Wednesday, August 13, 2014


Is it by choice that we seek to settle the question of who we are in  relationship to a Sovereign Creator?  King Solomon wrote: He has also set eternity in the hearts of man (Ecclesiastes 3: 11a). 

Settling this question, even when a person decides by default to deny the existence of God, is an imperative of the human design as embedded in our physicality as the operational need  for oxygen. Erich Fromm believed that freedom (that God-given right of free will) was a source of conflict for all human beings.  On the one hand we need freedom and long for it on many levels.  On the other, the infantile core of who we are, drives some to reject personal freedom and by our choices we narrow our world.  Embracing freedom is healthy.  Contriving life events that constrain freedom through the use of escape mechanisms is the root of what makes us unhealthy. Fear of death, that we must face the inevitable decay of our bodies and believe this is inherently unfair, moves us toward settling this question of who God is.    

 For mysterious reasons we cannot fully comprehend, Planet Earth is ground zero for God's plan to play out in great complexity; past, present, and future. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit decided to reveal themselves; that humanity would know and be known by God.  This was not going to be possible without freedom; the ability for human beings to make decisions for themselves, to self-determine a course of action.  God placed a homing device in the hearts of man.  That homing device is the stamp of eternity - where we came from and where we will end up - hopefully in His glorious presence.  By this imperative there are two basic choices. 
The first choice is to escape the vagaries and anxiety of the unknown. Facing the unknown is to accept the responsibilities of freedom. The mystery of what we don't know is anxiety provoking and we are repeatedly and in many ways invited to run from this imperative, to numb, deny, and construct an alternate reality.  And yet, the very core of who we are, how we were designed, calls us to recognize the conscious and subconscious need for answers.  In every sense it is a kind of responsibility we cannot escape - to reconcile, to the best of our limited ability, the inevitable end of physical life; death and decay.  As we should, we are offended by death.  Evil is to constrain life.  For life to be fully engaged our Creator bequeathed us, by right and  design, certain life-faculties.  These are autonomy, mobility, free will, sentience, awareness, the ability to grow, learn from our mistakes and acquire knowledge.  Only by God's grace does knowledge become wisdom.

So... our first choice is to run from freedom.  To ignore the great mystery of the unknown that invites us to grow.  Who is God?  If we decide we can have God on our terms, a God of our own making, we have created an alternate reality that narrows life and denies the mystery.          

The second is to embrace the unknown.  To recognize that there is a vast dimensional universe which co-exists with ours and which prayer impacts.  And... there are specific places called heaven and hell.  But we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal (2nd Corinthians 4: 18).  

We do not turn and run from the mystery.  We draw near to Jesus Christ even though much of what we know from the hurts of life, all the bitter reality of physical death and decay, may tell us that doing so isn't safe.  Embracing Jesus Christ by faith means that the mystery of what we don't know and can't quantify deepens and opens us; providing a peace that transcends the physical. 

Describing the angst of this dynamic the Psalmist comes to understand.  You have enclosed me behind and before, and laid your hand upon me.  Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it (Psalm 139: 5, 6).   
In the legalistic first we will adopt the form of a religion or perhaps we'll construct a kind of philosophy for navigating the unknowns of life. We fabricate a reality that tells us we will have answers that will sustain us toward the great unknowns of life after death - eternity. We would be wrong. 
In the later choice God's Son, Jesus Christ, adopts us for the very reason that we are willing to draw near to God, opening our hearts to the mystery of what we don't know and discovering a  personal and authentic relationship.  We move from crisis to knowledge.  From knowledge to wonder - revelation, sharper intuition and personal insight being willing to let His word and His presence challenge us, to change us, even when doing so makes us uncomfortable.  We are not embracing... rather we are embraced by the wonder, the manifestation, the mystery of God's love.  We let go and let God - experiencing His love because He first loved us.  We receive His gifts, and find that many times we are mercy zapped by the wonder that can't, for now, be fully understood.  Therefore, having been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God (Romans 5: 1, 2).    
As part of God's grand design, because grace is not possible without it, He gave us the gift to self-determine a course of action.  Even as evil seeks to enslave mankind, and we see this all about us, God guards free will and the internal filters, the guarding and checking mechanisms, that allow us to use critical thinking skills in defense of life and goodness.  In defense of the weak and the beleaguered we pray for healing; for a restoration of these necessary working attributes in those who have suffered the loss of them.  This defining empathy draws each to embrace ministry. We see that on many fronts strongholds are given over to evil and that God's goodness is the invader, the vanquisher of evil.  We take up arms.  We act.  We devote ourselves to intercessory prayer and all the while God loves and teaches us to love.     

