Secular Success vs. Christian Success

Philonous

Sparrow
Birds.

Ever hear of “The Snow Goose”?

The Snow Goose is what you used to have to read for remedial summer school in Baltimore County after you failed “English”, which is what I did in 9th grade (early 1980s).


It was a “tearjerker story” written in 1940 by Paul Gallico, published later that year. “Philip Rhayader” is an ugly hunchback artist/sailor living by himself in an abandoned lighthouse in the British Isles. When some hunters shoot down a snow goose over the lighthouse, he chases them away and tries to mend the injured bird. A young girl named “Fritha” joins him in this experiment, and they become friends.

WWII breaks out right around the time Fritha is coming of age.

Also, the snow goose, now mended, makes a habit of revisiting the lighthouse on its migration routes each year, thereby drawing Fritha back to Rhayader. She’s the only friend he has.

Anyhow, once the Nazis invade France the allied soldiers have to immediately be ferried off the coast of Dunkirk, and this demands all boats, including civilian craft. And so Rhayader participates in this and becomes a hero. Yet after saving several hundred men on repeat voyages his sailboat gets shelled and he drowns, at which point Fritha has realized she has come to love him. The story ends.

Not much, but I could write a report on it, and it got me into 10th grade.

That was also the summer I decided I wanted my own life’s vocation to be that of “freelance artist”. I decided this upon realizing I could not master the guitar well enough to ever hope to cut it as a musician (“rock star” being my life’s primary goal). I had no musical ear; I couldn’t pick out notes from chords. But I could draw anything I saw.

So I started my first oil painting with a set of paints my mother bought for herself with the one class she took at Maryland Institute back in the 1970’s. It was a painting of…Randy Rhoads, Ozzy Osbourne’s late guitarist.

Unlike me, Randy Rhoads had no problem picking-out notes from chords—or building chords—or understanding gobs of music theory. Because of this—and a handful of opportunities that came his way—he was a skinny white guy getting laid every night, whereas I was a skinny white guy with…“imaginative yearnings”.

And so I got started on painting Randy onstage w/ his yellow Les Paul and his red leather tights. The guitar and tights were easy—yellow and red. The black stage background was black. The strings weren’t so easy—all my mother had were bristle brushes, and the rough surface of the cheap Fredrix canvas-board wasn’t conducive to straight lines.

No matter. I’d go with what I know. Work on the hands and body—I was good with things like that.

But then there was the problem of the face.

Thing is, even though I worshipped him as a god, without makeup Randy didn’t look too facially different from me—nor visa-versa. That didn’t seem right. He had died a legend at age 25; I was a nobody. But aside from me having a bulbous nose and thick glasses, there really wasn’t much difference in our appearance.

And so that sort of bummed me out. Why am I painting myself?

And on the heels of that, a more troubling revelation:

Could it be my cultural “heroes” aren’t what I think?

Yes. They could indeed be very different. Yet it would take me about 30 more years’ living before I had the sophistication to realize just how true this was.

The Jews who owned the big media companies didn’t want western youth getting down with colorful public expressions of nationalism they way they did in Germany and Italy—they way they did in all nations; similarly, they weren’t too big on expressions of Christianity in any form. But with Elvis came a sort of dance music that often drifted into unchristian raunchiness, and was just as preoccupied with lyrics of “love” that could mean anything (fertility ceremonies).

And lo—here’s rock’s biggest pagan himself—Ozzy with his Nietzsche/Thelema/Blavatsky/Aspergers—and no fan of patriotism, having been born into Britain’s throwaway caste—and so he’s perfect for philosophy nerds like me from America’s blue collar underbelly. Yet everything about his lyrics centers on uncertainty and self-absorption—good for a life of making oneself mental hospital fodder.

Long story short, I never finished the Randy Rhoads portrait, and five years later my own life’s circumstances forced me into America’s wage-working ranks—sort of where I expected to end up all along. And now in my 50’s I’m finally going back to oil painting (albeit with utterly no desire to paint pop culture icons).

And the Paul Gallico story.

Well, what astonishes me now is that through today’s cultural lens there’d be no way to avoid reading “pedophilia” into something like that. Yet there’s no sex in the story—Gallico had no interest in sexualizing either character. It was just an ideal romance.
 
