Forum Bullies and Abusers

narcissist chicken

This is a letter which was posted on a forum which is now defunct. But I wanted to have this letter up because the cult which we used to belong to destroyed the forum not once but twice.  While this is neither here nor there for us because we had our own blog going to expose the abuses of this cult since 2006 (Tales from the Crypt), there will be many who will lament the forum’s passing.

We put this letter up last year and within a few months the forum had been hacked.  They don’t like being exposed, moreover, they don’t like being told off publicly.  Mild conversation about the cult’s activities was acceptable, almost, but having the temerity to take on one of their cult imposters was too much for them evidently.

This is one for all the cult survivors in Brisbane and Australia, and well, let’s just say everywhere.

An Open Letter To An Anonymous BCF Member who abuses the name of the prophet Haggai,

I have been reading your posts for the last six years. Not a lot has changed. You ask the same questions over and over in different ways.

Are you genuinely expecting people here to adjust their glasses, take a good long look at you and say ‘My but that boy knows what he is talking about, I must consider what he says’.

I am sorry but that isn’t going to happen.

You set yourself up as an antagonist right from your first post.

Anybody who sings the praises of the elders in this place is going to be treated to the same response from the people here.

You have absolutely no understanding of human nature. You think that you can come here and have an impact but all you are doing is providing grist for the mill, proof that the BCF eldership are malicious and eternally vengeful and that sending you here to taunt and provoke is just another ploy from them.

No, you will tell us, you are an independent agent, not an agent of the elders. But you told us that you were yourself in your first paragraph, and have reiterated that over and over.

I saved your first post all those years ago so that I could analyse it for myself. I kept it just in case, and it is proving to be an interesting journey going back to look at who you used to be and comparing it to who you are now.

I normally only read on this forum, but I finally decided to share what I have learned with the forum.

Here is a reminder of what you wrote back then, six years ago.

I currently attend BCF. I do not in any way, shape or form represent BCF. I am involved in the youth program and have committed myself to a life of discipleship and training under the hands of the eldership of the lamp at BCF among the wider Lampstand of Restoration Fellowships International. No-one has asked me or influenced me to contact this group (or similar). In fact, when speaking casually with some of the elders here, they advise me to tread carefully in what I read and see (after watching the Four Corners program on ABC). Again, let me say, I am not their representative.

Now that I’ve got the disclaimer out of the way … What is the issue here?

I understand everyone has their own reasons for leaving the church (as with any church) but why label it a cult? Why create a forum to share past experiences of leaving said cult? and why praise the efforts of those who have left? … would you do the same for a mainstream Baptist, Pentecostal or Catholic church? I am keen to demystify any confusion about BCF and related churches through scripture. The word of God is true. If this is not the foundation of your faith, then how can you call yourself a Christian?

Now, although I have grown up in this church, I am not familiar with the likes of books that ex-bcf-ers would have read at the time of their leaving. I am not going to try defend statements or quotes from text that I most probably haven’t read. I am in the age bracket of 17-25, so please, state your disagreements and I will try to reply with scripture or if what you claim to happen, in reality, doesn’t I will let you know. I will try to keep an open mind to each reply that comes.

I do not endeavour to bring you back to xCF (although if I have that impact I’d be joyed) … I wish to remove the hostility between our church and your families for aren’t we One Body of Christ. When we get to heaven will there be a section for the baptists, another for the Jews, another for the Catholics etc … each denomination believes that they are the true church. I cannot change that mindset, however I can attempt to remove barriers – especially those barriers which block family members.

Also, just another disclaimer, I will not be checking this all the time. Probably a few times a week – depending on the amount of responses. I have set it to send me an email as replies come in, but I am busy and replying on this forum needs to be crafted to maintain scriptural accuracies so I need time to research

When I read this post six years ago I analysed it carefully, tore apart its semantics and quickly came to a number of conclusions. It is full of plot holes, inconsistencies, contradictions and just plain old bluster. It is the work of a genuinely deluded, arrogant and objectionable person who ignores completely anything which doesn’t line up with his own confident analysis of a situation. Nothing more is needed in your head than for the people of this forum to line up with their grievances so that you can solve all their problems for them. Moreover, and this underscores your insolence perfectly, you will tell the members of this forum if what they think happened actually happened. In other words, you will be the author of their reality. If that doesn’t scream abuser, I don’t know what does.