Regardless of any "religious label" where choice and autonomy is constrained, what is experienced is the counterfeit. Father God is about setting us free from the slavery of sin and death and for this He sent His son, Jesus Christ into the world that by Him, we may have eternal life as we step into the mystery of what we don't know.  Any family, person, system or government that steels personal autonomy, attempts to destroy liberty, freedom of thought; those God-given human attributes.  These actions are evil.  Satan wants none of God's vanquishing power to work through faithful believers, inclined to pick up the torch, shinning truth into dark places.  In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.  The Light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not comprehend it (John 1: 5).   
Scripture identifies believers as aliens on planet earth.  The church militant is the invader. Evil is the facilitator and the perpetrator, building toxic strongholds whose aim is victimization, toxic power, early death, wars etc.  Cast from heaven after the war in heaven satan is almost surprised to find itself on planet earth "ground zero" - and the Bible describes this war. 
And there was war in heaven, Michael and his angels waging war with the dragon.  The dragon and his angels waged war, and they were not strong enough, and there was no longer a place found for them in heaven.  And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him (Revelation 12: 7-9). 
And when the dragon saw that he was thrown down to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male child...  (Revelation 12: 13)
Landing on planet earth was not the destination that Satan expected when he first lay the groundwork for demonic  rebellion.  Satan's massive ego told him he could be God; in fact had every right to be God.  But since this fallen angel is a created being, like us, this was never possible revealing the depth and degree of sins delusion.  We are told that a third of the angels rebelled with Satan and were cast to earth with him.   

Those good angels that won this war play three roles and are organized by God into troops and armies.  They are warriors, ministering / protecting angels, and lastly messenger angels.  The angels who won this war in heaven far outnumber those that fell to earth in a very changed condition. What a rude awakening.  It's important to remember that satan and these fallen angels rebelled amid the perfection of heaven; being in the presence of God.  When we rebel it is an entirely different scenario since we can only guess at what will be missed if we fail to love and trust Jesus Christ.  For this reason Jesus stands ready and willing to receive us when we turn to Him in repentance, desiring to know Him.   For whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10: 13).   

Because this war, transferred to Earth is still going on, God's army of angels are actively engaged on the side of human beings. These good angels, doing the will of God and under His rule and assignment, are sent forth for our benefit.  Speaking of believers in relationship to angels the author of Hebrews asked the rhetorical question.  Are they not all ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who inherit salvation? (Hebrews 1: 14).  And of the angels He says; Who makes His angels winds, and His ministers a flame of fire (Hebrews 1: 7). For He will give His angels charge over you to guard you in all your ways (Psalm 91: 11).   It's okay to ask God to send these angels to help you in whatever conflict you are engaged in.  We don't pray to angels, but it is perfectly okay to ask the Lord Jesus Christ for this specific kind of help.  Though we are in this war, we prefer peace, and pray for peace. (Psalm 120)    
We don't know when this war in heaven exactly happened.  It would have taken place before Genesis chapter three.  We can deduce this because, when we are first introduced to satan in the clash between good and evil, for the hearts and souls of mankind he is already in the Garden working to snare Eve by temptation and entrap Adam by greed and pride.  Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made.  And he said to the woman...  (Genesis 3: 1, 2a).   
Satan will ultimately fail.  Let's not forget.  Every day, in countless ways and by numerous means, by divine calling and eternal right, men, women and children fight battles and win.  God's Light overcomes the darkness.  In the film, God's not Dead, I loved seeing the list of cases that Christian college students filed and won when they were denied free speech rights on campuses across this country. In the context of how this war is waged and won through believers there is a varied fabric that is each, according to calling and geography, what is learned from experiential suffering and loss, in the exercise of talents and gifts, in the fight to overcome at multiple levels and circumstances - each and every role is equally valid. God is creative... we need only look into the faces of a crowd to guess how much He loves diversity.  There are commonalities, but each face is different. How does he do this?  I want to ask when I get to heaven.    
The basic fear script, perhaps all fear, centers on powerlessness over the physical death of the body.   
Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil (Hebrews 2: 14). 
And a verse I stand on in deliverance. 
Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.  Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2: 5-11). 
About our conflicts on Planet Earth and how we might respond to them in courage and with character, I like what J.R.R. Tolkien wrote in his book: Return of the King.  I like to be reminded of this valuable point made by a talented writer who let us see his humanity in what was poured into his work.   
"It is not our part to master all the tides of the world, but to do what is in us for the succor of those years wherein we are set, up-rooting the evil in the fields that we know, so that those who live after may have clean earth to till.  What weather they shall have is not ours to rule."  J.R.R. Tolkien. 

I like to close with a verse.  So many of you are in countries that experience turmoil and so I imagine you might not have a Bible handy.  For this reason I try and put an entire passage in place in the knowledge that God's word has the power to heal and nourish your heart.  God bless all of you; now over 90,000; most in the last two years.  I may not meet you in this life, but I'll see you in that glorious place called heaven where no tear ever falls.  We love Jesus!  And so together, we'll rejoice. 
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.  Be of sober spirit, be on the alert.  Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour.  But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.  After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.  To Him be dominion forever and ever.  Amen (1st Peter 5: 6-11). 