I love you Roosh as a brother in Christ. We know you have been John 3:3’d. We can know a tree by its fruit, Roosh, you are bearing fruit in keeping with repentance. If you were to fall away and renounce the faith John also tells us you were never of us.

Now, we discern… does this professing Christian bear fruit? Is this Christian turning from sin, a new creation? Has he or she been Ezekiel 36’d? Have they been given a new heart with His law written on their hearts causing them to walk in His statutes? Do we hate, HATE the sin we once loved? In private do we wish to be Holy and do what is right in the sight of God? When you spoke of your conversion you were once one way, now you are another. You now believe Jesus is the Son of God. Many will say on that day “Lord, Lord, haven’t we cast out demons and done many good works in your name, and He will say to them ‘get away from me ou workers of inequity, I never knew you.’”

Jesus PROMISES us that “ALL that the Father has given to Me will come, and I will lose no one but raise them up on the last day.” That is a very clear promise from Christ. So if you came to Christ and you were given the seal of your salvation, the Holy Spirit, that’s a promise from God that you are His! “No one can snatch you from His hands.” He is the good Shepherd.

He told us MANY will profess His name. But we take our warning versus seriously, are we in the faith? Meaning, had God truly done a work in our hearts bc if God started it He WILL finish it, it’s a promise and God cannot lie. This IS the New Covenant.

When we read the OT we are presented with God’s character. The covenant God had with Israel wasn’t one of eternal life in Heaven or else Jesus wouldn’t have ever condemned anyone? No, it was just exactly what God promised. Read it in Genesis and the Torah. The Jews could see a promise to come and many thought eternal life, but many didn’t? See Jesus answer to the Sadducees and Pharisees.

Reading Acts and the Epistles you constantly see the need to constantly correct error. So to suggest after Jude everything was settled and there was no more false doctrine is disingenuous at best, no?

Paul is VERY clear on what is and what is not eternal security. It is followed up in James’ epistle saying (paraphrasing) “ok, you claim to be a Son of God but you’re acting like demons?! You have not been saved, you are a rebel against God and a liar.”

But Roosh! You are secure. God wants you to know that! He wants you to feel free to just love Him with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength.” Jesus says, “if you love me then keep my commands.”

God knows the Law is death, Paul tells us. Because if the God I know that pulled me out of my sin. Dead in Sin. I now love Him more than anything in this World. Oh how we long to be with Christ! But we wait. But we are not waiting to “prove” our love to God. He is all knowing. He knows our hearts. He cannot know everything and then not know what we will do. It’s a violation of His logic, the law of non-contradiction.

In short, yes, we are ALWAYS repenting bc it is proof to us of the Holy Spirit working in our hearts. And to the outside world. If a church looks apostate turning the Grace of God into lasciviousness then it is apostate. Period. But on a side note, what if we place our Church made by hands above the Word of God? Then we have no authority to say it is apostate? The Catholics have an issue here? If the Pope is the Authority and we see his edicts are contrary to Scripture then how do we say “No! The Vaccine is NOT a pass to Heaven.” Under the Catholic Church made up of sinful humans the Catholic cannot say “No, Sorcery (pharmakia) is a sin” - Galatians 5:20. See how that works guys, not being patronizing at all, just hear me out. God’s Word is perfect. We can debate Hebrew and Greek grammar, but it is perfect. And no council decided what was and wasn’t scripture, they affirmed what all the churches agreed on, but there was VERY little debate at all. Not only that but Jesus Himself always appealed to God’s Word. But I digress…

***If I can lose God’s love whilst still loving Him, as a Born Again believer, you could never forget the work He did in your heart just like on Pentecost. That is the SAME Spirit. Never once did the Apostles say “welp? Let’s hope you can keep this?”

If a TRULY born again REALLY believed He or she could lose their salvation they would be just like Luther, unable to even function!

If I didn’t believe that “He who began a good work in me will complete it…” I would have to spend every second of every day on my forehead asking forgiveness for thinking of lunch while I prayed. I’d be just like Luther, I’d be sleeping in the confession booth waiting for absolution from someone Jesus said to never call another human on earth. I would be praying to sinful humans for the intercession ONLY CHRIST can do. Christ is the ONLY intercessor between the Father and man. That is the point! And it’s SO BEAUTIFUL gentlemen. So beautiful a salvation is this.

