Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wrath of Kahn and Galatians 2:20

Even if you're not an original Trekkie, you will get this. When Kahn (Ricardo Montaban sp?) first appeared in the Star Trek TV series he was on a space ship floating through the universe in cryogenic suspension. Capt. Kirk had him defrosted and found that he and his crew were the only survivors of a lost world. His conquering spirit led him to capture the Enterprise, forcing Kirk and his usual comrades to face death together. Even in the face of death, Kirk's crew would not break. Kahn realized his mistake. In experiencing the threat of death together, the crew had bonded into a oneness that could not be broken. We know the truth of the depth of this bonding. Football training camp and army boot camp (and whatever else is in between) is based on this group psychology. The fact is you can only begin to understand and relate to another person who has experienced what you have. I'm sure I don't have to convince you of that fact. Kirk and his crew finally regained control of the ship and banished Kahn and his crew to an uninhabited planet to start their own new world. Their escape from that world was the basis for the Star Trek II movie, the Wrath of Kahn. Ok, what has that got to do with Galatians 2:20? I'm getting there, but I want to add my story first. Around 30 years ago I went through a series of life altering events that included three deaths in my immediate family, (I had to go to the hospital with my sister to tell dad (who was having major surgery) that mom only had a few weeks to live) one miscarriage, a failed business that led us to the edge of bankruptcy, my own major surgery and an assortment of the typical betrayals of "friends" and false accusations of enemies. It was so overwhelming a pastor friend of mine told me, (half jesting) "don't stand to close to me, I don't want to get hit by the same lightening." Through all of this I prayed, cried, pleaded and did everything any believer would do to hold on to his faith, even if by the finest of thread. It was as if God did not exist. For months, that stretched into years, no help help came. Some resolution came in a final determination to (as Hebrews 11 puts it) "walk in faith, having not received the fullness of the promise" until I died. With all the power of my will I could summon I chose to live believing, regardless of what I personally felt. If explanations were necessary, I would get them after my last breath. I even wrote and outline for a book I would one day write called "when the heavens are brass". It is a study in Psalms. My personal 12 step program. (You can find it in my blog archives 9-29-08). To be honest, I never really understood why God let that horrible series, that absolute forsaken feeling, come into my life for so long. Truth is, I have had brief visits with forsakeness since then, but I always retreat quickly to "walking and waiting" in faith plus a quick review of my 12 step program.. I even took it a step further, actually desiring to see some prayers remain unanswered until AFTER my last breath so I can celebrate the answer to my prayers with the Angels around the throne. ( I'm getting to Gal. 2:20, really). Sometime after 5 A.M. this morning, the Holy Spirit got really chatty. (it is my opinion He is a morning person, but that's just an opinion). Since He tends to speak with lightening flashes of understanding, it is hard to sequence all that He said. In trekkie terms it was a mind meld. I was reading a piece from Jacob Boheme (1620's) last night that really put some pieces of the puzzle of life into place. Jacob is a "Teutonic Theosopher" which is theological Geek Speak for a German who thinks a lot about God. Boheme was relating the story of a Soul who had come to Christ and felt totally abandoned and failing, even forsaken by God. I had deep empathy with that soul, it could easily be me. OK, NOW Galatians 2:20. Chatty Spirit wakes me up this AM and says remember all those really bad days of the past? Like I could ever forget! With a clarity that is growing like the rising of the sun I understand what happened back then and why I MUST revisit it today. Galatians 2:20 teaches "I have been crucified with Christ, yet I live". For me to Bond with Christ, truly bond, I MUST walk where he walked, feel what he felt, experience what he experience, even to that most horrible of moments on the Cross when He Cried, MY GOD1 WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?! It is NOT that he was ever forsaken, but He really FELT like it....The Shack makes this pretty clear. It is theologically IMPOSSIBLE for God to forsake Jesus...or me for that matter. But it is very necessary that I FEEL forsaken, to bond with what Christ went through, to understand is to be truly his brother. That understanding takes us from human sympathy to spirit empathy. It puts a whole new light on things doesn't it? In my life experience I did die, in a way. Physical death would have been so much easier and desirable at the time. But I do LIVE, but differently. When those abandoment feelings come, it is just a reminder of the fact that I AM A BROTHER of Christ. I am not failing, I am FINALLY MAKING IT, I'm part of the team, off the bench and into the game. I have to admit, I really love it when the Holy Spirit gets chatty. In case I lost you some where along the line, don't forget that only the Holy Spirit can really teach you what this means in your life, ask Him to show you personally, He will. If you have the time, check out Boheme's story:

The distressed Soul said,
I have followed thy Counsel, and thereby attained a Ray, or Emanation of the Divine Sweetness, but it is gone from me again, and I am now deserted. Moreover I have outwardly very great Trials and Afflictions in the World; for all my good Friends forsake and scorn me; and am also inwardly assaulted with Anguish and Doubt, and know not what to do.
The enlightened Soul said,
Now I like thee very well; for now our beloved Lord Jesus Christ is performing that same Pilgrimage or Process on Earth with thee and in thee, which he did himself when he was in this World, who was continually reviled, despised, and evil spoken of and had nothing of his own in it; and now thou bearest his Mark or Badge. But do not wonder at it, or think it strange; for it must be so, in order that thou mayest be tried, refined, and purified. In this Anguish and Distress thou wilt necessarily hunger and cry after Deliverance; and by such Hunger and Prayer thou wilt attract Grace to thee both from within and from without. For thou must grow from above and from beneath to be the Image of God again. Just as a young Plant is agitated by the Wind, and must stand its Ground in Heat and Cold, drawing Strength and Virtue to it from above and from beneath by that Agitation, and must endure many a Tempest, and undergo much Danger before it can come to be a Tree, and bring forth Fruit. For through that Agitation the Virtue of the Sun moveth in the Plant, whereby its wild Properties come to be penetrated and tinctured with the Solar Virtue, and grow thereby. And this is the Time wherein thou must play the Part of a valiant Soldier in the Spirit of Christ, and co-operate thyself Therewith. For now the Eternal Father by his fiery Power begetteth his Son in thee, who changeth the Fire of the Father, namely, the first Principle, or wrathful Property of the Soul, into the Flame of Love, so that out of Fire and Light (viz. Wrath and Love) there cometh to be one Essence, Being, or Substance, which is the true Temple of God. And now thou shalt bud forth out of the Vine Christ, in the Vineyard of God, and bring forth Fruit in thy Life, and by assisting and instructing others, shew forth thy Love in Abundance, as a good Tree. For Paradise must thus spring up again in thee through the Wrath of God, and Hell be changed into Heaven in thee. Therefore be not dismayed at the Temptations of the Devil, who seeketh and striveth for the Kingdom which he once had in thee; but having now lost it, he must be confounded, and depart from thee. And he covereth thee outwardly with the Shame and Reproach of the World, that his own Shame may not be known, and that thou mayest be hidden to the World. For with thy New Birth or regenerated Nature, thou art in the Divine Harmony in Heaven. Be patient, therefore, and wait upon the Lord; and whatsoever shall befall thee, take it all from his Hands, as intended by him for thy highest Good. And so the enlightened Soul departed from it.


Doni Brinkman said...

Glad you wrote the synopsis first - Boehme is hard to read. And by the way - feeling forsaken in the "being crucified with Christ" sense - makes plain sense to me and I don't think that is heretical. ;)

Aimee said...

I wasn't sure why I suddenly woke up this morning at 3:51am. Gonna have to go with your theory about the Holy Spirit being a morning person;)! I love reading your blog Dad. It is truly inspiring and having a deep insight into your personal walk with the Lord is a true blessing.