The Truth... What is it?

Righteousness means "living in right relationships"

God's favorite human (King David), in his old age said (Psalms 37:25): "I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread." The lives of each human sit or slide along a mental & behavioral mind-set spectrum or continuum. (1) At one end is "good" and (2) at the other end is evil. The further one slides down toward "evil" (and the longer they stay there), the harder it is to get back on your own steam toward "good". BUT, there is the possibility of divine help or "steam". In this world, people exist & reside in various countries.

MAIN POINT OF THIS PAGE: Understanding how humans are meant to exist in right relationships is one of the most crucial pieces of knowledge of how to live this life on earth in The Way and with a sense of joy.

AN ANALOGY OF LIFE: In order to think "rightly" about what goes on in this world, think of each human (since ancient times) as a player at innumerable card tables with four players at each table. [#1 player] The individual (you), [#2 player] others (significant other, family, friends), [#3 player] business world, and [#4 player] government ("rules" makers and enforcers). The four players have variable skill levels. Lets say that the numerous game tables are clustered in various "casinos" (neighborhoods, communities, towns). The casinos vary in quality (implying different skill levels of the players). Imagine, now, that you are going somewhere to buy a car. The players at the "car buying" card table are: [1] the buyer (you), [2] the seller (business salespersons), [3] government (with rules & legalities), and [4] maybe an "other" person goes with you. It does not do rightness of relationshipping any good for you to be angry about how this particular card game works out. It is no different than a poker game at the casino! It is mandatory that you realize that education, advice and street smarts are the ways we gain skills to play the game of life.

JESUS = RIGHT RELATIONSHIPS (righteousness): Jesus can make the difference. The GOOD NEWS is the Gospel (good news) of Jesus the Christ (the Messiah [savior, deliverer] in at least three amazing ways). Any religion without contoversy and contradictions in its documents is likely a carefully fabricated (rather than true) religion or belief system. [See below about your/our impact on relationships as well as our originally formed/intended USA government.] Our minds are fundamental in considering what we will believe. There is a wide-open, universal invitation to us all to "join the club" (the "club" of sinners [sin defined] for whom Christ died). Yes!...Christ died for ALL! So, come on and join the club! Jesus clarified to mankind that God is filled (1) with a perfect love & (2) an unfathomable grace toward His creation (ALL of us). Jesus also (3) clarified that God, His Father, is not a hanging judge. Right relationshipping is sort of related to: "To know all is to forgive all". Coming to deal with the legalism God's chosen people had fallen into, Jesus taught with parables (a type of teaching story with a message but WITHOUT legalistic details of unmistakable exactitude...we humans often find them to be frustrating). And Jesus (4) summed up The Way to get & live the fulfilled & love-filled life with TWO commands (the new Covenant of Grace):

  • Between Human and God relationships: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your  mind." (Matthew 22:37) This aspect comes with belief in Jesus.
  • Between Human and Human relationships: "And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself'." (Matthew 22:39) This aspect can be practiced by both Jesus believer and Jesus nonbeliever.

CONTEXT: Notice that this page is not about who among us is (1) "right" [correct] about anything and (2) without sin. BUT, you must realize that the words of Jesus 2000 years ago fell on ears steeped in "suzerain" covenantal (and relational) thinking...a suzerain mindset (that is, the potentially-punishing-powerful have power over the less-powerful, who are always subject to punishment) is a type of general mindset that has even lasted into modern times. The essence of success & survival of the less-powerful was to behave, dress & look (emote) rightly (non-rebelliously...non-threateningly). And that took a very precise knowledge of what was allowed and what was not allowed. This became the basis of endless arguement and depletion of mental & emotional energy leading relentlessly toward "legalism". It was a real advantage to look out for your own self. In fact, since the N. Y. World Trade (twin) Towers went down 9/11/2001, "profiling" (looking out for yourself) has been a divisive issue in the USA. In right relationships, each party has responsibilities toward the other!

LIFE: But, life is not all about you. Even for those who do not believe in God, the Christian philosophy (useful to a non-believing follower of the philosophy) is entirely good, unifying, and uplifting of persons and society. In fact, once one removes the extremists of all world religions, don't they all call for rightly relating? In my opinion, for those wanting to move toward the greatest life of "believing", life turns out to be all about you "in Christ".

So, whether philosophically or as a true believer, life is all about right RELATIONSHIPS!

SUPERNATURAL HELP IS AVAILABLE: Through faith-filled belief in Jesus, God made a way to live The Way to an abundant life of lack of boredom and fullness of love, grace-filled-ness, & fulfillment. Toward ALL, this God (most amazingly) does not wish to be a distant God. No, He wants a shocking degree of intimacy with all of His creation. And, by His trinitarian (the Holy Trinity) personae, this absolutely perfect God is willing to even indwell a lowly human! Upon actual belief in Jesus and the salvation God delivered to mankind through the death of Jesus, there is the spiritual baptism of the Holy Spirit entering & indwelling that new believer forever. On becoming "indwelt", the person joins the Kingdom of God. This indwelling Holy Spirit is a divine power source of Whom, in the earthly life, the believer can ask for help in the (1) good vs. evil battle for your mind & heart and (2) in doing YOUR part in the abundant life of right relationships: becoming gracious & loving, selfless, and other-directed (the opposite of self-absorbed). The result can be the "abundant life" (John 10:10) of true self-esteem (rather than the modern "self esteem" promotion of what really ends up being self-absorption & self-centeredness). After you thereby trusted Jesus as Savior, Jesus never distances Himself from you! In the afterlife, this Holy Spirit "indwelling forever" adds divine perfection to one's giving & receiving the joy & complete fulfillment of existing in the presence of God (a "complete" eternal salvation). The Way provides the hope & mechanism to gradually abandon our self-centeredness and be transformed throughout life by the love & grace of God!