Read Romans, read it again, and again, then Galatians, then Romans, then Galatians, and repeat. You’ll NEVER be the same.
I pray all believers are able to live in complete love and security In their salvation. No, it isn’t good for large organizations because you’ll always have false converts, and sadly, and this is just my opinion, I feel like a lot of doctrine has evolved away from Paul’s Gospel in an effort to say “well, he says he believes? But he hasn’t ever had a testimony? Well, that’s bc it’s not true. What we read in Acts with the Apostles seeing the Spirit in gentiles was just…” what? It was exactly what it was.

if Roosh were to look at where he was upon first believing and where he is now with respect to his righteousness he’ll see a huge profession. But that’s the Spirit working through Roosh, we are seeing it all real time!

“…lest any man should boast.” If we are boasting of our own righteousness we are boasting. No, All Glory to God for sanctificying me with His Spirit.

If I could lose His love I would have a long time ago. It’s not a “He loves me he loves me not” kind of covenant. Israel wasn’t given the New Covenant in the Old Testament, this is why I think dispensationalism is SUCH horrific error in the West. God met all of His promises to Israel, but the new Covenant is different. It’s eternal, meaning FOREVER. If I can lose it it’s not eternal.

I have to assume Roosh believes that deep down bc if we don’t understand the holiness of God, and the HORRIFIC nature of even the slightest sin we don’t understand how incredible this promise is. We sin more in our minds in anger in one day to justify eternal eternities of Hell. BUT, bc we believe in Him who is accepted our sin debt for those whom the Father gave Him on the Cross, past, present, and future; for God knew every sin you would commit before you’ve even existed.

Yet Christ paid it all. Tetelestai! The Debt is paid, what debt? The debt of the believer. In full. Not partially. And to suggest that the atonement if the Son was ever going to be ineffectual Is TERRIFYING. No, what God does God does.

If we don’t trust that He will keep us, those called with new hearts then we GRAVELY underestimate the severity of our sin… Our love for God and Gods law is what assures us of this.

If you claim to be a Christian yet live like the World you are NOT a Christian. We are set apart. Why? Bc He loves us and is cleaning us up through His Grace and Spirit.

So discern? Does your sin hurt your heart? Do you feel like you’ve committed cosmic treason? Then you might be a Christian. If you know, like Paul, Christ is ours forever and if we think we can go out and sin then are insane and the love of the Father is nit in us. Full Stop.

Rest in His love, and love Him through prayer, thanksgiving, fellowship, and good works. Why? Bc He loved us first. And we can’t help but love Him now!

If that doesn’t make sense, that kind of love then do you really know the love of Christ? If not, pray, read, read, pray, every day! Pray for God to show Himself! If you want Him it’s because He put it in your heart, now follow your heart and chase Him and dont stop, if you do… be afraid.
 
I love you Roosh as a brother in Christ. We know you have been John 3:3’d. We can know a tree by its fruit, Roosh, you are bearing fruit in keeping with repentance. If you were to fall away and renounce the faith John also tells us you were never of us.

Now, we discern… does this professing Christian bear fruit? Is this Christian turning from sin, a new creation? Has he or she been Ezekiel 36’d? Have they been given a new heart with His law written on their hearts causing them to walk in His statutes? Do we hate, HATE the sin we once loved? In private do we wish to be Holy and do what is right in the sight of God? When you spoke of your conversion you were once one way, now you are another. You now believe Jesus is the Son of God. Many will say on that day “Lord, Lord, haven’t we cast out demons and done many good works in your name, and He will say to them ‘get away from me ou workers of inequity, I never knew you.’”

Jesus PROMISES us that “ALL that the Father has given to Me will come, and I will lose no one but raise them up on the last day.” That is a very clear promise from Christ. So if you came to Christ and you were given the seal of your salvation, the Holy Spirit, that’s a promise from God that you are His! “No one can snatch you from His hands.” He is the good Shepherd.

