GOD A MODELER
A lot of people have gotten hung up on the word "Modeling". They act like this is unnatural and something man is doing apart from God.
When these people say this, they are showing their ignorance and, possibly, their hypocrisy!
This week from Monday through Friday, I will be adding to this post. Each day I will show how we model EVERY DAY! In fact, I will challenge those who say this is a man-made command to STOP MODELING...that is, to stop doing the actions that help them model. Furthermore, I will show how God COMMANDS you to model AND He speaks to you in terms of modeling phrases.
(I don't mean to be hard on these people. Like the Pharisees, I don't believe it is bad that these people are wrong. I'm the FIRST to forgive people and FORGET their errors when they confess and repent. Once they admit they were wrong. It's not a coincidence that the people who are MOST critical of others are the ones who find it most difficult to say, "I am wrong." Unfortunately, most people don't learn even when they are confronted with the error of their ways. However, once these people are shown they are pursuing man-made traditions INSTEAD of God's Word, they have a critical and intentional decision to make: man-made tradition OR the Word of God? THAT is when people condemn themselves. Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathaea were Pharisees who chose to reject tradition and embrace Jesus' doctrine...so it is possible for us! After all, we begin as Pharisees because we are brought up and surrounded by tradition.)
What is a model?
Model-An explanation for observed effects
(Notice: A Worldview is a model. People who speak of "worldviews" are talking about models!)
Modeling at its core involves understanding CAUSES that result in observed EFFECTS.
The MAIN benefit of Modeling is that it gives you the ability to intentionally achieve desired EFFECTS.
One of the reasons God gave us His Word is to help us understand the CAUSES that lead to the EFFECTS God desires.
God wants you to UNDERSTAND. God wants you to be a modeler!
On Tuesday, we will see the first sign that we are ALL modelers.
Before we go into this topic, I want to reiterate the difference between people and animals. Animals think. However, animals don't know that they think. Animals cannot be intentional with their thoughts. Animals can't daydream about their past. They can't imagine a future. Their brains NATURALLY work towards getting them their desires as quick as possible with NO THOUGHT to the Long Term.
People are ABLE to think LONG TERM. They are able to intentionally use their brain to think in ways that benefit them in the Long Term, however this requires doing the opposite of what they desire in the short term.
Animals and people who think short term do this by thinking comparatively, living with contradictions, focusing on EFFECTS, and pursuing comfort. This is fleshly thinking and occurs NATURALLY for animals and humans.
People who think Long Term do this by thinking contrastively, removing contradictions, focusing on CAUSES, and pursuing growth.
This is Long Term thinking. It is God's way of thinking. EVERYTHING about this way of thinking runs OPPOSITE to how humans think. The goal of "Modeling God" is to show you HOW to think like God according to the Bible.
The internet is allowing us to have MORE information. However, if we don't know HOW to think, we are going to agree with whatever reinforces our flawed beliefs.
How many pastors and teachers are teaching you HOW to think?
How many pastors and teachers are teaching you WHAT to think?
God, Jesus, and the Bible are different from EVERY OTHER religious book BECAUSE it teaches you HOW to think. Be careful with people who encourage you not to INTENTIONALLY think by telling you we can't know or aren't supposed to know. This is encouraging you to worship a God you can't describe...which is the definition of IDOLATRY.
God wants us to think.
God wants us to know and understand who He is...why have we let leaders demonize thinking?