Another Blog that might hold some interest...
Books by, Alexandra Clair.
For download on Nook and Kindle; soft cover Amazon
WOOD'S END (fiction)
THE YEAR BETWEEN THE WOOD (sequel to Wood's End)
DISCERNING SPIRITS: Visionary Gifts in Practice 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

HEAVEN IS A REAL PLACE and Book Review / THE BOY WHO CAME BACK FROM HEAVEN by, Kevin & Alex Malarkey


The Bible tells us about Heaven and speaks of it as a real place; a place to which all who love Jesus will someday be.  We will know our friends and family in heaven.  There we will see Jesus.  Many people, before they take that last breath into the fragile tent of their earthly lungs, speak of angels being present in the room.  Some that have gone as far as the "gates of heaven" only to come back have spoken of what they've seen and experienced.  When my friends Nina and Mark Haines lost their mentally ill son they both had a vision regarding him.  To his father Jon said, "It's beautiful here."  There are several books currently on the market about this topic; among the best -- The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven.   

People who have preceded us in death, are now, part of the great cloud of witnesses that scripture speaks of surrounding us in life.  Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us (Hebrews 12: 1).   

Though He knows we will be sad and has designed the grieving process, Jesus tells us not to grieve as the unsaved do who have no hope.  Read 1st Thessalonians 3: 13-18; and 4: 1-11. 

... the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel (Colossians 1: 5). 

I was so blessed by reading this book.  "The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven."  I hope many of you will pick it up and be blessed by the content as I was. 
Many of my readers are in other countries, in places that are currently experiencing turmoil and violence.  In some of our cities in the United States, certain neighborhoods are under siege by gangs and it seems very little is done to make these places safe so that children can play outside without being threatened; without seeing the ravages of unchecked crime.  Today, our tolerance for evil, is such that more and more are being persecuted for their faith.  God wakes me in the night to pray and right now for Ukraine, North Korea, and of course Israel.   Many are accepting of way too much and some are intimidated into coercive silence.  But I am not discouraged.  I trust Jesus and I believe we are on the eve of a kind of spiritual revival that many have been praying for.   The apostle Paul wrote to his spiritual son Timothy: For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed (Jesus Christ) and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day (2nd Timothy 1: 12).  
Christian people carry within them the Holy Spirit.  Letting God work through us we stand in the breach.  Some walk a thin line as they pray and labor to make a difference and many are martyred for their faith.  Some cannot speak, but they pray powerful prayers of intercession and this is their calling.  Revelation 6: 9-11 speaks directly to those who have died for their faith and in turn inform our own battles for righteousness and justice.  It's a long passage, but some may not have a Bible handy.  For this reason I'll quote the passage in full from the New American Standard translation.
When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained; and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on earth?"  And there was given to each of them a white robe; and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, would be completed also (Revelation 6: 9-11). 
Another informative  passage from Revelation, reminds us that on many levels the battle is already won.  Satan has already been judged and the evil that demons and evil human spirits wreck in the lives of people is overcome by this blessed, wonderful faith being walked out in significance and power.  
Then I heard a loud voice in heaven saying, "Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night.   And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even when faced with death.  For this reason, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them.  Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, knowing that he has only a short time" (Revelation 12: 10-12). 
In Zechariah chapter 6 we read of an angel who woke the prophet from sleep to convey a vision.  When Zechariah asked the angel for clarity, "What are these, my Lord," the angel responded with a universal kingdom truth applicable for all of us regardless of what we may be experiencing. 
Then He said to me, "This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel saying, 'Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts (Zechariah 4: 6). 

And looking at them Jesus said to them, "With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible" (Mathew 19: 26). Also: Mark 20:27;  Luke 18: 27
How do we access this power?  We pray and we do not give up in prayer.  We trust the many promises of God regarding prayer.  God said that all His promises were "yes"  and when we lift up these promises to God - that He loves us and will respond to our prayers - what follows is the triumphant "amen!"  Read 2nd Corinthians 1: 18-22.  About prayer, Jesus said:  Truly, truly, I say to you he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go the Father.  Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.  If you love Me, you will keep My commandments (John 14: 12-15). 