FAMILY: The first group that most of us remember is our biological or adoptive family. It is here that we first learn HOW to relate and the possible HELP in our life journey that might be available as we learn to relate rightly.

When the judgment comes, we do not face a hanging judge; we face our loving Father & His perfect love. BUT, human relationships ARE ALWAYS a two-way street (greatest success when the effort is directed from both persons to each other) !

CURRENT DIVISIVE ISSUES: In the USA, here are some divisive groups and issues: labor unions (work doers) vs. management/ owners (job creators); race & ethnicity (advantages vs. disadvantages...religious conflicts); political groups vs. other political groups; freedom vs conformity; educational styles; reilgions and subtypes of each; gender issues; marriage issues; age-related issues; social classes (who is "up" and "has it made" vs. who is lower and "disadvantaged"; and so on. Rather than working to unite, media of all types and "leaders" of all types appear to me to stoke the flames of divisiveness and insist on demands to legislate their favorite positions. This means (1) they are oblivious to the huge mixture of human personality types. And (2) they are ignorant of the fact that longterm changes happen and actually "stick" when gradually accomplished. But, the great human nature problemn is that, with gradualism, no one gets to claim the credit for the change in their legacy.

After fretting and brooding the situation as to society & so many of these people groups, its just too complex. These controversies even hang negatively over families and friends, inhibiting relationships (especially standing in the way of repairing injured relationships). I'm convinced that the KEY...which is difficult to understand because few promote Jesus believers & followers learning about & rebooting themselves over and over as to "RIGHT relationships". Then it just takes time. BUT that "right relation-shipping will have a much more powerful, time-reducing effect when it is in play from BOTH "sides". I'm excited to have been blessed by the ministry of Pastor Tim Bupp which gave me the tools for this insight!

SOCIETY: Jesus even says that He came to seek & save the lost (Luke 19:10). The "lost" are those who have become "down" (Jesus did NOT, however, say that others were of no interest to Him). The lost are ripe for change when they come to a point that they know & admit, first hand, that they don't have it all totally together. At The Fall (Adam & Eve), mankind was given "free will"...freedom (seen as a gift for non-fallen mankind but felt as a downfall for fallen mankind, which tends...sooner or cause each fallen individual to reassess life). (1) It is that very freedom to chose & make mistakes that finally forces a person to consider taking personal ownership of his/her negative consequences of decisions, thereby setting that person up to be receptive to the Gospel. So, group, church, town, county, state, regional or national societal organizational models & rules/customs/laws that inadvertently become (or are held up as) the target for "blame". That being so, apart from each individual taking personal blame, outward blame targets interfere with the spread of the Gospel.

The intended covenantal USA model is best (HERE) for righteous living. But it is being constantly chipped & morphed away toward a national & worldly mindset that DOES NOT emphasize individual responsibility leavened by the above emphasis on right relationships. (2) Additionally, as societal systems morph toward centrally meeting peoples' needs, individuals begin to undervalue relationships and do what they please, unmindful & uncaring about any negative effect on relationships. This distant "caring" may seem "right" and "kind" and "just" and of theoretical help, but it seriously interferes with the spread of The Way of Jesus through individuals working & living toward right relationships because of the love of God as modeled by Jesus! Jesus said (Luke11:9), "So I say to you: [1] ask and it will be given to you; [2] seek and you will find; [3] knock and the door will be opened to you." Do you see? The first of each of the 3 moves is by YOU. This is the opposite of the sequence of "the entitled". In the above sequence commanded by Jesus, you are placed in a position to be grateful & desirous of maintaining a positive, "right" relationship!

***Jesus modeled personal attention to our neighbor and did not recommend (1) defaulting to the forced extraction of the means to better relationships and (2) the delegation of that effort toward right relationships to others or to entities (especially governmental entities). The example of Jesus was & is an inter-personal example!***

For more context of this HUGE OPPORTUNITY, check HERE for "THIS IS THE DEAL" in greater detail.

We relate positively with GOD (as the Father, the Son [Jesus], and the Holy Spirit):  

  • through prayer,   
  • through consciously working toward having spiritual awareness,   
  • through fellowship with other positive believers,   
  • through study of The Word (Bible study and faith study),   
  • through regular attendance at worship services (inspiring worship, Bible study together and fellowshipping with believers),   
  • through church, community, and even broader "helping" &  stewardship,   
  • through glorifying God by actually relating in our world as Jesus would want us to,
  • and through wrestling out one's own personal investigation toward understanding of The Faith.

We relate positively with other HUMANS:

  • by understanding individualness: that all of us are different and HOW we can be different. Smalley's personality types HERE.   
  • by being realistic of what we can bring to the relationship [realistic expectations of ourselves],   
  • by being realistic of what others can bring to the relationship [realistic expectations of others],   
  • by truly understanding that each person is DIFFERENT [HERE ]!   
  • by having some understanding of at least the four basic human personalities [HERE],   
  • by learning about the details of evaluating evidence & opinions [HERE ].   
  • by (through the above gaining of spiritual awareness) learning that you are divinely enabled to relate better to others & that it takes self-will, patience, tolerance, and commitment (you must WANT to) to make them work.   
  • by learning to have GRACE toward errors & failings of those you are relating to.   
  • by staying away from SIN because sin damages relationships.
    and by avoiding signaling to the bad elements that we might be receptive to them [HERE].
  • The Golden Rule of living is the goal! 

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(posted 3 September 2011; latest addition 25 March 2015)