The Metron Live Experience March 17th, 2024

The Metron Live Experience March 17th, 2024

Bishop Jim Swilley brings part 2 of his march series The Spirit Gives Life: Deactivating the letter that kills to create a new heaven and new earth.

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Bishop Jim’s insightful messages help others find THEIR METRON through M~otivation E~nlightenment T~ranscendence R~enewal O~utreach and N~etworking

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Notes by AI transcribed and summarized from the recorded audio.

This message explores the interplay between personal spirituality, identity, and the interpretation of religious texts. It emphasizes the importance of originality and the spirit over literalism and societal expectations. The speaker shares personal anecdotes, critiques fundamentalism, and highlights the significance of personal experiences and stories in understanding and communicating spiritual truths. Additionally, the lecture touches on cultural perspectives on homosexuality, the divine nature of human stories, and the importance of empathy for others’ experiences.

🔖 Knowledge Points

1. The lecture discusses the importance of interpreting scripture with context and humanity, and warns against the misuse of the Bible to justify oppression and harm.

  • Podcast Introduction
    The speaker is starting a podcast episode and mentions the ease of accessing podcasts on phones.
  • Series Part Three
    The podcast is part of a series, and this episode is the third part, focusing on a theme from 2 Corinthians 3:6.
  • The Spirit Gives Life
    The main topic is about the spirit giving life and deactivating the letter that kills, in the context of creating a new heaven and new earth.
  • Biblical Interpretation
    The speaker discusses the importance of context and the original Greek language in understanding the Bible.
  • Constitution and Bible Comparison
    The speaker compares the malleability of the U.S. Constitution with the Bible, emphasizing the ongoing process of democracy.
  • Humanity in Scripture
    The speaker reflects on the importance of recognizing humanity when quoting scripture, rather than using it as a handbook.
  • Misuse of Scripture
    The speaker criticizes the use of scripture to justify harmful actions and attitudes, particularly towards women and minorities.
  • Bible as a Work in Progress
    The speaker suggests that the Bible, like the Constitution, is not absolute and is subject to interpretation and amendment.
  • Jesus’ Relationship with Scripture
    The speaker talks about Jesus challenging the Pharisees and the established interpretations of scripture.
  • The Bible’s Formation
    The speaker mentions the Council of Nicaea’s role in forming the canon of the Bible.
  • Personal Experience with Scripture
    The speaker shares a personal anecdote about their grandmother’s use of scripture and southern colloquialisms.
  • Spirit and Breath
    The speaker emphasizes the connection between spirit and breath in the context of meditation and scripture.
  • The Dangers of Literalism
    The speaker warns against the dangers of literal interpretation of scripture, which can lead to harm and exclusion.
  • The Power of Words
    The speaker discusses the impact of words, particularly harsh words like ‘shut up,’ on a person’s humanity.
  • The Role of Fear in Upholding Scripture
    The speaker suggests that fear plays a role in people’s reluctance to challenge traditional interpretations of scripture.
  • The Bible and Social Issues
    The speaker touches on how the Bible has been used historically to support slavery and the subjugation of women.
  • The Bible as a Tool for Oppression
    The speaker criticizes the use of the Bible as a tool for oppression and control, particularly in the context of marriage and gender roles.
  • The Need for Wisdom in Interpretation
    The speaker calls for wisdom and a deeper understanding when interpreting scripture, as exemplified by the character Sophia in ‘The Color Purple.’
  • The Bible vs. Human Experience
    The speaker argues that the Bible should not be used to deny or override human experience and the innate desire for happiness and fulfillment.
  • The Bible’s Influence on Personal Beliefs
    The speaker reflects on how the Bible has influenced their own beliefs and the beliefs of others, sometimes in negative ways.

2. The importance of balancing the letter of the law with its spirit to avoid legalism and maintain a life-giving foundation.

  • Ethical Dilemma of Embryos
    The speaker references an interview with a congressman about the status of frozen embryos, highlighting an ethical dilemma.
  • Avoiding the Question
    The congressman responded to the ethical dilemma by deferring the conversation, illustrating avoidance of complex issues.
  • Problem of the Letter
    The speaker discusses the issue with adhering strictly to rules or the ‘letter’ of the law, which can lead to more complications.
  • Creation of More Rules
    The speaker notes that establishing one rule often leads to the creation of many additional rules.
  • Balance Between Letter and Spirit
    The speaker emphasizes the importance of balancing adherence to the letter of the law with the spirit or intent behind it.
  • Legalism
    The speaker warns against legalism, which focuses on the text of the law rather than the life-giving spirit of the law.
  • Spirit Gives Life
    The speaker suggests that the spirit or attitude of the law is what gives life and should be the foundation.
  • Words of Life
    The speaker values encouraging words from others, likening them to a ‘Vitamin B12 shot’ that provides a boost.