While we are fighting a battle -- and each is drawn to causes according to a divine calling and equipping in Him -- we feel the spiritual help that comes from faith.  There is an evil that encroaches upon all life, satan and it's forces against the divine mandate to be salt and light, not passive, but radically grounded in God's truth, Holy Spirit carriers.  While we may feel  tired and discouraged, we are not living for this material world, but for the promise of eternity in heaven.   For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them (Ephesians 2: 8-10).   
Here is a quote from this wonderful book; The Boy Who Came Back From Heaven by, Kevin and Alex Malarkey.     
Heaven is real.  There is an unseen world at work - an intensely active spiritual dimension right here on earth, all around us.  And much of this activity keeps us from focusing on our future destination, the place where we will spend eternity.  (Quote from the Introduction)
How much more would we risk for Christ, for His goodness and righteousness, the divine path exposed in His word, if we really understood Heaven? My friend, Marg, lost her mother whom she had a wonderful and close relationship with.  For this reason, for comfort, she wanted to understand more about Heaven.  God led her to read this book, which she shared with me; a real blessing.   

Angel description told to Kevin Malarkey by his son, Alex who lay in a coma after a terrible auto accident: "The angels were big and muscular like wrestlers, and they had wings on their backs from their waist to their shoulders." Alex Malarkey

Kevin had some insightful words which came from his interactions with true prayer warriors. 
"Isn't it possible to appear to be a pleasant person, with a smiling face, saying all the right words to give the impression that one is close to God?  Isn't it revealing that Jesus, the apostle Paul, and all of the great saints of the Bible were never described as nice?  God had taken care of where he placed us.  Not among your average "nice"  people, but among true men and women of God, soldiers of the Cross who were ready to mobilize.  These were people who understood spiritual warfare in ways that the vast majority of us never recognize." Page 52 

God told us about this wonderful place called heaven.  Jesus said ...
"Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My father's house are many dwelling places, if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.  If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.  And you know the way where I am going."  Thomas said to Him, "Lord we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?"  Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me" (John 14: 1-6). 
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die.  Do you believe this? (John 11: 25, 26). 
"For whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved," Romans 10: 13). 
Looking forward to heaven, inspired by the Holy Spirit, Paul wrote: For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us (Romans 8: 18).

 For more about Spiritual Warfare read my book:

Discerning Spirits: Visionary Gifts in Practice.

Also: Wood's End

Soon to be Released:
The Year Between the Wood


Friday, May 16, 2014


I wanted to share the cover for the WOOD'S END sequel; THE YEAR BETWEEN THE WOOD.  My friend, Martha Burnham is reading it for those little errors, those comma's in the right place / not my strong suit.  I met Martha in Junior High School and even then she was the studious, detailed dream of every teacher while I, on the other hand, was not.   

When I get the file back from Martha I'll read the book one more time before sending it off to Paul Mayer who will format for Kindle, Nook, and Soft Cover on Amazon.  Although Brian is no longer with us, this cover was done by Shane and Joel at Churchill Studios in Memphis.  The image comes from the pre-production trailer which you can find on YouTube.  Thank you for your interest.   Will be available soon / the goal is to have it up July 2014.  I know, famous last words, but I am making progress.  Click on the image to read the back cover description.  Love you all.... 

Sent the last few chapters to Martha today (May 30, 2014).  When I get the file back I'll read it one more time and send for formatting.  Progress...  Next week I'll be working on the third book, as yet untitled. 

Wednesday, April 30, 2014


Dan McGookey, an Ohio Lawyer, has an excellent series of articles up on his website related to mortgage fraud. When I lost my home in 2012 it was so hard to find the information I needed in order to understand what happened.  And when I did it wasn't often articulated in a way that I could understand.  In every sense time has been on my side as I've dug into this and still have much to learn.  So when I find well written, helpful information I want to share it.  There is a very streamlined chain of conspiracy in violation of RICO between Banks, the foreclosure sub-servicers, and the real estate industry.  Dual tracking is a significant tool and most of the time homeowners, desperately trying to play by the rules don't realize how every effort is undermined by those banks (mortgage servicers) who took the taxpayer bailout money.  Some states do more for consumers than my own state of TN which is a non-judicial foreclosure state which has only made the whole process of theft easier for those intent on destroying the moral fiber of this country in the name of greed.     

Access the following website and review the articles Dan McGookey has on the right side of his page.  You may not be in the state of Ohio, but you'll find his insights and knowledge very helpful.  I'll try and get him on my Unseen World Blog radio show for a future interview.  Another really good article.  Read / Hit this link from a law firm in Ohio.  More and more lawyers are educating themselves about these issues and have prepared themselves to fight this cause. 
Article by: Dan McGookey. 

My articles on this topic that I've posted on this blog are:

It's very helpful to read the details of other cases; those that have been successfully prosecuted. The link below provides brief overviews of various cases where perpetrators have gone to jail.

White collar criminals rob tax payers.  We are going to see more and more people charged with mortgage fraud.  I'd like to see more activity in prosecuting the many layered fraud schemes which sidelined untold numbers of Hamp Applications.  This was accomplished with the help of Bank and Foreclosure sub-servicer employees, brokers, attorney's etc.  In the case below duplicate HUD-1 documents were filed. For too many this is a significant feature of what kind of fraud may have taken place and is among the charges filed in this case.
And for a spiritual perspective read my book: DISCERNING SPIRITS / soft cover at amazon. Download from Kindle, Nook, Screwpulp. 