1. ASKING WHY
The first way people act as modelers is when they ask "Why?". When people ask WHY?, they are trying to determine the CAUSE. This is good! The opposite of this is not asking because you want to believe it is a CAUSE that benefits you. EVERY TIME a person asks WHY?, they are PROVING they want to model. The Bible is written COMPLETELY from CAUSE to EFFECT. First of all, there are some very famous WHY's in the Bible:
"And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46)
"And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest, thou me?" (Acts 9:4)
John Piper preaches emotions as a CAUSE. He says: God tells us to have certain emotions, so we should just have them. ACTUALLY, the Bible realizes emotions are an EFFECT of a CAUSE:
"But Jezebel his wife came to him, and said unto him, Why is thy spirit so sad, that thou eatest no bread?" (I Kings 21:5)
"Wherefore the kings said unto me, Why is thy countenance sad, seeing thou art not sick? this is nothing else but sorrow of heart. Then I was very sore afraid." (Nehemiah 2:2)
"Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God." (Psalm 42:11)
The Bible does speak about things being "causeless", however this is actually translated as "without a JUST cause":
"I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out." (Job 29:16)
"And they shall comfort you, when ye see their ways and their doings; and ye shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done in it, saith the Lord God." (Ezekiel 14:23)
"And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause?" (I Samuel 17:29)
Believing that things are causeless is believing in randomness. THAT is another way to show people are modelers. Next time someone asks you WHY? just tell them "no reason, it was random". Asking WHY implies there must be a reason:
"As the bird by wandering, as the swallow by flying, so the curse causeless shall not come." (Proverbs 26:2)
"And the children struggled together within her; and she said, If it be so, why am I thus? And she went to enquire of the Lord." (Genesis 25:22)
"And Joab answered, The Lord make his people an hundred times so many more as they be: but my lord the king are they not all my lord's servants? why then doth my lord require this thing? why will he be a cause of trespass to Israel?" (I Chronicles 21:3)
The Bible (especially Proverbs) blatantly tells us there are CAUSES and the EFFECTS can be both good and bad:
"Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge." (Proverbs 19:27)
"The rich man is wise in his own conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out." (Proverbs 28:10)
The causes can be overwhelming in quantity and/or not immediately obvious qualitatively. This has led people to fight for why we can't know or aren't supposed to know the causes. Yet, these same people will demand from others an acceptable answer to WHY? While this is hypocritical, this isn't the most damaging misapplication of modeling. We will see the most damaging misapplication of modeling tomorrow (Wednesday).
We can know the causes. We OUGHT to know the causes:
"Then called Esther for Hatach, one of the king's chamberlains, whom he had appointed to attend unto her, and gave him a commandment to Mordecai, to know what it was, and why it was." (Esther 4:5)
"I have heard the check of my reproach, and the spirit of my understanding causeth me to answer." (Job 20:3)
Let's summarize this with an example from Jesus:
"And when his disciples were come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have taken no bread. Which when Jesus perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread? Do ye yet not understand neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees." (Matthew 16:5-12)
The disciples immediately REASONED among themselves in a short-term fashion. They were focused on fleshly concerns for their comfort. They were comparative. They were looking immediately at effects. They were living with a contradiction.
Jesus FIRST asks WHY?...He is focused on the CAUSE.
Jesus' question asks why they reasoned among themselves ABOUT the bread. Joyce Meyer changed the Bible to make the point that Jesus didn't want them to reason at all! (And no one seems to care that "Battlefield of the Mind" changes the Bible to encourage people NOT to think when the actual Biblical passage shows Jesus is focused on teaching HOW to think!) Jesus is ACTUALLY asking WHY they were comparative and REASONED about the wrong thing.
Jesus then points out the contradiction in their reasoning process. Why are they concerned about bread for 13 people when they personally saw Jesus feed thousands? Jesus even links this short-term thought process to a lack of faith.
Jesus is teaching the disciples HOW to think!
The disciples did think, but it was short-term.
Jesus takes them through the God-given principles to show them HOW to think Long Term like God.
Over the years, I have learned that MY first thoughts are fleshly. My immediate thoughts are concerned about comfort, proving my point, and living with contradictions...especially when I'm in a rush. The key is to take a moment and ask WHY? and then think the way Jesus taught the disciples.
Have you ever had someone tell you what they believed were your intentions and/or thoughts? When someone does this to you as a statement of fact, this is called "projection". People do it ALL the time.
People see an action (EFFECT) from you and they model the causes...they determine in their mind your thoughts and intentions they believe resulted in the observed actions. More often than not, the model is wrong. When the model is wrong, it leads these people to wrong conclusions and wrong predictions in other areas.
The reasons the causes are incorrectly identified are the "modeler" doesn't have enough of the right information AND they aren't objective.
They don't have enough of the right information because they didn't ask questions. Asking WHY? would improve their accuracy.
They aren't objective because THEY looked at the information in a biased way...from THEIR perspective! They PROJECTED their own bias ONTO another person...this is why it is called "projection". People who project onto us are ACTUALLY telling us more about THEM than what they are learning about us.
"And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considereth not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye." (Matthew 7:3-4)
People who point out problems in others are ACTUALLY telling us about them...they are experts at seeing the mote because they are familiar with their beam.
There are four types of sentences people can utter: statement, question, opinion, and conditional.