What’s really scary is that you haven’t changed.

Six years on and you are still spouting the same palaver with the same attitude clearly expecting that if you shout at the forum loudly enough for long enough people will listen to you.

So how is that working for you then?

What you have never understood is that people here have been beaten down, broken and abused. In fact, YOU have been broken down, beaten and abused. The difference is that you don’t know it yet. Your mind has been taken over, your heart and conscience seared and your emotions crippled. You have never known what it is like to live free from oppression. I am sorry for you.

But when you come here, you take on the identity of your abusers and out of your mouth comes the malicious abusive words we are so used to.

Do not expect that anything will change until you leave BCF.

You think you can keep coming here and doing your multiple personality disorder dance, now an abuser, then an apologist, again feeling sorry for yourself and sucking up to people, and then back to being an abuser.

People here are sick and tired of watching that dance. They LEFT their respective fellowships to get away from that, but Satan is making sure that you are going to never let them forget that he is always in there trying to bruise our souls, to steal our faith and destroy our relationships one more time.

You keep asking why people are here talking about what happened to them?

Seriously?

There is only one reason why anyone would ask that sort of a question, and that is to engage people in defensive argument. Get people on the defensive and you can control them because you are the one asking the questions.

It’s a good ploy, but it has nothing to do with engaging people in genuine relationshjp.

But you don’t know how to do that.

We do, because we had relationships before BCF, and we knew what that was all about, and we developed relationships out of BCF as we recovered.

Again, I am sorry that you were born into such a screwed up toxic environment.

But then again, you come here and abuse people.

People want to show you compassion here, I have seen it, I have felt their hearts as they have tried to talk to you. Sometimes it looks as you write that you recognise that too. But then you go back to abusing them and asking really really offensive and dumb questions.

You are too screwed up to be allowed to be let loose on a forum like this.

I still would like to know why you haven’t been tossed off by now.

But then on the other hand, you have never actually joined the forum have you.

Six years and counting and you are still a ‘guest’. It speaks volumes about your inability to let go of your loyalties to your masters and simply just talk to people about yourself. Your real self.

That’s what everyone else does.

But you don’t have a real self. You just have a series of tapes which go on in your head telling you what to say here and what to do there.

You hear these words so much they mean nothing to you. Yet when somebody says something to you that you don’t like, you complain about being ‘kicked in the guts’.

Then you get people apologising for ‘kicking you in the guts’ when all they did was speak the truth. It’s fun isn’t it. All you need to do is sqwark and people will tell you that they didn’t mean to hurt you. People do that because they know what its like to hurt, they have empathy. But you already know that don’t you. You know how to manipulate people, that is what you have been taught by your masters.

People only need to apologise for sin against you, and nobody here has sinned against you.

You have sinned against them.

You have come here questioning their authenticity, speaking with an assumed authority, telling them that they have no love, that they don’t treat you well, that you are not being respected or words to that effect. But you have absolutely no genuine respect for anyone here because you keep sinning against them. You keep abusing them, you keep saying the same ugly things.

You tell us that you are a disciple of the BCF elders but that you don’t in any way shape or form represent BCF. A disciple represents his master, and even more importantly the Greek term for “disciple” in the New Testament is mathetes, which means more than just “student” or “learner.” A disciple is a “follower,” someone who adheres completely to the teachings of another, making them his rule of life and conduct. When scripture tells us to ‘make disciples of all men’ Jesus is saying that we are to make men into His disciples, NOT the disciples of the preacher or elder.

Your colours have been flying openly since your first post and your allegiances are evident. You still tell us that ‘you just love those guys’. You haven’t changed your slave status. Therefore everything you say and do will be a walking, talking testimony to the elders of BCF, those ugly and barbaric individuals who have spiritually raped and tortured their flock for decades.

Unfortunately, and you won’t realise this because you are deceived, but you can’t come onto a forum of abuse survivors as the spokesperson of the people who abused them (despite your protestations to the contrary) and then tell them how to live their lives. Anyone outside of BCF would not even have to be told that.

