Pesticides, ‘Hating’ Your Spouse & Kids, & A Higher Love

15 Comments
March 14, 2013

Whenever something ‘good’ is discovered, mankind usually attempts to recreate and mass produce it in large volumes. Obviously, this creates problems. The quest for money & power is usually involved somewhere in the process. Farming and crop production is an eye opening picture of this.

Organically, most crops require a certain environment and season in which to grow. This is not typically a problem unless one wants to mass produce crops. The limited seasons and locations in which some crops can be grown make ‘mass production’ impossible. As a result, mankind has learned how to genetically mutilate the DNA of these crops to enable them to crow in many seasons and environments that are not typically natural for these crops. While this might not seem like a big deal, it is. Let me give you one example, among many.

Pesticides

In their organic state, most crops naturally produce substances that keep insects away from the crops. After most crops are genetically mutilated, however, they no longer are able to naturally produce substances that keep insects away. As a result, artificial pesticides need to be created chemically to compensate. These once unnecessary poisonous substances are now sprayed over crops to protect them from insects. These poisonous chemicals are also ingested by those who eat these crops.

Without getting into too much detail, there is ample evidence of the destructive affects these chemicals are having on the human body. Many diseases and disorders have been linked to these chemicals, but that is another subject for another day. The enormous amount of money that is made in the mass production of crops and pesticides keeps this destructive practice going. Because of mankind’s desire to mass produce and make money, that which was once designed to bring life and health (in its proper context) now brings death. This is a great example of what also occurs in the religious system.

Mass Movements

In mankind’s religious system, whenever you see the masses flock to something, it’s usually an ominous sign. Due to the common evangelical mindset, however, mass numerical activity is a sign of divine blessing or sanction. Much time and attention is devoted to discovering the process of how to create or foster rapidly multiplying movements. Jesus demonstrated something quite different, however.

Jesus had the unique ability to see through all the external religious hype that people typically love. When the masses seemed to get excited about Him, He would usually say or do something that would expose reality and force them to rethink their decision to join Him.

For example, when the masses were getting excited about Jesus, He told them something that many of us today still don’t want to think about. Here is what He said:

If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. (Luke 14:26, NASB)

Wow. Some translations also say ‘despise’. Understand that He was speaking to a culture that valued ‘family’ more than anything else. He singled everyone out. To come to Him is to despise:

  • Our fathers and mothers.
  • Our spouse. (Yes, they’re included in this list too.)
  • Our children. (Yes, despite the fact that Jesus loves the little children)
  • Our earthly brothers and sisters.
  • Our own lives. (Your identity rooted in your skills, your career, your economic status, etc…)

I guarantee you that thinned out the crowds in Jesus’ day. When it’s properly understood today, it still does. Unfortunately, this passage has been misused by religious clerics throughout the years to guilt people into being unduly devoted to building their own religious ‘machines’, so to speak. Jesus did not make this statement to cause others to experience guilt or to get them to become religious ‘network marketers‘, however. Although many sermons and books are falsely written about the ‘radical‘ self denial that must occur in order to follow Jesus, the heart of what Jesus meant by ‘despising’ family was quite different.

The heart of ‘despising’ your own family

Jesus came to set people free, not to burden them with unbearable guilt. It’s very important that we understand His heart behind such statements.

After all, what kind of a child could despise their own parents without experiencing unbearable guilt?

What kind of a parent could despise their own children and not experience extreme guilt?

What kind of spouse could despise the love of their life and not feel guilt?

These are great questions. I’d like to take the liberty to paraphrase Luke 14:26 in a way that I think communicates the heart of what Jesus is saying. Bear with me:

I know you love your parents. They have taken good care of you throughout your life, and you want to please them and help them. I simply want you to know that in my kingdom (in Christ), you don’t have to worry about them anymore. The same can be said for your own children. You are free from the obligation of ‘saving’ and ‘protecting’ them. In my kingdom (in Christ), I will handle that and take good care of them. Trust me. I can now become your sole focus.

