Donate/Tithe with Bank Deposit (direct to Mike Connell)

Pashat, Drash, Remez and Sod (1 of 4)

Shane Willard

Page 6 of 10
Like there's this one time, there's this tax collector in a tree, and there's 5,000 people behind Jesus. The one thing the 5,000 people have in common is: they hate the guy in the tree. He walks up to the guy in the tree, and He says: hey man, you come down, I'm coming to your house today. And it says Zaccheus was so moved with the compassion of Jesus, that this is what he said: Hey, I'll give half of what I have to the poor.

Jesus said: that's it, salvation's coming to him. Can you imagine their response? No! You can't say salvation's come to him. What do you have to have to be saved? You have to have an animal. You have to go to the temple. You have to talk to the priest about offering this for you. This is what you have to have to be saved.

Jesus is like: no, his heart changed. He gave half what he had to the poor; his heart had to change so salvation's come to him. They're like no! You can't say salvation's come to him. He didn't get saved our way! We would never do that would we? You have to pray OUR prayer, at OUR altar; and if you don't pray OUR prayer, OUR way, at OUR altar - then we're in and you're out.

Jesus was dealing with the same things, like there's this one time - you want something that'll change your life? Go look through every salvation experience in the New Testament. It's unbelievable the humility these people had to have. How did Paul get saved? Light appeared, knocked him off his donkey, and what did he do? He looks up and says: what must I do to be saved? Jesus said: finally you are; so Paul simply asked a question. Zaccheus gave half of what he had to the poor.

There was a lady caught in the act of adultery. They brought her out, and said: Jesus, the Torah says: stone her. What do You say? He says: okay, the Torah says stone her; I say stone her - but I also say: you can't throw stones unless you're perfect. So everybody gets tired of holding their rocks, and they put them down and they walk away. He waits until they all walk away, and He says: hey lady, where are your accusers? She says: they're not here. He said: then I don't condemn you. I don't condemn you. Why?

Because the Torah said: you had to stone someone caught in the act of adultery, but the Torah also said that you have to have two witnesses to condemn somebody. Jesus couldn't make her sin go away, so He simply made the witnesses go away - which automatically declared a mistrial - quite brilliant really.

So she answers a question; Paul asks a question, Zaccheus gives half of what he owns to the poor; the centurion says: surely He was the Son of God. There's another guying saying: be merciful to me, a sinner oh God. There's one prostitute who washes His feet with her hair. He says: your faith has forgiven all your sins.

I was raised Pentecostal. I was discipled Baptist. I went to a Presbyterian Reform Seminary, and I've been mentored by a Pentecostal rabbi for eight years. I've covered the gamut, but this story - nothing in the whole theology I've ever seen fits it. It says that Jesus was preaching, and it says that a paralysed guy got lowered in from the roof of the house, and this is what it says: and Jesus saw the faith of his friends, and proclaimed his sins forgiven! So can you get saved by having the right friends now?

The crowd there went: you can't call him saved! You can't call him forgiven! You can't do that - not based on someone else's faith. He says: so that you'll know that I have the authority to do what I want - get up and walk! Jesus is brilliant! Can you imagine if the writers of the Bible went: that doesn't fit OUR method of salvation, so therefore it can't be true, so we'll hold it out from the whole world. No, it just doesn't work. We have to be humble.