Six years later and you still haven’t learned.

I have news for you. Jesus is the good shepherd who will find the lost and hurting ones and heal them. Luke 4 says that Jesus came to heal the broken-hearted, to set the captives free and to free us from oppression. He is the one doing the work that is necessary. Anything you attempt to do in his stead is going to not only be purely of the flesh, but is going to cause more harm.

But here is the thing.

Anybody on this forum is more than capable of pulling apart every word you speak and telling you how you are wrong, wrong and even more wrong. But it would make no difference. You live to debate. You will not be convinced by argument and you will not listen to people who know more than you do. You cannot understand what other people have experienced because you have no imagination nor any empathy. You can’t put yourself in other people’s shoes, and you don’t want other people’s experiences to affect or inform you in any way at all. The only people you will listen to are the one to whom you are enslaved to. Paul tells us in Romans 6:16

Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness”

You obey the elders, you are their slave.

You are also placing men in the place of the Holy Spirit, which makes you an idolator. Idolatry has always been a grievous sin in God’s eyes. You should also know that idolators will not inherit the kingdom of God and since you are so fond of referring to the judgement seat of Christ, you need to consider the words of your own epithet. (1 Corinthians 6:9)

Or as Paul puts it in 1 Corinthians 10:

Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. 7 And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.”[a] 8 Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; 9 nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; 10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 11 Now all[b] these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come.

12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.

While I am at it, Jesus also said that you can’t serve two masters because you will love the one and hate the other. You can’t serve God and Vic Hall, and Vic Hall does not serve God. Therefore you will hate God and everything that is connected to God. You hate those who have left BCF because BCF is not of God and those who have left are proclaiming that fact. This forum is a means to proclaim that truth, and therefore you hate this forum and all who are on it.

This forum was taken down by Vic Hall’s computer wiz kids (sounds like children with bladder problems). But another weapon in his arsenal is the spy who infiltrates. You have infiltrated this forum, in the same manner that the snake infiltrated the garden.

Rather that you face the ugly truth here with your insults and arguments and inane questions than go to your death never having heard it. Some people have sat in BCF their whole lives and never even heard the gospel. You need to hear the truth, and if it hurts, that is good! It is the kind of hurt that will set you free if you let it. It’s the pain of being born son. Embrace it!

If you can’t relate to us from the reality of your own soul, then all you are doing is throwing fire crackers into an open flame. You just want reactions, you want argument and you want to annoy and frustrate the good people of this forum to the point that they try every means they have at their disposal to try and either reason with you or appeal to your heart. Which is a shame because you are neither open to reason nor emotional appeal.

A person who is deluded and as abusive as you has only one option open to them.

You need to be a) born again and b) filled with the Spirit and then you will be able to speak with wisdom and show compassion and mercy, two qualities which you have never in the last six years shown any evidence of.

Ever.

I don’t see a brother in Christ.

I don’t see a man who knows what its like to experience the joy and the freedom of relating intimately with his Lord and Saviour and who understands the joy of relating to others in the Spirit.

You know a lot of stuff, you can argue with the best of them, your head is filled with information. You come on this forum and swagger and bluff your way around. Its’ why you get people angry, because you like the attention.

But it’s also why you don’t want to meet anyone face to face or pick up the phone and talk as some here have suggested you do. That would break the spell wouldn’t it?

You can write till your fingers cramp, but your heart is as cold and as hard as the hearts of the Pharisees. Like the Pharisees, you want people to look up to you. You are covetous of position and influence and actually, just power.

So you come onto this forum and you survey what is here and what people are saying and you figure you have us all summed up. We are an easy target. Victims who seek to assert themselves and give themselves a voice generally are. Forums are an even easier place to pick off prey. Everyone at the water hole is distracted because they are there to find refreshment. The predator on the other hand is there to fill his belly.

I have seen men like you on every possible page of the internet, and in particular on pages where there is an emphasis on intellectualism and the use of language to destroy not only your opponent’s argument but your opponent’s soul.