He told us MANY will profess His name. But we take our warning versus seriously, are we in the faith? Meaning, had God truly done a work in our hearts bc if God started it He WILL finish it, it’s a promise and God cannot lie. This IS the New Covenant.

When we read the OT we are presented with God’s character. The covenant God had with Israel wasn’t one of eternal life in Heaven or else Jesus wouldn’t have ever condemned anyone? No, it was just exactly what God promised. Read it in Genesis and the Torah. The Jews could see a promise to come and many thought eternal life, but many didn’t? See Jesus answer to the Sadducees and Pharisees.

Reading Acts and the Epistles you constantly see the need to constantly correct error. So to suggest after Jude everything was settled and there was no more false doctrine is disingenuous at best, no?

Paul is VERY clear on what is and what is not eternal security. It is followed up in James’ epistle saying (paraphrasing) “ok, you claim to be a Son of God but you’re acting like demons?! You have not been saved, you are a rebel against God and a liar.”

But Roosh! You are secure. God wants you to know that! He wants you to feel free to just love Him with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength.” Jesus says, “if you love me then keep my commands.”

God knows the Law is death, Paul tells us. Because if the God I know that pulled me out of my sin. Dead in Sin. I now love Him more than anything in this World. Oh how we long to be with Christ! But we wait. But we are not waiting to “prove” our love to God. He is all knowing. He knows our hearts. He cannot know everything and then not know what we will do. It’s a violation of His logic, the law of non-contradiction.

In short, yes, we are ALWAYS repenting bc it is proof to us of the Holy Spirit working in our hearts. And to the outside world. If a church looks apostate turning the Grace of God into lasciviousness then it is apostate. Period. But on a side note, what if we place our Church made by hands above the Word of God? Then we have no authority to say it is apostate? The Catholics have an issue here? If the Pope is the Authority and we see his edicts are contrary to Scripture then how do we say “No! The Vaccine is NOT a pass to Heaven.” Under the Catholic Church made up of sinful humans the Catholic cannot say “No, Sorcery (pharmakia) is a sin” - Galatians 5:20. See how that works guys, not being patronizing at all, just hear me out. God’s Word is perfect. We can debate Hebrew and Greek grammar, but it is perfect. And no council decided what was and wasn’t scripture, they affirmed what all the churches agreed on, but there was VERY little debate at all. Not only that but Jesus Himself always appealed to God’s Word. But I digress…

***If I can lose God’s love whilst still loving Him, as a Born Again believer, you could never forget the work He did in your heart just like on Pentecost. That is the SAME Spirit. Never once did the Apostles say “welp? Let’s hope you can keep this?”

If a TRULY born again REALLY believed He or she could lose their salvation they would be just like Luther, unable to even function!

If I didn’t believe that “He who began a good work in me will complete it…” I would have to spend every second of every day on my forehead asking forgiveness for thinking of lunch while I prayed. I’d be just like Luther, I’d be sleeping in the confession booth waiting for absolution from someone Jesus said to never call another human on earth. I would be praying to sinful humans for the intercession ONLY CHRIST can do. Christ is the ONLY intercessor between the Father and man. That is the point! And it’s SO BEAUTIFUL gentlemen. So beautiful a salvation is this.

Read Romans, read it again, and again, then Galatians, then Romans, then Galatians, and repeat. You’ll NEVER be the same.
I pray all believers are able to live in complete love and security In their salvation. No, it isn’t good for large organizations because you’ll always have false converts, and sadly, and this is just my opinion, I feel like a lot of doctrine has evolved away from Paul’s Gospel in an effort to say “well, he says he believes? But he hasn’t ever had a testimony? Well, that’s bc it’s not true. What we read in Acts with the Apostles seeing the Spirit in gentiles was just…” what? It was exactly what it was.

if Roosh were to look at where he was upon first believing and where he is now with respect to his righteousness he’ll see a huge profession. But that’s the Spirit working through Roosh, we are seeing it all real time!

“…lest any man should boast.” If we are boasting of our own righteousness we are boasting. No, All Glory to God for sanctificying me with His Spirit.

If I could lose His love I would have a long time ago. It’s not a “He loves me he loves me not” kind of covenant. Israel wasn’t given the New Covenant in the Old Testament, this is why I think dispensationalism is SUCH horrific error in the West. God met all of His promises to Israel, but the new Covenant is different. It’s eternal, meaning FOREVER. If I can lose it it’s not eternal.