In the past, you have thought of your brothers or sisters a certain way. For some of you, you love them very much. You have been deeply connected to them, or have desired to be close to them. This is simply a shadow. In my kingdom (in Christ), I have new brothers and sisters for you that will be a million times more like ‘family’ than your brothers and sisters in the flesh could ever be to you. You have no idea how ‘unfulfilling’ your earthly family actually is until you experience my love with your new brothers and sisters.

I know that you love your spouse. There is a ‘romantic’ ideal that you have worked hard to attain and live up to. You have fantasized about the perfect spouse and marriage. I want to replace your ‘romantic’ ideal about marital bliss with something greater, however. I have a romantic love for you that will make the picture I created about this love seem like a simple picture. I have a greater and higher romantic love for you altogether. I am giving you access to this love right now. This love will put your spouse in their proper place in your life. This might seem unnerving to you at first, but this is the norm in my kingdom (in Christ). (Luke 14:26, my paraphrase)

In mankind’s religious system, Luke 14:26 is like pesticide. It removes the ‘insects’ that take away the people’s attention and devotion. It enables mass production (numerical growth) to occur through the utilization of guilt. You know what, it works. For a while. These kinds of messages sell many books about being ‘radical‘ for Christ. These kind of messages pack out ‘discipleship’ conferences, and produce mega-institutions. Like pesticides, however, they also produce disease and death.

When Luke 14:26 is properly understood in light of the New Covenant, however, it points to a whole new liberating reality. This new liberating reality (in Christ) is so different from the ways of mankind, few are able to see and desire this over the natural order of things. This is why life in Christ is not marketable to the masses, but is readily available for you. In His kingdom (in Christ), pesticides are not needed.

Pesticide free,

Jamal Jivanjee

 

Related Reading: The Shadow of Sex & Marriage, The Future of My Marriage, & A New Reality

 

Jamal Jivanjee

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15 responses to Pesticides, ‘Hating’ Your Spouse & Kids, & A Higher Love

  1. Great piece, Jamal! Going back to your wonderful post on bees being single-minded on vising flowers, etc., and not focusing on the multifaceted and wonderful results of pollination, a sister who knows a lot about honey-production told me that there is for sure the “organic” way for honey to come about, but there is also an “institutional” way to make honey. Of course, the resulting non-organic product is inferior. The price paid for using pesticides as plants grow, and then adding preservatives to make the end-product last longer on the shelf, is great and far-reaching. What is intended for life is man-handled, which then contributes to death. And why? So that people can have “more,” and those at the top can laugh all the way to the bank. As you point out, the same phenomenon occurs in religion at all levels. Futile attempts are made to mass produce Life in Christ, and the side-effect of death emerges in various forms.

  2. Andy McLoughlin March 14, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Great thoughts, Jamal- both reassuring and thought provoking. I enjoyed reading this. Hope you and the family are well :)

  3. “In Christ’ what in mans eyes is less, is actually everything. Man’s system is founded upon the visual, (numbers, facts, and images). Yet the “Way” is founded upon the internal, the inner working of grace,and the newness of Life. One can ‘produce’ large numbers, that are propped up, while the other may be numerically smaller due to it’s DNA (in Christ) it is unstoppable, contagious, and indeed organic.

    Great post bro!

  4. Sarah Koster Vaughan March 14, 2013 at 9:51 pm

    I SO want to go on a really long rant about capitalism, despotism, exploitation and excess, but I will restrain myself to keep to the actual topic… I have learned a little something gardening… I have learned that you can get a better crop nurturing a few plants well, than you can if you plant more than you are willing to take care of. I highly suspect that it is the same with ministering to people… that it may be better to devote your whole life to serving and becoming intimate with a handful of people, than with superficially flinging religious ideas onto a wide audience. I am trying to love my neighbor… just one neighbor, not all of them… I am loving her as best I can, and hoping that Jesus shines through. She is one of the MANY people who shy away from Jesus because of the ungodly acts of religious institutions.
    I am in no way saying that we should be stingy with planting seeds– we should absolutely be as liberal with flinging the seed of Christ’s love as we possibly can. Every encounter we have with others is an opportunity to love. I also think that it can be good and valid to focus our attention on just a few precious people. I don’t see any inconsistency there.

