From: Timothy, a true son because of my trust.
To: Sha’ul, an emissary of the Messiah Yeshua by command of God our deliverer and the Messiah Yeshua our hope: Grace, mercy and shalom from God the Father and the Messiah Yeshua our Lord.
Paulos, you are the man!
I got your letter and I was very encouraged by it. I mean, we all need down time. Some of these Pharisee types think you need to be in the Word 24/7. What, do they think Yeshua prayed, and studied, and taught all the time? He was always going off by himself – probably to check the scores in private where he wouldn’t be disturbed.
I was talking to this guy in the congregation just the other day. He was a real Pharisee. Legalistic beyond belief! He had the gall to ask me how we could kick someone out of the church for having sex outside of marriage and not condemn worldliness in the same way. Can you believe he actually thinks that worldliness and sexual immorality are equal? If we accepted his definition of worldliness, we would have to kick out most people in the church – even us! Well, we know THAT ain’t gonna happen!
Now, we all know that there is a big difference in how God views worldliness and sexual immorality. If Ya’akov thinks “loving the world is hating God,” then why didn’t he include it in the 4 laws that Gentiles should avoid? He included sexual immorality and not worldliness. That means he must know that sexual immorality is way worse.
I am pretty sure God wants us, his children, to have fun. Christianity ain’t all that fun in the first place. Torture, being set apart, witnessing, discipleship, study, praying, stoning, Crucifixion – sheesh! Where does it all end? A guy has to have some time off to be a guy for crying out loud! I put in a 10 hour day for Yeshua. I need some down-time after a long day of working for God. What, am I going to spend my only time off working?
I think the game is going to be a good game. You are right, I think the Christians have got a good chance if they are going to give them swords to defend themselves! Bout time we got some payback! The Romans are so convinced they will win that they are planning an orgy in the stands. That is what these Pharisee types should be focusing on – the REAL sin! Maybe if they would all just focus on that, we could enjoy the game without them bothering us. Self-righteous clowns!
Pauly, I think we could alleviate this all if you would just take a stance and say or write that “worldliness is anything that we don’t like or do,” or something to that effect. It sure would end a lot of this confusion. It would make it a lot more fun to be a Christian too! It is amazing to me that people think that Yeshua wanted us to “take up our cross” and didn’t expect us to take some time for ourselves to enjoy our lives. It is obvious to anyone with common sense that he didn’t mean all the time!
Did you see that commercial about the new LaCoste phylacteries? Thinnest straps ever made. Not wide like Yeshua hated. They are expensive, but man, they are stylin! I got to get me one of them. Cool beyond belief!
We do have a problem though. We got someone in our congregation that is about ready to lose their hut. Some in our congregation think we should be helping them with the funds from the church. Take up a collection or love offering. As if!!! We got salaries to pay, videos to produce, a new media wing to pay for. (The new 90 inch high def screen in our media room is going to be awesome to watch the games on!) If we help each brother and sister that falls on tough times, we will never be able to pay for the creature comforts at the church that we all want and deserve. I know, right? I mean, do they think I should be helping them when they can’t help themselves? Where is that in the text? Yeshua let that gal pour expensive perfume on his feet instead of selling it and giving it to the poor. He said it and I’ll say it too – we ain’t going to be around here forever. Church isn’t about helping each other, it is about baptizing the unchurched. Everyone knows that! These Pharisees are nothing but Dudley Do-Rights thinking they well become righteous by the misguided application of the text that helping those less fortunate is honoring to God.
To quote your letter – “knuckleheads!”
I am going to hit the rack man. I got a budget meeting tomorrow and I want to make sure I get a cost of living raise with my salary increase. I am also pushing real hard for a new Canon Video camera like the ones they shot Gladiator with. We can really show people what a good church we are with one of them and our tithes should increase in the next year as a result of buying the camera by over 30%. The increase will allow us to build a new gymnasium for the youth.
If we started helping all the poor in our church, what would the youth do – play basketball in an old multi-purpose room?
That can’t be honoring to God!
See you at the game,
* * (This response to Sha’ul is a parody that was in response to a sermon and a service I attended and played on the worship team that day. I couldn’t even get my drum pedals before the screen behind me was playing an NFL game in the sanctuary – commercials and all)