Monday, March 24, 2014


Son of God - The Film

I saw the movie Son of God with some friends from church.  They thought it was wonderful and as I sat in the theatre I heard people around me shedding a few tears.  Afterwards we went out to dinner...  The discussion continued and I felt that, as people of faith, they were merely gratified to see any Christian themed film on the big screen and being critical just seemed ungrateful.
For the number of Biblical errors and the degree of creative license taken I just couldn't agree.  So perhaps it would be more accurate to call this a Christian-themed film.
To compare Son of God in any way with the excellence of The Passion of the Christ... well, that would be a travesty. Our benchmark standard of excellence has to be the Mel Gibson film.
What offended me most of all was the actor chosen to play my precious Savior, Jesus Christ.  Diogo Morgado is a former model who was clearly cast for his appearance and not his acting ability. Many have since touted him as a sex symbol, something Jesus Christ never was.  
We have one and only one physical description of Jesus from scripture. I think this is telling that Father-God didn't think we needed more than one.  We also have the Shroud of Turin, which I personally believe is genuine and in no way suggests Jesus as dynamically handsome and drawing people to him by externals.  We have the wonderful story of Jesus as a boy, leaving his parents to caravan home without Him; returning to the temple to be "about my Fathers business." What we understand from reading the passage is that Jesus the boy had wisdom beyond his years, was fully aware of His destiny, and conveyed an honesty... truth being what drew people to him.  But again... no physical description of a cute, highly attractive, handsome boy.

In a prophetic vision Isaiah wrote of the coming Savior...  
Who has believed our message?  And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?  For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him (Isaiah 53: 1, 2).
Paul made no mention of Jesus being handsome. He heard much about Jesus' acts and ministry from James, Peter and John who along with Barnabas mentored Paul in the faith. Mark, who was not an apostle, may have known Jesus as a young boy and, as we know, spent years in Paul's company. For all these numerous first hand accounts from people who actually saw Jesus, walked and served with him during his earthly ministry it is very significant for what Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, did NOT say about Jesus' physical appearance. Paul merely records that Jesus was, "made in the likeness of men."  

Despite the lie of casting choices from people who should know better and what this misleads people to believe, what Jesus physically looked like was, in fact, important in that Father God chose to reveal His Son as being... ordinary, physically "unremarkable."  One all of us, whoever we were, could relate to. 

Jesus looked like a very average person, since he came FOR all men and all women; beautiful, ugly, average, scarred, disfigured...  He was about healing the internal scaring of sin and the new life and hope that only Jesus Christ can bring to desperate people; even those that do not know their deep need for new and fresh, eternal pasture.  I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life and have it abundantly (John 10: 9, 10).   

When Paul says that Jesus came as a bond-slave what is meant here is a servant, one who came to serve, by a free exercise of will and choice; in this case for a divine, eternal purpose whose mysteries, for now, we only know in part. Paul writes that Jesus Christ...
...emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  For this reason also God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name (Philippians 2: 7-9).  Read the remainder of the passage. 

I guess the casting agent in Son of God didn't get this memo.  The inference of the film, Son of God, went on to imply a certain magnetism in that confluence of physical appearance and inner magic, what casting agents call that "it" factor. The truth is that not one person was drawn to Jesus because He was handsome. They were drawn by the miracles He performed which pointed to Jesus being really and truly the Messiah, the true Son of God, the Savior of those who would trust Him.
Isaiah goes on to proclaim in what has become known as the picture of the suffering Messiah...
He was despised and forsaken of men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and like one from who men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him (Isaiah 53: 3).      
A kingdom principal evidenced many times over through scripture is that we are not to judge by appearance. We are to test spirits, test words, test intention and motive not only in ourselves, but in others.  God does not bestow blessing and favor by any measure of externals and in fact he says that His power is perfected in weakness; at those times when we give up the performance scripts and cry out to God that we need Him.  Paul wrote:  And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness."  Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me" (2nd Corinthians 12: 9).
But the Lord said to Samuel, "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart (1st Samuel 16: 7). 
What is this power that works through the imperfections of men?  Jesus clearly told us to stand in His authority and exercise this power for purposes of healing, restoration, salvation, exorcism, deliverance and so much more. This message was lost in the film, Son of God. What was also missing was not one... not one incidence of Jesus casting out demons.  Given my own ministry and my concern for the rise of paganism in direct proportion to ignorance of God's word I find this a serious lapse. 

I'm not sure we needed another film that put scriptural authority on the back-burner.  Perhaps the problem was in how the director interpreted the script or the fact that the editing lacked or that this was admittedly pieced together with surplus footage.  I found it distracting for the several distortions and omissions.     