  5. Success in God’d view is qualitative not quantitative. ” You are the salt of the earth”. Jesus did not come for ” radical followers”, that’s not what He was looking for. What He came and what He was looking for was, lovers. ” he who loves……… ……. including self , more than Me, is not worthy of Me” Followers yes, but not as those nodding and agreeing amen to teachings and laws, but lovers sick with desire, abandoned embracers of Him.
    Manipulation and guilt tactics used by religious system, can never make lovers, but only the liberating work of the Spirit within, on the finished work of the cross does that. How futile to think that we can manufacture the Life of Christ. We can only produce Ishmael…
    There is the story of the two women’s. Leah the woman for which Jacob did not ask for, was very fertile NATURALY. In my opinion Leah can make a mega church in a couple of years. ….But you see, the woman who made His heart tick, was Rachel. And she was not naturally fertile. She could not bear any fruit, nada, zero, not until and when The Lord will open her womb. But oh when He opens it, Joseph comes out, and we know what shadow he stands for. Sounds familiar? ” without Me you can bear no fruit”

    • Jamal Jivanjee March 15, 2013 at 4:14 pm

      Marsela,

      I love what you said about what the Lord is looking for. He is looking for lovers. So very true. I also greatly appreciate the insight you shared regarding Leah & Rachel’s story. That’s a very rich story with a lot of implications for us. As always, I am grateful for your wisdom sister.

  6. Thanks again, Jamal for sharing your insights & words of Life! i have never met you, but feel as though we are drinking coffee together & sharing Jesus…casually & yet life changing! Thanks for your faithfulness in sharing what He is revealing to you.

  7. Anneke Reinders March 15, 2013 at 8:00 am

    Thank you so much for paraphrasing this verse, especially the word: I can now become your sole focus. Last week I heard sad news about a family member, and when I prayed for this person the Lord showed me this: you will not help him better or show more love and compassion, if you keep worrying all day long. Focus on Me, and you will be in the best condition to help and show love. This is the same “state of mind” I read about in this post. Your posts are very inspiring for me, sometimes I translate them into Dutch. My brothers and sisters are blessed as well by your insights and thoughts, there is a lot of recognition and we also are challenged and helped out from trouble sometimes. Connected in Jesus Christ, King in all parts of the world!
    Anneke Reinders
    The Netherlands

  8. Wow! You have an awesome blog!!!!

    I just got another enormous aha!
    When the fire of the Holy Spirit fell after I read the bible, starting in Matthew, three days straight, out of desperation, I was completely despising my life. I frankly wanted to die; I felt that death would be better than the way my life was. I did not think so at the time, because all my despising was being projected onto myself, hence depression, anxiety and a death wish. But now I see that I also despised of my new husband who I projected all the hurts and losses that I had ever experienced throughout my life. This was unconscious at the time, but all of a sudden the hurt I was feeling from him was fueled by the accumulation of a lifetime of parental, cultural, societal, ancestral and historical wounding of the feminine throughout time. Boy, is that a big burden to carry! No wonder marriages bite the dust when they are staggering under the weight of all that projected pain, suffering, grief, loss, darkness, wounds and trauma from both husband and wife’s personal traumatic history and the historical collective unconscious! It was a perfect storm! Now I see that despising is the step before following Jesus and now I know why he poured his Spirit out on me in my most despicable and despising hour. Thank you for your Wisdom, Understanding and Insight! I greatly appreciate it! To God be the Glory!!!!!
    http://www.newheavenonearth.wordpress.com

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