I have seen men who purport to come from the Calvinist tradition, the Baptist tradition, the Jewish tradition, the Pentecostal tradition and even the Emerging church who out of all of these traditions has made huge headway by redefining the language most Christians are used to. Except they move the goalposts every time they want to score a point against somebody else. These are all the things that you do. All of these men do the same thing, they turn the word of God into a weapon aimed at their fellow believers, and they then turn their sights on demolishing other people so they can emerge the victor.

Anyone who isn’t bamboozled by language can look at these poor sad wretches with their keyboards and their computer brains and realise that these guys know absolutely nothing about real relationships.

Because if they did, they would not be making love to their keyboards, they would be relating to their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.

But here’s the thing. You don’t recognise us as being part of the body of Christ. You won’t admit this on screen because that would be too much like being vulnerable. But your lords and masters have dismissed us the way they do everyone who leaves. They hate people who leave and they must destroy our reputations to the people left behind. So they tell us that we are ‘not of them’. They tell us that we will suffer terrible consequences for leaving. They say these things with blank voices and passive faces and condemn us to hell and then wipe their mouths and move to the next meal.

But we are survivors. We deserve a damn medal for what we have survived, we have been bloodied and burned and trashed beyond recognition some of us, you need to take off that mask and have a look at some of the people who have left your lovely never land. I have seen people your age in shopping malls who have left. Young men who spent their whole lives in BCF and finally couldn’t take it any more. They look like the walking dead. They look like recovering drug addicts with tormented pale faces and sunken eyes, some needing anti-depressants to keep going, others simply morphing into unbelievers. They go from being happy clappy conformists to the Vic-culture of BCF, and become what they truly are when they leave. They were never changed so when they left they left as they were born, unbelievers. Not everyone goes through this, but enough do, and I have seen them and my heart goes out to them. They are lost, orphans and wanderers. And Vic will sit back, pleased as punch with his ‘discipline measures’. He has sent them to the devil. The trouble is, they were never Christians to start with. They were given just enough of the gospel to immunise them against the truth, and when they were no longer given the blue pill, when they no longer swallowed the kool aide, they looked at the world as it really is and despaired.

We have all been through the devastation, some have emerged less scathed than others. Myself and my family are doing pretty well now. But for many years after we left there was simply existence, not life.

God is blessing us mightily. We are learning so much, the Holy Spirit is baptising my children, who are all well into adulthood now. But they are growing and changing into the likeness of Jesus Christ. My children, all about your age, were born into BCF too. But we left before they were old enough to be pummelled by anyone else. They left before they were loaded into the cattle-cars and into the concentration camps of young adults or teenagers. I truly feel sorry for you. You have been through a great deal.

But coming here and trashing the faith, hopes and heroic efforts of my brothers and sisters in Christ is NOT OK.

You need to do what you said you were going to do. You need to leave.

And NOT come back here.

We have recognised our own foolishness in being ensnared by fear of man and we will not do it again.

But you, all you have is the endless, agonizing and hopeless quest for attention and recognition from your ‘fathers in the faith’. They drop you a few breadcrumbs from time to time, and your ego does the rest. It doesn’t take much for young men like you and in fact the more men like you suffer from pride and vanity, the louder and more aggressive you become. It is a whole lot of spiritual chest beating, In your case, your position is so untenable that you have to come to a forum where people are empowering themselves with encouragement and support from their own experiences and browbeat everyone into submission to yourself.

You need to stop it.

I rebuke you in Jesus name demon over the life of this young man.

I rebuke you and command you to leave him alone and allow Jesus to speak to him and change his heart from a heart of stone to a heart of flesh.

Do not come back here demon. You are not welcome, and I will continue to pray against the works of the enemy in your life and coming against the lives of the people here.

I pray that your ears and eyes are opened to the truth.

What difference does any of this actually make to you I might ask?

How Satan Works

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Be sober, be vigilant; because[c] your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 10 But may[d] the God of all grace, who called us[e] to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.  (1 Peter 5:8-11)

The overriding means by which Satan works is described in Scripture. He prowls around like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, the enemy has come to steal, kill and destroy.

Prowling suggests stealth and predation. He is looking for those who are the weakest so that he may devour them.

