Font Size

Jesus after a person was healed did not say, “I have healed you.” He said, “Your faith has healed you.”

“Ecclesia is defined as a political assembly of citizens in The definition of ancient Greece, or the church members. A group of ancient Greek politicians who came to Athens to debate is an example of an ecclesia. The collective congregation of a church is an example of an ecclesia.”

Words and ideas are like ships. As ships travel the seas they become encrusted with barnacles which impede their progress. Periodically they have to go into dry dock to have their bottoms scraped. By the same token our computers get filled with junk we have to remove.

The idea of ecclesia as a building or a concrete community leads inevitably to bureaucracy. This in turn leads always to the establishment of the exact structure which caused Jesus to call priests and scribes (and, importantly which EVERYONE seems to miss, PRIESTS AND SCRIBES alone) sinners. It is these and only these Jesus calls to repent lest they be damned.

The true ecclesia, the true church, is not found in a house built by human hands. Jesus said, “Where two or more of you are gathered in my name there is the church.”

So long as people insist on creating idols churches will continue to be built by human hands.

Most if not all of our criticism falls under, “Why do you worry about the dust in your neighbors’ eye? Look to the log in your own eye. Get rid of that and you will learn how to get the dust out of your neighbor’s eye.”

Booker T. Washington in his book UP FROM SLAVERY wrote of how he was terrified to learn how to read as after having done this so many Black men had been struck by what they called the lightning of the LORD after which they became preachers.

He wrote, “I never did get struck by that lightning.”

Reading that I realized that the foundation of American evangelical Christianity is mostly what comes out of the tail end of bulls.

That is one helluva sweeping statement. I stand by it.

Preaching the gospel has always been a fast track to wealth through gulling the ignorant.

In writer, playwright, screenwriter, director, producer David Mamet’s book on on motion picture making BAMBI VS. GODZILLA I found a quote from St. Francis, “Preach Christ constantly. Use words if you must.”

Reading that I silently said to myself, “Wow!”

I had until that moment always felt bad because I have been preaching Christ without words for decades. People have often said, “You are the only sincere Christian I have met.”

At once I did a web search. One preacher after another denounced those words. They did that because to accept them puts them out of business.

Mamet, the writer, playwright, screenwriter, director, producer and as far as I know non-Christian — gets what many who call themselves Christians clearly do not.

In his book TRUE AND FALSE David Mamet writes, “Any system built on belief functions through the operations of guilt and hypocrisy. Such a system, whether of acting training, meditation self improvement etc., functions as a Pseudoreligjon and is predicated on the individual’s knowledge of his or her own worthlessness The system holds itself out as the alleviator, cleanser, and redeemer of the guilty individual

“Now none of us is free of self doubt, and none of us is free of guilt. We all have thoughts, feelings, episodes, and tendencies which we would rather did not exist.

“A guilt-based educational system, which is to say, most acting training, survives through the Support of adherents who were guilty before they signed up. who came to classes and failed (how could they do otherwise, as the training was nonsense), and were then informed that their feelings of shame which they brought in with them — were due to their failure in class, and could be alleviated if and only if the student worked harder, “believed” more.”

People swarm to evangelical rallies. In a state a mass hysteria they “give themselves to JEEEEZUSS!”

It is herd intoxication.

They are told that if they believe on Jesus they will be cleansed on sin.

It’s like the story of the emperor’s new clothes.

Jesus and the prophets teach that the path is wide and many are found on it that leads to destruction while the path is strait and narrow that leads to life and few are found on it.”

Hearing that on radio, TV or at mass religious rallies the ignorant hear not “strait” but “straight.”

A strait path is not straight. It winds like a river. It is so narrow only one ship at a time can travel it. Other ships follow in single file.

Strait means enormously difficult almost impossible.

Right now I’m walking an enormously difficult path. It seems almost impossible.

I am walking it alone.

Henry Miller, in his AN OPEN LETTER TO SURREALISTS EVERYWHERE, wrote, “…When at last each man realizes that nothing is to be expected from God, or society, or friends, or benevolent tyrants, or democratic governments, or saints, or saviours, or even that holiest of holies, education, when each man realizes that he must work with his own hands to save himself, and that we need expect no mercy, perhaps then…Perhaps! Even then, seeing what manner of men we are, I doubt. The point is that we are doomed…No God is coming to save us. No system of government, no belief will provide us with that liberty and justice which men whistle for with the death-rattle….What distinguishes the majority of men from the few is their inability to act according to their beliefs. The hero is he who raises himself above the crowd…To get men to rally round a cause, a belief, an idea, is always easier than to persuade them to live their own lives….