Statements are when a person claims something as fact. Example: "You are a hypocrite." If this statement is WRONG, then justice says the person who made the statement will be judged. Be careful when you make statements. Today's post deals with incorrect statements known as "projections". Projection brings judgment.
Questions are the safest. They are an attempt to gain information. We talked about asking WHY? yesterday. I have counseled people who want to say something mean (or make a projection) to somehow pushed it through a question. "Do you think saying you don't model and actually modeling is hypocritical?" This does A LOT less damage!
Opinions are personal...they are directed inward. "I feel like you are being hypocritical." This statement can't be wrong...THAT is how the person feels. EVERY response OUGHT to focus on the person expressing the opinion.
Conditional sentences are "IF/THEN". "If you say one thing and do the opposite, you are a hypocrite."
Notice that TRUTH can only be uttered with statements..."a fact that creates". The reason we want to make statements is that we want to speak truth...yet being incorrect brings judgment. Speaking incorrect, unprofitable ("idle) words is a cause for judgment.
"But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment." (Matthew 12:36)
In the TRUTH post, we saw how the Bible says in the enemy there is no truth at all. The enemy doesn't speak truth. Look more closely at how the enemy speaks. In the Bible there are no examples of the enemy speaking opinion. Everything else is:
Statement - "Ye shall not surely die:" (Genesis 3:4)
Question - "Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?" (Genesis 3:1)
Conditional - "If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread." (Matthew 4:3)
Even though a question and/or conditional statement can POINT to a truth, the sentence itself is not truth. Questions and conditional sentences are softer ways to talk to people WITHOUT judgment. You are not making a judgment with these types of sentences, so you are not opening yourself up to justice. Listen very carefully to what people say to you. If they say anything other than a statement and you take it as a statement...you have projected and judgment is on you.
I personally like to make statements and watch peoples' responses...they are telling me ABOUT THEM. For instance, the first sentence of "Modeling God" is: Imagine you are invited to a party where you will be able to participate in any sensual pleasure you desire for as long as you want." People have a problem with that sentence being in a book about God. Why?
"Sensual pleasures" are pleasures derived from the senses: hugging your grandkids, eating a great meal, watching TV, etc. What pleasures do we experience APART from our senses? The question was open. People who think this means something sexual (sensuous) are REALLY telling us ABOUT THEM!
There is another problem with projection other than just being judged for being wrong in the moment. Projection leads to an inability to predict the future correctly. This is the main conflict people inflict on themselves. This is also universal.
I don't intend to ruin TV shows and movies for you, but the majority of story plots revolve around this conflict.
PLOT MODEL: A guy projects incorrect causes on a woman. He then predicts what will happen next incorrectly...and hilarity ensues.
Again, this universal desire to project intentions on others is proof we all model and have the desire to model.
The third proof people model is prediction...people constantly attempt to predict the future. Whether it is a wager with friends, pontificating on television, or saying, "I told you so", people are constantly trying to figure out WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT.
This is modeling!
Notice: The ability to predict future events depends on correctly identifying the CAUSES. This means, in order to predict the future you HAVE to understand the past.
Most people are too impatient. They do not take the time to accurately figure out the past. They don't take time to examine themselves and their past situations.
One of the biggest benefits to reading "Modeling God" is finding out who you ARE. When people find out who they ARE, they instantly understand why past events happened. This is because they have determined an accurate model. Who they ARE is a CAUSE and the observed EFFECTS (actions) now make sense.
You CANNOT predict the future if you don't have an accurate model for the past.
Some people think God accurately predicts the future because the future has already happened and God is Outside of Time. These people don't understand what makes God Right is that He has all the information AND He is objective...God knows the CAUSES.
God can accurately predict the future because He knows the CAUSES that brought about the past.
4. INTENTIONAL LIVING
The MAIN benefit of modeling is to be able to intentionally achieve desired EFFECTS. If you know the CAUSES, then you are able to achieve the desired EFFECTS. If you know the model, you are responsible for the results. People tell us how to get intentional results, especially when we are having problems. ANYONE who says "modeling" is wrong needs to stop asking WHY?, projecting on others, predicting the future, and being intentional...otherwise they are a hypocrite.
If they tell others God doesn't want us to model, they are in VERY dangerous territory!
One of the reasons the Bible has been given to us is to tell us the CAUSES so that we can intentionally achieve the desired EFFECTS. People who tell us God didn't want us to model Him or ourselves are saying God DIDN'T want us to understand Him or ourselves more!
In the Next Post, we will see what the CAUSES are...