A roaring lion is declaring his territory. We know that demons or fallen angels have their own geographical areas over which they have been given authority. Their authority however is limited to the demonic realm. They can influence and affect human beings and also enter into them and control them and in this way they have power over what humans do. Most heinous crimes are not committed by human beings on their own, they are willing accomplices to demonic plans and purposes. Sometimes this happens without their knowledge but never without their consent. I am not talking about Satan worshippers, I am talking about ordinary human beings who willingly engage in sin which opens the door to the demonic realm and creates strongholds which then turn into gateways for demonic beings and their associates to come in and take hold of that human being. And the last state of the man is worse than the first.

Satan told Jesus Christ that he could give Him the kingdoms of the earth if He fell down and worshipped him. The absolute arrogance and foolishness of this statement proves that Satan himself is deceived. He is deluded, he is insane. He was in eternity before the throne of God leading the worship of God, and here he is demanding that Jesus worship him. Mostly of course his methods are not this direct and confrontational. I have heard stories of believers who have met with Satan in this kind of way, but they are few and far between. Usually we have to deal with subtle or else not so subtle attacks.

So Satan is about stealing that which does not belong to him. He is about murdering, or taking life and he is about destroying. He not only destroys and kills those who are under his power, he destroys and kills Christians, as the many thousands of martyrs over the centuries will attest to. I don’t believe Satan has been given power over the church in the way that he will have over the saints during the Tribulation for example. I think those who have been killed as martyrs for the faith were a small percentage of the church and those ones will receive a greater reward for their suffering in heaven. I think causing death is probably not something God allows for every Christian, only those who are appointed to it as the apostles and others were. On the whole, Satan wishes to destroy but is thwarted by God as in the case of Job. There are many other examples of believers who have been saved from death by angels or just circumstances which change. I have read many stories of those who were saved from certain death simply by listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit and changing their travel plans for example.

Following are ten methods which I have found in my own life and the lives of others I have known that Satan uses to steal, kill and destroy the work of God and the people of God. This list is by no means exhaustive, but I thought it was kind of fun to be alliterative. Please add your own entries to the list in the comments section. I would love to hear from you.

Deception – either counterfeiting that which is of God or changing the gospel so that the power of God’s word is void because the Word which was brought by Jesus and the apostles is not being taught. Scripture tells us that the power of the Word of God is unto salvation. This is not possible if the actual word of God is not being taught.

For example, if it is taught that Jesus is not the Son of God, or God himself, and simply a ‘good teacher’, and there is some other way of entering heaven, or finding God the creator/father, then this is a false gospel. It has no power, except to deceive, and deception as the means Satan uses to enslave human beings is extremely powerful.

Jesus told his disciples to be careful that they would not be deceived.

Discouragement – causing doubt and fear to come upon the believer

Despair – causing the believer to cease believing

Dismemberment – attempting to pull apart anything that is knit together, such as families, marriages or congregations

Devolution – attempting to cause the work of God to go backward to its original state or cease to exist

Derangement – attempting to cause the work of God to be disjointed or to cease working in a way which brings glory to God

Dissolution – attempting to dissolve groups or communities completely so they no longer exist as such

Disunity – creating discord and ill feeling amongst the body of Christ

Distraction – causing individual believers or groups to lose focus on what God has called them to do, usually with the things of the world. The things of the world are designed to distract us from the things of God.

Deadly Sins – Causing the believer to be overwhelmed with the weight of sin and causing them to be so filled with doubt that they do not come to Jesus to be washed and forgiven.

McChristianity

 

 

 

Macdonalds’ is of course the most successful fast-food restaurant in the world. It has outlets in every city in every suburb of every city in the western world, and it extends into areas like China and Russia which would have been impossible a few years ago. Macdonalds’ food is not high quality. That has never been in dispute. However, it sells. That is the main point. Macdonalds are not out to bring health and wellbeing to every person in the world, they are out to make a profit at the expense of the health of everyone who eats their products which famously have so much sugar in them they really should be considered confectionary.