What did I like about this film?  I'm glad it was made and that it has had a good run in movie theaters all across this country.  This speaks volumes to those who might be listening.  I know that because of this film people will think about Jesus and perhaps some will reach for a Bible to read this powerful record of His life on earth for themselves.  The actor that played Pilate, Greg Hicks, was pretty wonderful.  He did an excellent job and I like how Pilate's dilemma was fleshed out in  this actor's interpretation of the part he played.   I'm not sure what other roles he has played, but he was professional and skilled with reams of talent.  And... as they say.  The camera loves him.   
"Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.  Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask; it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.  For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst" Matthew 18: 18-20). 
Truly, truly, I say to you he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do because I go to the Father.  Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.  If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it.  If you love Me you will keep My commandments (John 14: 12-15). 

Jesus was approachable as He is today. His arms are wide open to all that will come.  I love the following passage for what it says, but also infers.  It was His mercy and compassion, this wealth of very great love for hurting people that transcended language and was the substance of communication. There was no chance whatsoever that this content of heavenly purpose could be upstaged by physical beauty. Hurting people looked into the face of Jesus and they knew... they just knew and in God's very great love for us in sending His one and only Son into a corrupted world, to a lost and corrupted people the proof of that love was seen in the miracles performed. There was not only physical healing, but eternal healing for the hungry soul. 

The news about Him spread throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all who were ill, those suffering with various diseases and pains, demoniacs, epileptics, paralytics; and He healed them (Matthew 4: 24). 

It is the same today.  People of faith just know.  We've met Jesus, had a healing encounter, received eternal salvation and the gift of the Holy Spirit who dwells within every true believer and we know, what we know... Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Hebrews 11: 1). 
How does a movie depict what is impossible to quantify by externals.  How does film communicate transcendent power? Power that comes from on high through faith in Jesus Christ, and working through fragile humanity.  Certainly not in ways that fly in the face of scripture inviting us to leave our critical thinking skills and discernment gifts at the ticket counter. So let us enjoy a "Christian" labeled film, but lets not pretend it's more than it is.  For me, Son of God, was a disappointment and misses on too many fronts. I have no plans to buy it and, as to watching it for second time, I think I'll pass.  To imply it could be any kind of a teaching tool; well I'd pass on that too for there were just too many errors; not matters of interpretation, but errors.  
In The Passion of the Christ, Mel Gibson and his team succeeded to visual and evocative emotional authority.  This film would not have been made without God using him, despite all his human frailties.  Below is an excerpt taken from the Prospectus I wrote for Wood's End and my hope of making that book into a Christian film.  I'm in no way comparing my Wood's End screen play to that of Mel Gibson's, which was entirely taken from scripture. 



Excerpts from the Wood's End Prospectus

 Christian film, as an evangelical and educational tool to convey Christian messages and core truths, broke into the consciousness of many people with the release of Mel Gibson’s, The Passion of the Christ, which was released February 2004. 

Despite an aggressive secular attack, with attempts to label the movie anti-Semitic and an ironic criticism of its violence, given the level of violence in many secular films, the movie-going public remained unfazed in their enthusiasm making up their own minds.    

The Passion of the Christ stunned the secular movie industry; becoming the eighth highest grossing domestic film of all time.  Today, it is still the highest grossing non-English-speaking film of all time.    

Mel Gibson personally funded The Passion of the Christ.  He had no expectation of a huge commercial success.  He anticipated a limited release.  As secular pressure built and denominational expectations were heard from, a fire storm of publicity was unleashed.  Gibson was wise enough to capitalize on this.   The degree of opposition to some "Christian" films can be equated to the degree to which satan must marshal it's forces to oppose the eternal potential of film as a creative vehicle.     

Much of this controversy, both for Mel Gibson and the film itself, was media fueled as industry elites attempted to contrive conflicts even before the film entered post production.  Mel Gibson and his company, Icon Productions, soon realized they had a tiger by the tail.  And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8: 28). 

According to the Barna Group, much of the films’ success can be attributed to fervent support of churches crossing all denominational lines, “many of whom labeled the movie as one of the greatest evangelistic tools in history.” 
Wide acceptance of the film and its subsequent financial success can be attributed to a strict adherence to the scriptural accounts in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.  The only quote not directly taken from the four gospels comes in part from Revelation 21: 5 and prophetically from Isaiah 2: 1-4.  And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”  And He said, “Write for these words are faithful and true (Revelation 21: 5).”   
Even Gibson’s additional research, which contributed to the films artistic and historical excellence, sparked controversy.  This research informed the scripts setting in Roman occupied Palestine, accuracy in dress and customs, visual portrayal of the Hebrew religious elite of the day and daily life.  The same level of research, which would be applauded in any secular film, even this became a trumped up source of controversy in a veiled attempt to drive a wedge between various Christian denominations.
Fortunately, the buying public either saw through the propaganda or didn’t really care. The message sent to secular media?  People of genuine faith are less prone to manipulation by secular, elitist agendas than one might think. People of faith make up their own minds and all those efforts to get the Judeo/Christian community royally offended, in the expectation that The Passion of the Christ would bomb, dismally failed.   
NOAH with Russell Crowe
Above is an amusing and I'm guessing very apt review of Noah written by, Matt Walsh. I have yet to see this film so sharing this link for those who are interested. Had to smile at Matt's following remark...