I have to assume Roosh believes that deep down bc if we don’t understand the holiness of God, and the HORRIFIC nature of even the slightest sin we don’t understand how incredible this promise is. We sin more in our minds in anger in one day to justify eternal eternities of Hell. BUT, bc we believe in Him who is accepted our sin debt for those whom the Father gave Him on the Cross, past, present, and future; for God knew every sin you would commit before you’ve even existed.

Yet Christ paid it all. Tetelestai! The Debt is paid, what debt? The debt of the believer. In full. Not partially. And to suggest that the atonement if the Son was ever going to be ineffectual Is TERRIFYING. No, what God does God does.

If we don’t trust that He will keep us, those called with new hearts then we GRAVELY underestimate the severity of our sin… Our love for God and Gods law is what assures us of this.

If you claim to be a Christian yet live like the World you are NOT a Christian. We are set apart. Why? Bc He loves us and is cleaning us up through His Grace and Spirit.

So discern? Does your sin hurt your heart? Do you feel like you’ve committed cosmic treason? Then you might be a Christian. If you know, like Paul, Christ is ours forever and if we think we can go out and sin then are insane and the love of the Father is nit in us. Full Stop.

Rest in His love, and love Him through prayer, thanksgiving, fellowship, and good works. Why? Bc He loved us first. And we can’t help but love Him now!

If that doesn’t make sense, that kind of love then do you really know the love of Christ? If not, pray, read, read, pray, every day! Pray for God to show Himself! If you want Him it’s because He put it in your heart, now follow your heart and chase Him and dont stop, if you do… be afraid.
And just in case it matters; “Protestant”’is not a denomination. Reformed would be the BEST way to describe what we are. Any denomination that doesn’t hold to the 5 Sola’s we would not consider Reformed. They would’ve been cults or secular religions branching off of Reformed Doctrine, but if you claim to be of the Reformation but do not teach Biblical authority ie female pastors or LGBT stuff… then you are NOT Reformed and not Christian. Period. Anyone can say they are “Christian” they can even say they are Catholic or “Eastern Orthodox,” but just as Roosh has found with many, if they don’t follow the doctrine laid out then it isn’t what they are claiming. It’s like being Trans. If I’m a Reformed Baptist Church with a gay flag I’m NOT Baptist, even if the convention says so. Reformed Christianity is what the reformers called Orthodox, all of the Ecumenical councils affirmed it. If we follow the History of the Church after John and Paul we can follow the consistent statements of faith and upholding of Biblical authority.

We HATE what the American church has become, but there’s a GREAT BOOK: “Sacred Conviction” which lays out how the Civil War was really the Beginning of what we are seeing in the West as the apostate Church, and to disregard the fruit of the Puritans before the War is doing a serious injustice to those heroes of the Faith following Christ’s command to bring the Gospel to the nations. With revivals and awakenings unlike we’ve seen since Acts.

SINNERS IN THE HANDS OF AN ANGRY GOD - Johnathan Edwards will give you an idea how seriously Reformed Christians take sin. Take a listen. It’ll convict you to your knees.

Charles Spurgeon with the Spirit of God was the ONLY thing stopping Communism from rooting in England? How could a healthy church in Russia allow such an abomination? It’s bc God doesn’t dwell in Temples made by human hands. But don’t get it twisted, we are VERY serious about church discipline and ecclesiastical issues in the Church, it is ANYTHING but “my Bible and me” as the Bible commands the meeting of ourselves. We are to do life together like the Puritans, the Church is the Body of Christ, living together in but not of the World, according to scripture that is. You’ll obviously feel differently if you’re of another background.

I just really don’t think most ppl understand the Reformation, even many who think themselves reformed. I’d love to speak with a Catholic or Eastern Orthodox about their faith but in Texas, with all the Catholics, I can’t get any answers? Everyone believes something different, it would seem as though there are just as many Catholic denominations as any other? But they claim to have Papal Authority? So why are they not getting the Pope’s memos? I say that in jest, I feel like it’s because like all of us, we know SCRIPTURE is the final authority. And that I love. I truly believe no matter what we say when we must, we all appeal to scripture.
 