With McDonald’s, it isn’t about content, it is about giving people what they want; fast comfort food laced with sugar and salt. We have grown up on Macdonald’s, we continue to take our children, and we are not teaching them that this food is bad for you, we are inculcating our children with the idea that family and Macdonald’s goes together. Therefore the emotional hook is laden with cheeseburgers and sundaes. Or did you want fries with that.

This business model of giving people what they want has been adopted by the church. Like Macdonald’s, they have sacrificed what is good and right on the altar of worldly success.

What began as something which Jesus himself proclaimed was sought by the few who could afford to give everything they had to buy it has become a cheap knock-off. The gospel has become today’s fake gold cartier watch being sold on stands in the street for $20.00. Anybody who thinks they can buy genuine cartier for $20 is clearly ignorant of the facts. Likewise, anybody who thinks that they can purchase the pearl of great price cheaply or for nothing is also ignoring the facts. Yet so many Christians today are flocking to a fake gospel which presents cheap knock-offs of the original simply to pull in the thousands to their churches in order to be entertained with music, comedy, emotional appeals to their pocket books, the lie that they can partake in something valuable and meaningful for the small price of 10% of their income plus whatever amount they want to give to the building programme.

McChristianity has fooled the millions who believe that partaking in the Kingdom of God can be had cheaply. Yet the gospel tells us that if we want to follow Jesus we must take up our cross and follow him. We are called to lay down our lives, not try and save them or we will in fact lose our lives. This is not a paradox, it is a truth. Our lives are not to be saved at the expense of our souls. We do not belong to this earth, and the sooner we realise that the greater will be our commitment and sacrifice to Jesus our Lord.

Searching For The Body

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Mark 5 (New King James)

36 As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, He said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not be afraid; only believe.” 37 And He permitted no one to follow Him except Peter, James, and John the brother of James. 38 Then He came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and saw a tumult and those who wept and wailed loudly. 39 When He came in, He said to them, “Why make this commotion and weep? The child is not dead, but sleeping.”

40 And they ridiculed Him. But when He had put them all outside, He took the father and the mother of the child, and those who were with Him, and entered where the child was lying. 41 Then He took the child by the hand, and said to her, “Talitha, cumi,” which is translated, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” 42 Immediately the girl arose and walked, for she was twelve years of age. And they were overcome with great amazement. 43 But He commanded them strictly that no one should know it, and said that something should be given her to eat.

John 11 (New King James)

Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. It was that Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.”

When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”

Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when He heard that he was sick, He stayed two more days in the place where He was. Then after this He said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.”

The disciples said to Him, “Rabbi, lately the Jews sought to stone You, and are You going there again?”

Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world. 10 But if one walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.” 11 These things He said, and after that He said to them, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.”

a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

Luke 24

Now on the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they, and certain other women with them,[a] came to the tomb bringing the spices which they had prepared. But they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. Then they went in and did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. And it happened, as they were greatly[b] perplexed about this, that behold, two men stood by them in shining garments. Then, as they were afraid and bowed their faces to the earth, they said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen!

Have you ever noticed how many bodies are spoken of in the New Testament?

There is of course the literal body of Christ. We know that Jesus’ body was laid in a tomb, but on the third day, when Mary and the others went to the garden, the Angel asked why they look for the living among the dead. It must have been a wonderful and joyful shock to know that He whom they loved and had mourned for was now alive.

Then there is the body of Christ which is the body of believers both past present and future. We who believe, love and obey the Lord Jesus Christ are the temples of His Holy Spirit, and belong to Him. We are the ones Paul mentioned when he talked about each of us being members of one another (Romans 12), and that no member of the body can say to another ‘we have no need of you’. (1 Corinthians 12).

In both cases, the body of Jesus is a living and breathing being. It is not dead. The Spirit of God dwells in each believer and causes his once dead spirit to become alive to the mind of Christ, to the will of the Father and to the voice of the Holy Spirit.

There are of course other bodies.

The bodies of Jairus’ daughter and Lazarus.

It’s really interesting that both in the case of Jairus’ daughter and Lazarus, Jesus mentioned that these were not bodies, but they were people who were merely asleep. Nobody believed Him of course. They laughed at him in the case of Jairus’ daughter. But Jesus knew what he was talking about. A sleeper is someone who is in fact still alive. They are unconscious to the world around them and will shortly wake up and once again be ‘alive’ to the world. Dead people and sleeping people have much in common bar one important distinction. Dead people do not wake up.