"Naturally, we decided to spend it being pummeled by the blaring condescension of the most insipid, absurd, unimaginative, clumsily contrived piece of anti-Christian film making to come along since, well, probably just last week."

I haven't seen the film so maybe I should not comment on it.  I will however, because most Christians struggle to interpret portions of Genesis 6.  This being the case, I would have low expectations of an Atheist interpretation.  However, as someone recently told me, "I'm glad the topic was depicted because maybe people will think about scripture."  Another friend told me how "truly grieved" he was by the interpretation of Noah who was a faithful man of God. 

What I'm expecting is that Jehovah God is not in any way mentioned or lifted up.  I'm not expecting a Biblical depiction of the level of sin and world-wide judgment that scripture speaks of.  I imagine we won't see a true account of the Nephillim and satan's true intention of using these genetically engineered, demonic-hybrids to corrupt the DNA of man.  I'm told that in the film the Nephillim actually "help" Norah and are depicted as rocks.  When was the last time you saw a rock defile and rape a woman?  In truth, when scripture says that Noah was, "perfect in his time," what is meant is not that he was a perfect man, but that he and his family were free of Nephillim genetics imposed on the greater humanity of that time.  This was a threat to God's plan in the context of His creation / the DNA through whom the Savior of the Universe, Jesus Christ would be born; fully God and fully man. that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2: 10, 11). 
Looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds (Hebrews 2: 13, 14). 
Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.  But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by his scourging we are healed.  All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him(Isaiah 53: 4-6). 
For whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10: 13). 

This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: He Himself took our infirmities and carried away our diseases (Matthew 8: 17). 
Also 1st Peter: 2: 24 / ...and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 

So I might or might not see the film.  If I do it won't because I purchased a ticket. 

About Mel Gibson

They say that Christian's shoot their wounded.  More often than not this is a lie of satan. I've been pretty wounded at times in my life and I've survived by the grace of God and the goodness of my Christian friends. I often think of Billy Graham reaching out to Jim Baker.

Anyway... recently I watched a documentary about actors and scandal and what was said about Mel seemed such a sad contrivance.  We are invited to judge him by the sad reality of alcoholism.   

I would guess that Mel Gibson's desire to do the Maccabees film as a next project and his pairing with a certain screenwriter was  a set up from the start by certain factions in the film industry. Sorry Mel, and I think today you know this all too well.  That man was never, I mean never, going to deliver any kind of finished screen play. I wonder what they paid him not to write?   

I know I'm not the only one praying for Mel Gibson.  I'd just like to remind my brothers and sisters in Christ to keep it up.  Because if this movie, The Passion of the Christ, were his only accomplishment in life, it would represent a huge victory. Not only were people saved - they are still being saved. Jesus came closer to a lot of lukewarm believers.  I myself was brought closer to Jesus in seeing what My Savior really and truly suffered depicted as it was... and for each of us.      

Mel Gibson also modeled the old adage that we are not to think like everyone else. Common sense, hard core actualities and every evidence at the time screamed...  The Passion of the Christ, made as it was in a dead language and entirely from scripture defied every preconception; that this film could not be made, would never be received, would fail to make a profit, was too Biblical, too Protestant, too Christian, too Catholic, too Jewish.  Oh yes, and at the same time we were invited to accept that it was biased against Protestants, Catholics, and Jews, racially slanted etc...  The opposition was frantic, satanic, chaotic and appealed to triggers of fear. That opposition failed.  

Enemies want Mel Gibson to fade into the woodwork.  Shamed and humiliated to never show his face. Hollywood, for the most part, do not shoot their addicts.  They raise them up, give them jobs as seen with Charlie Sheen and Robert Downey, Jr etc...  Perhaps it is true that certain segments in traditional film-making only shoot their Christian, conservative addicts.  
Someday I hope to make my film Wood's End.  If you're interested in helping please get in touch.  I have two budgets. One for filming on location in Boston and Western Massachusetts and one for filming here in Fayette County, TN.  All that remains is funds and casting.  And... when I think of casting I think of what my friend Brian Churchill said who filmed the actors we considered.  He said, don't look at type, don't look at appearance. We're looking for good acting and what gets conveyed through lens. That certain "it" factor. When we find the right actors we'll decide where they fit.  Sadly Brian Churchill passed away at age 43 on September 14, 2013.  I miss our many conversations about scripts and film in general.  His favorite topic of conversation. 

