Posts Tagged metaphor

Seeker

Matthew 7: 7 – 8

Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you for every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened.

I have a question for you today. Does or did Jesus have the capacity to tell a lie? Did Jesus ever tell one lie in his life? We need to know because he is the one who spoke these words we read today. Here is another question, is it possible that when Jesus said these words he meant them only figuratively? In other words, are the words in the quoted verses for today meant to express their literal meaning or are they some figurative, allegorical or metaphorical representation of another meaning? We need to know! Does Jesus mean what he said or was he speaking in nuanced riddles?

I looked up simile, allegory, metaphor and figurative and from the meanings I see there, none of them apply to these two verses. Still, many people excuse the literal meanings of Jesus’ words claiming that they represent some other ideas which are not actually spoken. Because Jesus sometimes taught by using parables, some people discount all of his speech as representative rather than literal. Okay, so let me ask you another question. Why would the Son of God, he who came to set us free and to lead us into truth and fullness of life, play cloak and dagger with his beloved? He came to earth to die for each and every one of us; he came to give his life a ransom so that we might be saved. Why then would he hide the ball from us? And yes, that was figurative language I just used and it was obvious and understood.

That is the point of figurative language. It is not meant to hide the truth. It is used to illustrate and make clear difficult concepts. Finally, if we intend to have a relationship with Jesus, one that is based on truth and trust, then we must believe his words have actual meaning. He spoke so that we could hear and be free. When he said, “I came that they might have life, and might have it abundantly” (John 10: 10) we must assume and understand that those words mean exactly what they say. Otherwise they do not have meaning and frankly, the whole Bible is undermined. If Jesus wanted to communicate that the purpose of his coming to earth was to give us life, how else would he say it other than to use the words which have the meaning which normally and customarily mean just that? Do you see what I mean? Once a person reduces one of Jesus’ literal statements to fantasy or figurative poetry, then all meaning for all his messages is lost. Who can say which of his statements are mere figures of speech and which ones he actually meant as spoken? Honestly, it is beyond intellectual integrity for one to adopt this posture. It is the height of arrogance. People who excuse away Jesus’ words and meanings replace them with themselves and their reasoning. It is foolishness!

The point of all of this is that Jesus said that if we seek, we shall find. There is no figure of speech in that statement so really, the choice is whether or not we choose to take him at his word. Do we believe the Father of us all sent His only begotten son to earth to lead us into truth, wisdom, and freedom? Why would Yahweh, Abba Father, sacrifice His beloved on a cross for people He intended to mislead? Does that really make any sense at all? Jesus’ brother, James, said that we should ask God for wisdom promising that God would give it to us freely and without reproach (James 1: 5). Why, then, would God offer to give us all His wisdom yet cloak every word Jesus said while in the earth. It is illogical and unreasonable to believe that so, trust that Jesus came to open eyes and doors. Believe him when he says that if we ask, we shall receive. When we seek, we will always find. Knock on the door because Jesus is on the other side waiting to open it to you.

Jesus has so much for us. The Father invested everything He had to bring us into a personal relationship with Him. The Holy Spirit is hovering today with creative power in his hands. They long for us. Let our yearning reach out and take hold of the love offered. Ask, seek, knock . . . receive, find, be welcomed in.

New Threshing Sledge

Isaiah 41: 15

Behold, I have made you a new, sharp threshing sledge with double edges; you will thresh the mountains, and pulverize them, and will make the hills like chaff.

The aspect of this verse which is so profound to me is that our heavenly Father said that He has made us a threshing sledge. He said that within us is the power and the ability to thresh mountains, to pulverize them and to make hills as chaff. That power is within us in the person of the Holy Spirit. No thing is now impossible to those who believe because the Spirit of God has come to live inside of each of us.

There are two cautions I would give you in regards to your ruminations about this verse. First of all, some wish to argue, foolishly, that this verse was meant only to the nation of Israel. Well, my first argument to refute that is, “My name is Israel” and so is yours! We are now standing in the shoes of Israel thanks to our Lord, Jesus.

Secondly, why is the book of Isaiah in the Christian Bible if it isn’t for Christians? Let’s get a revelation here and cease with foolish semantics. Your God had you in mind before there even was an Israelite nation, even before there was an earth, so doesn’t it seem downright stupid to suggest that He didn’t mean these words for us?

The second caution I would give you is not to minimize these words or to make them so metaphorical that they lose all their power. So the mountains in your life might be a mountain of bills or medical issues. That is to look at these mountains metaphorically and that is okay. A mountain to Isaiah might be a relationship challenge to your or me. However, I want you to allow you mind to expand to encompass exactly what this verse says the way God gave it to Isaiah. I sincerely believe He was talking about real, physical mountains and that if we understand and embrace who we are in the Kingdom of God that truly there is nothing impossible to us.

So, consider what mountains you are facing today. Are any of them too big for your Dad? Now, the really big question, are any of them too large for you? Your father has given you power from His own hand to make you a “new, sharp threshing sledge with double edges.” You don’t have to let the mountains loom over you and weigh you down with their shadow. You can, and should, rise up and tell that mountain to jump into the sea and if it doesn’t, then thresh it, pulverize it, take it down! You are the power of God in this earth through His indwelling Spirit. Let that truth fill you.