Spiritually speaking, the dead are not ‘awake’ to the reality of God. ‘Let the dead bury the dead’ said Jesus to the young man who wanted to follow him. In other words, those who are not willing to follow Jesus, who do not come to Him and look to Him for salvation are dead to the kingdom of God. We who are alive in our spirits are no longer dead. So, those who believe in Jesus, those like the woman with the issue of blood, Jairus and his daughter, Mary, Martha and Lazarus do not die, they merely sleep. Paul also referred to those believers who sleep in 1 Corinthians and 1 Thessalonians.

Interestingly, in both the case of Jairus and Lazarus, Jesus delayed his coming. He saw the faith of those who asked him to heal, but he knew that in both cases it was God’s will that instead of a healing there should be a raising of the body to the glory of God. Many didn’t believe that he could raise a dead body. There were not just cautions from people who cared about Him, “Lord he has been dead four days”, but there was mocking laughter from those who thought Jesus was a bit loopy. Jesus answer to the mocking was to ‘put them all outside”. He removed the mockers and spoke to the family. This was their home. This was their daughter and he spoke with compassion and concern. After he raised their daughter to life, he told them to feed her. I think this is also significant. A body which has recently died and then resurrected needs nourishment and care in order to continue living. Jesus did not raise this little girl to see her fail from lack of food. The parents were probably so overjoyed that they forgot about the practical things. She had probably not eaten for days due to the sickness, and now here she was pulsing with new life, and ready to partake of the energy and goodness which sustenance gives us.

I find it really poignant that in this chapter, Jesus heals a woman with a flow of blood and who has a deep faith that even touching his garment will heal her. She had life flowing from her, for life is in the blood, yet her faith moved her to seek out Jesus, even after he had been summoned by somebody else for the healing of someone probably much more severely affected. This lady didn’t want to draw attention to herself, probably because she would have been unclean and she didn’t want Jesus to have to touch her and thereby become unclean himself. What she didn’t know was that Jesus would not have been unclean from touching her and it was her faith which drew power from Him in order that she should be healed. This is a beautiful picture of weakness and impoverishment from illness which is wonderfully healed by Jesus without even his conscious partaking in it. It was her faith which made her whole.

Later, He looks for faith from Jairus’ family in order that he might be able to raise their daughter from the dead. In my opinion faith is sorely needed in the church today.

The church in this country is sick and dying. It has an issue of blood. It is not only weakened by this flow of life, but it is unclean because of this flow, and it needs to come to Jesus in faith and be healed. Like the Jairus family, the church also needs to be regenerated.

We have been searching for the body of Christ for some time. He was raised from the dead by the Holy Spirit. He now sits at the throne of the Father, but his body, we, the sheep of His pasture, are all of us going our own way. We not only need to return to the lover of our souls and the good shepherd, but we need his resurrection power to return us to the place of true and genuine commitment to each other and to the ministry of the Holy Spirit through each and every one of us, that’s men women and children, in and through us.

The women of the body need to step out in their Spirit giftings. They need to know they are accepted as equals by their brothers, so that they may be able to preach the gospel, share what God has given them with the rest of the body and not tethered to the traditions of men and religion and forbidden with sour and bitter remonstrations not to preach or teach because Jesus doesn’t allow it.

Since when does Jesus not allow his sisters in the Lord to walk in the Spirit, to hear the voice of God and to speak the word which they hear in their hearts? If those words happen to be words of encouragement, prophecy, wisdom, teaching or edification, then such is the will of the Holy Spirit and he should not be blocked, or He will be offended. If a woman has a heart for the body of a carer and a helper, should she be stopped because of her sex and made to sit in the pews and wait while another more acceptable, male, member of the body do the ministering? None of this even makes sense!!

No, the body of Christ is less than what it is meant to be. Mainly because of the headstrong stubborn and wicked hearts of human beings who prefer to remain bound in their own doctrines and religious traditions. We are all one in Christ!!! The body is all around us, yet she is ill and needs to be not only healed, but risen from the dead!