What Happened in Vegas

I drove out to Vegas last night, getting in around midnight. After taking a room in the Mandalay Bay hotel, I walked down to the victim’s memorial on Las Vegas Blvd, finally turning in around 2 AM. I woke at 6 AM, unable to rest, and began the work that I was sent to do.

Touching the 58 crosses this morning, I was astonished by the number of young women. From some came peace and acceptance – from others the mourning of the family and communities from which they had been ripped.

That number was repeated at the Church of the Sacred Redeemer at noon. The celebrant mentioned the 58 several times.

But there weren’t only 58 dead. It’s just that one is dismissed as unworthy of concern.

Reading of Paddock’s writhing and moaning in bed, I understood his struggle. We used to talk about the “bad seed” or say the “apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” Paddock’s father transmitted a spirit of violence to him. Today, many that suffer that initiation choose not to have children for fear that they will infect them as well. Paddock may have not had children for that very reason.

At Love Returns, I write of the Earth as a honey pot that trapped selfish personalities, enabled Micha-el and his cohorts to cast them out of heaven. Rejected, they rage against humanity here on earth, driving us into self-destructive behaviors.

What I realized, as I drove without rest for five hours on Sunday night, is that they are now trapped in our minds in the same way. If we focus our will carefully, we can blow them up.

In controlling their victims, one of the memes used by demons is that God has abandoned them. I went out to Las Vegas to love our enemy – to redeem the only soul that was in doubt. For those that can’t put the pieces together, that may be for the best.

But I will testify as to this: the grace and forgiveness of the Father is unlimited. Every spirit that falls and is redeemed blazes a trail through human nature. When we peer into their darkness, they see a light shining down on them. It’s important not to leave them there alone.

Forgiveness of WHAT?

With the exception of Jesus’s ministry, the Bible really doesn’t quote God very much. It’s pretty obvious from Jesus’s example, however, that God doesn’t ask us to do anything that He wouldn’t do himself.

So what are we to infer from Jesus’s exhortation [Matt. 5:43-45]:

You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,that you may be children of your Father in heaven.

There’s a lot of really angry preaching against Satan in church, and after making this connection, I began to suggest that maybe we should think about Satan as the patient, not the enemy. People were pretty upset with me.

But Jesus came for the forgiveness of sin, didn’t he? We tend to think of that as our sin, but that follows a long progression. Think on what God tells Cain after his sacrifice is rejected [Gen. 4:7]:

If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.

Now the Hebrews eventually developed a lot of legal machinery to aid them in keeping sin away, but by Jesus’s time, it was pretty clear how that works out: the law was suborned by the monarchs and priests, and used to destroy him.

Maybe the only way to defeat sin is to declare unilateral peace, to forgive its transgression until its force has been spent against the power of the love that shines through us from God?

Christian Healing

One of the consequences of guilt is the resistance that it brings to the process of healing. When we internalize the wound of guilt, we create with our minds a bastion that cannot be reached by forgiveness.

The presumption that Humanity brought sin into the world in Eden is a universal guilt – a guilt that says Humanity is unworthy of the trust that the Divine has invested in us.

And so I must quibble with the Christian teaching that Jesus died on the cross for our sins. A sin is a sin because it leaves a wound in the soul. As Jesus loved us, so his goal must have been to heal us.

As creatures given choice, however, that is only possible if we open ourselves fully to the power of that healing. “Forgiveness of sins” is only a waypoint on that journey. It is a gift that says we do not have to be worthy of healing.

We have struggled with that lesson now for 2000 years. That guilt blocks us from healing justifies the half-truths of the Pharisees – past and present. Because guilt prevents Humanity from receiving healing, the only way to manage spiritual wounds is to make rules that prevent them from happening. Rules can only be enforced by punishment, and that eventually perverts the whole purpose of the exercise, as we wound the souls of those that do not have the strength to resist their selfish impulses.

This is the truth: he comes again when we give up control over others, and invest ourselves with the faith that the Divine power of Love can heal all. He comes for the healing.