Interested in Christian film?  Call me: (901-417-4976)   


Saturday, March 15, 2014

MY LATEST HERO: The Honorable Robert E. Grossman of the state of New York / able to leap tall buidlings with a single decision... Right up there with Marie McDonnell and John O'Brian and CJ Holmes. 
Article above (link) by, Dan McGookey. 
Another really good article.  Read / Hit this link from a law firm in Ohio.  More and more lawyers are educating themselves about these issues and have prepared themselves to fight this cause. 

As many of you know who read my "real" blog (The Unseen World with Alexandra Clair) I'm very interested in wrongful and illegal foreclosure and have a quite lengthy blog on this page which is really so much a mismatch  that I've thought of taking it down altogether except that it is still being accessed and read.  I appreciate every one of you.  So this isn't my normal topic, but is such a serious issue which speaks to the health of our country and especially when we are conned into believing that good is evil and evil is good.  Jesus had quite a lot to say on that topic.  If nothing else the Dred Scott decision tells us that legal is not always right and what's happening today ranks right up there, is a corroding immoral pattern of practice that must not be accepted any longer by judges.   
Anyone interested in the matter of wrongful foreclosure and MERS right to act as nominee in creating a new Deed of Trust as the "breeder document" for subsequent fraud and theft of property and their claim that they hold legal title to act as both the nominee and mortgage record holder should read the ruling of my latest hero, The Judge Honorable Robert E. Grossman / State of New York.  The article by Mendelman (Mendelman Matters) is entertaining, humorous, and an excellent succinct summary / link above. I guess when the truth is so very disturbing we must find something to laugh at. 
Max Gardner commented as follows:
"This case may well be the final dagger in the deep dark heart of the MERS business model.  MERS has fired its President, R. K. Arnold, and may well terminate its Secretary, William Hultman, but MERS cannot fix the systematic and fundamentally flawed legal issues clearly and succinctly identified by the Court in Agard." Also follow CJ Holmes and her bog and website.

Love the following written by, yes honorable, but also HERO,  Judge Robert Grossman... in his decision. 
MERS and its partners made the decision to create and operate under a business model that was designed in large part to avoid the requirements of the traditional mortgage recording process.  This court does not accept the argument that because MERS may be involved with 50% of all residential mortgages in the country, that is reason enough for this Court to turn a blind eye to the fact that this process does not comply with the law.
Not to mention that MERS withholds important information from the public and interacts in accountable manner almost never.  For example they produce something called the MERS Milestone Report which is not available to the public but only to those intent on defrauding the public. 

The argument that the end of the world will arrive if MERS is held responsible; (yes, they make that argument). MERS has become the primary facilitator of forgery through countless "Assignment of Deed of Trust" documents many generated by Robo-Signers and acting as the "BREEDER DOCUMENT" for wrongful foreclosures, wrongful ousters and evictions as well as many other crimes in failing to follow the laws of this country,  in violation of due process and reminds me of two other shameful rationales for massive patterns of crime.
The Dred Scott decision that upheld slavery in violation of the US Constitution and the word-soup  that justified such horrific crimes, some purely economic, ignoring and dismissing the human suffering and moral imperatives.   (Also the English Penal Laws)                                                             
And the addicts rationale that rules don't apply to them in continuing life-stealing addict-behavior... in this case addicted to greed, power, and the con-game of getting it over on others unable to defend themselves because the truck was too big and the rules were changed in mid-stream so crooks could operate.  Much of the fault goes to non judicial foreclosure states like my own who forgot that bankers could also be greedy and with little governing oversight crooks flock to fill the breach.  Including the whole foreclosure sub-servicer industry in a chain of conspiracy... I think in violation of RICO.  Where is the FBI on this one? 

Judges and lawyers have been slow to grasp the validity of the crimes committed, but this is changing and will eventually benefit the widows and orphans... and many others.  So heres' to you Judge Grossman.  I almost never drink or I'd lift a glass.  Stay true to the Indiana Jones tradition of coloring outside the lines. It's not what you know... it's where imagination prompts you to risk for the sake of the greater good.  Why?  Because there is such a thing as a moral compass and you have one.  And we do have laws in this country, some achieved at great sacrifice, and these laws should stand in the defense of those who cannot defend themselves.  Not as a vehicle of oppression. 
Of the Irish Penal Laws Edmund Burke wrote: "a machine of wise and elaborate contrivance, as well fitted for the oppression, impoverishment and degradation of a people, and the debasement in them of human nature itself, as ever proceeded from the perverted ingenuity of man."  If we can follow the threads, what started on Wall Street, meandered to Congress and the Senate has turned out to be a heartless excuse for legal theft if ever there was one. 
LETS HAVE LUNCH.  I'LL BUY... Maybe Marie and John
and CJ and Max can join us.  That would be a trip!