“I came not to bring peace, but a sword!’ said the great humanitarian. That is not the utterance of a militarist, nor is it the utterance of a pacifist; it is the utterance of one of the greatest artists who ever lived. If his words mean anything they mean that the struggle for life, for more life, must be carried on day by day. It means that life itself is struggle, perpetual struggle. This sounds almost banal, and in fact it has become banal, thanks to the frog-like perspective of Darwin…

“For my part, I will say that whatever else I may want, I know I don’t want work. To live as an artist I stopped work some ten or twelve years ago…Naturally I was not paid to stop work and live as an artist…if one chooses to live his life in his own way he must pay the penalty…I need no leader and no god. I am my own leader and my own god. I make my own bibles. I believe in myself-that is my whole credo.

“…I am against revolutions because they always involve a return to the status quo both before and after the revolutions. I don’t want to wear a black shirt or a red shirt. I want to wear the shirt to suit my taste…Fuck your capitalistic society! Fuck your Communistic society and your Fascist society and all other societies! Society is made up of individuals. It is the individual who interests me-not the society.

“…Freud created a fiction which helped him pass the time away…

“So long as (man) cannot operate as a savage or less than a savage, and think as a god, or better than god, he will suffer…A man who is full of God is outside of faith…When a man is truly creative he works single-handed and he wants no help. A man acting alone, on faith, can accomplish what trained armies are incapable of doing. To believe in one’s self, in one’s own powers, is apparently the most difficult thing in the world…Whenever an English artist of any value has arisen he has been marked as Public Enemy №1.”

A man acting alone on faith can accomplish what trained armies are incapable of doing.

For twenty years I have experienced a severe personal attack that has been documented in the media.

Where has my strength to survive it come from?

It has come from Jesus (I have a better understanding of him than does Miller). Jesus said, “As they have done to the prophets, as they do to me they will do to you.”

I put my foot on this path knowing full well that it leads to the cross.

One writer on MEDIUM wrote that since Jesus alone suffered crucifixion and none of the apostles did we don’t have to.

How wide of the mark is his understanding! That word “sin” that gets everyone’s tit in a wringer is an archery term. It means “to miss the mark.”

Let these false preachers have their jets. Let them park their bottoms on gold plated toilets.

Come the judgement they will meet He who will say, “Go away. I never knew you.”

Like Booker T. Washington I have never been struck by the lightning of the LORD.

I have, however, been struck deeply by the power of THE WORD.

With Christ we are called to pick up our cross.

I picked mine up along ago when at 24 I read THE NEW TESTAMENT through not to find God, Jesus or salvation but simply to understand what it teaches.

That understanding did not require Jesus to be anything other that what he was which was a dirt poor peasant from, in the words of Thomas Cahill in DESIRE OF THE EVERLASTING HILLS, “butt fuck Galilee.”

I did not need him to be God, the son of God nor did I need his resurrection.

But one thing faith on what he taught has shown me is that indeed he is God, the begotten son of GOD (the first not the only) and that, yes, after having died on the cross and been buried he did indeed rise.

Jesus did not say to those healed by their faith to go find a place where everyone would think as they do.

He sent them to bear witness to those who do think as we do.

How are we to do that?

Not by our words.

By our lives.

“Preach Christ constantly. Use words if you must.”–St. Francis. I’m with Francis. Many are not.

This man in Hollywood in 1970 caused me to have a change of heart for the better. THE NIGHT THEY RAIDED ROCHDALE is one of my most widely read publications. Famed Canadian Artist & long time friend Chester Brown created this cover for a special limited edition created to help cover my legal costs. So far I have received little help from men. That is to be expected. “…When at last each man realizes that nothing is to be expected from God, or society, or friends, or benevolent tyrants, or democratic governments, or saints, or saviours, or even that holiest of holies, education, when each man realizes that he must work with his own hands to save himself, and that we need expect no mercy, perhaps then…Perhaps! Even then, seeing what manner of men we are, I doubt. The point is that we are doomed…No God is coming to save us. No system of government, no belief will provide us with that liberty and justice which men whistle for with the death-rattle….What distinguishes the majority of men from the few is their inability to act according totheir beliefs. The hero is he who raises himself above the crowd…To get men to rally round a cause, a belief, an idea, is always easier than to persuade them to live their own lives.”–Henry Miller, AN OPEN LETTER TO SURREALISTS EVERYWHERE. This is Chester’s favorite story from the book. Those not familiar with his work will find it a superb investment of their time. He is an original thinker.

Amen.

« »