"The Catholics have an issue here? If the Pope is the Authority and we see his edicts are contrary to Scripture then how do we say “No! The Vaccine is NOT a pass to Heaven.”

The Pope is only infallible concerning matters of faith and morals. The Pope has expressed his opinion regarding the COVID-19 vaccines. The Pope is not speaking ex cathedra - it's only his OPINION!

"I would be praying to sinful humans for the intercession ONLY CHRIST can do. Christ is the ONLY intercessor between the Father and man"

Please read the text again - Jesus is the only MEDIATOR between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5). Have you ever prayed for another person? If so, then you are an INTECESSOR! You are interceding for them with your prayers.

"If I could lose His love I would have a long time ago. It’s not a “He loves me he loves me not” kind of covenant. Israel wasn’t given the New Covenant in the Old Testament, this is why I think dispensationalism is SUCH horrific error in the West. God met all of His promises to Israel, but the new Covenant is different. It’s eternal, meaning FOREVER. If I can lose it it’s not eternal"

God loves us unconditionally. God is merciful, however, God is also just. God never stops loving us, however, we have to respond to God's love. When I sin I reject God - HE doesn't reject me.

" I’d be just like Luther, I’d be sleeping in the confession booth waiting for absolution from someone Jesus said to never call another human on earth"

Protestants take Matthew 23:9 out of context. https://www.catholic.com/tract/call-no-man-father
 

Roosh

Cardinal
Orthodox
You are secure. God wants you to know that!
This is not what the Orthodox Church teaches. Thinking you are secure of your salvation is a fatal deception.

Remember that this is an Orthodox forum. Views that stand against Orthodoxy will be tolerated only up to a limit that it may deceive others.
 

messaggera

Kingfisher
Woman
worldly success always revolves around a material gain or achievement while Christian success revolves around a spiritual gain that benefits a person’s soul

Moral Development - Younger Ages.

Intrinsic vs. External Development

As most would agree the public system today is disastrous with moral character development, and embraces external incentive development. Parochial schools use to use a demerit system for classroom behaviour management opposed to the typical incentive award system found in the public schools.

The comparison behaviours between the two different systems impact character development. Character development directors the growth of morals through cultivating intrinsic incentives; as where external incentive development rewards behaviours through material gain.

We have a generation of individuals who are a product of external incentive development (material gain) instead of a disciple system that allows a child to take accountability of individual behaviours; and to perform out of self interest (spiritual gain that benefits a person’s soul).

There are teachers and parents who will use external incentives to manipulate behaviours because it is easier to manage the undesired behaviours. Was talking to a mother who volunteers in a school. She told me the story of a child who she tutors. She said that the student will not complete a task or an activity without receiving a reward; and what is more disturbing is that the child asked what will he receive as a reward when the request was completed. Not only is this disobedient, but the child has already developed a behaviour that requires achievement through material gain.

Would be interested to hear a rebuttal to this argument: External incentive development rewards unhealthy behaviours through material gain rather than teaching character development.
 

Liviu

Sparrow
Orthodox
We need much less (related to this world) than the world tells us that we need.

Saint John Chrysostom said that the currency of the Kingdom of Heaven is God`s grace so the real rich people are the people rich in grace of God. As currency of this world allows the owners of it to do a lot of things in this world so the owners of God`s grace can do many things still from this world but not only. That`s the tresure our Lord Christ tell us to look for exchanging all this world treasures for it.

Saint John Chrysostom says , on the other hand , to not let ourselves impressed by the rich people of this world because they are like some poor actors who play rich people but when the play is over they are poor again.

Saint Paisios Aghioritis (1924 - 1994) said:

`In heaven some have a thimble of grace, others a cup, others a bucket, others a barrel and others a basin of
grace`
 

SeaEagle

Pigeon
I can't stomach forking over my hard earned money to the state via taxes just to participate in a rat race. I've learned from a young age that material joy is fleeting and unbecoming.

I was big into the DIY punk scene when I was younger. They got this idea from somewhere, likely subconsciously from Christian upbringings. Bits of truth seem hidden everywhere!
 
Top