20050629

romans rewrite project :)

a few years ago i posted a "rewrite of book of romans" - i liked it, but felt is was not where what it needed to be. i have been praying over "rewriting the rewrite" for a while, and finally am getting around to it - here is the first chapter.

i have taken the liberty [and i know some will be very angry at me for this] to remove all the "third person" stuff i could think of [not being an english person i am never sure i did it right] - and replace it with first person [either single or plural] - i felt that this would make it more "personal" - i would love to know what you think - so, please leave a comment and share your voice - but be kind :).

Roman 1
FOLLOWING GOD:
Hey, this is Paul, an enthusiastic follower of The Way and of Jesus the Christ coming to you on assignment, with all the backing of the other disciples to share with you all that God is doing, and will do, with His people. I write this letter to all of God's friends in Rome.

God's story contains the thinking of those who God shared with in the past about His Son, you know, the fact that he was related to David and he is the Son of our God. The Spirit of God showed this when Jesus was raised from the dead, showing he was the Christ and our one true Master. Because of this, we received the fantastic gift of life and of spreading the great Story of who Jesus is and what he did for us personally. This gift of forgiving of wrongs and giving us eternal life, in a truly transformed way, made you who you are today, and I greet you with all the love of that gift from God and Jesus the Christ, the one I follow.

First, I have to express my thanks for you just being you. Tons of people are telling me about you and your strong desire to follow the teaching of Jesus. God, who we love, give honor too, and serve each and every day, knows that I talk to Him each and every day, for all of you. What do I talk to God about? I always ask for a clear message, that and the ability to visit you all again. It seems that the longer I am away from you, the deeper my pain. I desire to visit because I see this as a great learning experience: you learning from me, and yes, me learning from you.

It never seems to fail, every time I pack and get ready for a road trip, something happens and I am unable to get going. It's enough to drive you crazy. I know that it would be an incredible experience to get connected with all of you, as it has been for me with so many other towns and communities where I share the teaching of Jesus. As I mentioned before, something always comes up to stop it from happening. But something has always come up and prevented it. What I find most exciting about this faith is that no matter whom I meet, those who are nice or snotty, those who are smart or slow, add to and deepen my understanding of faith and my walk in the Way - each and everyone adds to my faith. That is one of the main reasons I strongly desire to hook up with you as soon s I can, and share and grow in the incredible story given to us by God.

Nothing makes me happier than to share the story of the Way, and the great plan God has for everyone's life. That plan? Trust in God, make a decision to follow Christ and be rescued from all the garbage life is tossing your way. God has this incredible way of getting people on the right path -- right with Him, right with life, right with each other. God's way of hooking people up is found squarely in the reality of His teachings: "Those who let go, and let God really live."

EITHER GOD LEADS, OR WE FALL:
Let's be honest, people [that is you and I] lie, cheat, and steal. When we lie, cheat, and steal, we sometimes think we are pulling one over on God. But God cannot -- and will not -- be ticked. It is in this human condition, [our "self-importance"] where we disconnect with God. But we can reconnect with God at any time by opening our eyes and seeing the plan He has for our lives. We sometimes think we can hide the truth from others; but the reality of this is that followers of the Way have been able to see through such garbage and find God way - all we had to do is look. When we take a deep look at all of what God has done, we always see GodÂ?s hand at work. We see this in the expressions of life, in life eternal, and mostly in the divine mystery of just being. Because of this, excuses don't hold water. You see, we like to play games and cut deals. We knew, and know, God's plan - we have to face it, itÂ?s in our bones -- but we ignore His desires for our life, because we see a quick and limited gain. We pretend to have all the answers, but we simply donÂ?t have a clue. We mix culture with faith and screw it all up every time. Then, when someone says something, we pretend to not know what we're talking about or we misquote Scripture to support our view. Like "Christian Merchants" who peddle "Jesus Junk" in "Christian Bookstores," we are willing to sell it all for some cheap crap we can get from any roadside stand with a smiley face and a "Jesus Loves You" slogan on it.

So in effect, God said, "Cool. If that's what you want to do, go for it." But, it was those actions that caused us to live in a dump, filled with garbage both outside and inside. We kicked out all the good stuff God had for us for a few pennies, some fast times, and maybe a little pleasure. We took the true God and flipped Him for a fake god, and how we just loved and worshiped that fake god. We traded the God who created us for the god who created nothing. It's amazing how little we have, because of how little we give.

But worse was to come. You see, when we disconnected from God, we disconnected from our humanity; that's right, by not knowing God, we did not know ourselves -- men and women mixed their sexual roles and all kinds of sexual abuse started to happen. We confused lust with love -- lust coming from our human-made god, love coming from the one true God. Empty of God, empty of love, we soon found that our lives were empty godless wrecks.

What was the most interesting is that because we didn't even acknowledge God's existence, God didn't acknowledge us either and let us run ragged. Over time it hit the fan big time; people killing, evil running all over the place, stealing what we could get and killing for what we wanted. Gossip and vicious backstabbing were natural for all of us. We became vicious, cruel, mean-spirited, hell bound, lying, backstabbing, and envious creeps who cared for no one but ourselves. No sooner was one lie created than we found a way of creating another. We would get rid of our parents if they got in the way -- we were stupid, slimy, bloodsucking creeps with no redeeming qualities. We knew from the start we were spitting in God's face, but we didnÂ?t care. WhatÂ?s even more amazing is we honored the people who were best at spitting in the face of God.

3 comments:

Jason said...

Brother. I am encouraged by your passion for Christ. I must say that as I read through this re-write, I was filled with compassion.
But, I also started to become concerned for all of us Christ-followers. For me, I have so much to learn- I am but a fool trying my best to "let God live in me". It is as if I am shoe asking God to put his foot in, but every time he does I somehow fail him. I either am too small for his large foot and cry out to him in pain while my threads stretch and my sole buckles screaming, "I am sorry Lord, it hurts too bad. I am just not strong enough to support your foot today. Use me, but please, don't abuse me any more. I am falling apart here, ya know?". Or worse, sometimes his foot fits perfectly. We are walking along and everything is groovy , but suddenly I loose traction on the path he is walking and slip a little to the left or the right- totally soiling my fabric (God only wears clean shoes ya know.)
But Moreover, I am concerned for all of us. I feel your push for change in the Church, Brother; your effort to emerge it to true Holy service. And I want you to know that I am right there with you. I am. But, I feel that where we are pushing on certain points, we do so urgently, without patient endurance (I say we, because it does indeed "take one to know one"). And this can be discouraging for those of who are already feeling or living empty lives in the Body. This does not mean we scratch at them, for that is far too abrasive, right? We must message their aching, and in doing so, build our own strength with them. For we are one body right? And I know from my experiences with the flesh body, if one part is not in order the whole body is feeling it and is therefore less effective.
I am very excited to read fture enstallments of your development upon Romans and hopefully Hebrews next- that whole "real heavenly truth" thing. I know you have the gifts to offer real insight into emergant understanding of texts from antiquity. Grace and Peace Brother. Jason S. Email- usafdesertfox@hotmail.com

kevin h said...

I rewrote Galatians, once. Might have to see if I can find it. :D

Jason said...

Excellent. Yeha find that bad boy and let's read it.