUS HAD TO RELENT WHEN HE SAW THE FAITH OF THE UNDESERVING GENTILE CANAANITE WOMAN.

PAUL WAS RIGHT AFTER ALL!!

FAITH!


The guy , who gave ‘FAITH’ the spectrum of meanings  possible for that one apparently simple word, if sighted by me, and if i am empowered to deal with him the way that i’d like to (of course without sin & guilt), i would torture him so gradually that i would feed him with all the posited meanings of the word FAITH and keep him in perpetual torture that he would forget FAITH and understand the meaning of the word MERCY!

He would beg for MERCY and give up on his illusory FAITH!!

FAITH in what? on whom? of what? till when? for what? It has become the greatest IDEA of preservation of a personal ILLUSION.

“Faith could move mountains.”

If the mountains didn’t exist to start with, Faith can still make one believe that the mountains existed and that they were removed by Faith & therefore they don’t exist now!!!

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