3. The importance of context and unconditional love in interpreting religious texts and understanding ancient beliefs.

  • Words of life
    Words of life can be expressions of unconditional love and support, not just scripture quotations.
  • New covenant
    The speaker references 2 Corinthians 3 to highlight the transition from the written law to the spirit, emphasizing the spirit gives life.
  • Bible reading perspective
    The speaker encourages understanding the Bible in context, considering the era and culture from which it originated.
  • Understanding ancient perspectives
    The speaker discusses how ancient people might have interpreted natural phenomena, like volcanoes and rainbows, in a mythological or religious context.
  • Modern interpretation of natural phenomena
    The speaker points out that what was once attributed to divine or supernatural causes can now be explained through science, like the formation of rainbows.

4. The main theme of the lecture is the interplay between personal spirituality, identity, and the interpretation of religious texts, emphasizing the importance of originality and the spirit over literalism and societal expectations.

  • Personal Experience with Rainbows
    The speaker recounts a moment when a double rainbow appeared while reading a gratitude list, which felt like a sign from God despite scientific explanations.
  • Interpretation of the Noah Story
    The speaker interprets the Noah story as a message that one person can make a difference, rather than focusing on the literal aspects of the story.
  • Critique of Fundamentalism and Science
    The speaker criticizes both fundamentalists and scientists for missing the spiritual essence of phenomena.
  • The Spirit Gives Life
    The speaker emphasizes that the spirit, rather than literal interpretations or scientific explanations, is what gives life to religious stories and personal experiences.
  • Importance of Originality
    The speaker values original thought and teaching, claiming to present ideas that they have not heard from others.
  • The Role of the Holy Spirit
    The speaker discusses their personal relationship with the Holy Spirit and its unpredictable nature in their life.
  • Identity Beyond Definitions
    The speaker encourages living beyond societal roles and definitions to find one’s true self.
  • Gender Fluidity and Societal Roles
    The speaker touches on the topic of gender fluidity, challenging traditional gender roles and societal expectations.
  • Personal Anecdotes on Race and Identity
    The speaker shares personal stories related to race and identity, highlighting the complexity and individuality of these concepts.
  • Criticism of Literal Interpretation of Scriptures
    The speaker criticizes those who take scriptures at face value without considering the deeper meaning or context.
  • The Power of Personal Testimony
    The speaker notes the impact of their personal truth on others’ acceptance and understanding of their identity.
  • The Concept of Being a Letter
    The speaker uses the metaphor of being a ‘letter’ to others, representing the personal influence one can have on another’s beliefs.
  • The Importance of Finding One’s Own Voice
    The speaker stresses the importance of finding and expressing one’s unique voice rather than imitating others.

5. The significance of personal experiences and stories in understanding and communicating spiritual truths, and the importance of respecting diverse perspectives.

  • Cultural perspectives on homosexuality
    Wellington comes from a culture where homosexuality may be a capital offense, influencing his views.
  • Personal revelation through dreams
    Wellington had a dream that led him to decide to become a pastor, highlighting the significance of dreams in guiding life decisions.
  • Biblical precedent for dreams
    Dreams and visions are honored in the Bible, with significant events often based on them, such as Joseph’s dreams.
  • Personal experiences as a source of truth
    The speaker felt a profound change after a visitation in a dream, emphasizing personal experiences as a way God communicates.
  • The importance of personal stories
    Personal stories can have more impact than scripture alone, as they are relatable and provide real-life examples.
  • Empathy for others’ experiences
    Respecting others’ stories and experiences is crucial, even if they differ from one’s own, as everyone’s reality is unique.
  • The limitations of strict adherence to scripture
    Adhering strictly to scripture without considering individual contexts can be restrictive and dismissive of personal experiences.
  • The divine nature of human stories
    The speaker asserts that human stories are divine and that they are a form of the Word of God, not just fleshly experiences.

6. The main theme is the importance of personal spiritual experience and narrative over strict adherence to religious texts.

  • Spiritual rebirth
    The speaker emphasizes the importance of being born of the Spirit rather than the flesh.
  • Personal narrative
    The lecturer encourages individuals to believe in and embrace their own stories and spiritual journeys.
  • Biblical interpretation
    The speaker suggests that the Bible’s intent is to inspire personal growth and individual storytelling.
  • Living Bible
    The concept that each person’s actions and experiences contribute to an ongoing, living Bible is highlighted.
  • Individual experience
    The speaker asserts the uniqueness of each person’s experience and the impossibility of fully understanding another’s perspective.
  • Critique of rigid bibliology
    The lecturer criticizes strict adherence to the Bible that neglects personal experience and growth.
  • Authenticity in teaching
    The speaker values originality and personal revelation in teaching over repeating others’ interpretations.
  • Self-worth
    The speaker addresses the issue of people feeling unworthy due to others’ interpretations of their lives.
  • Resisting external narratives
    The importance of not allowing others to rewrite one’s personal story is stressed.
  • Call and response tradition
    The speaker references the call and response tradition in gospel churches as a way of affirming personal testimony.
  • Value of perspective
    The lecturer notes the importance of sharing and receiving different perspectives to enrich understanding.
  • Life over the letter
    The speaker argues that living experience is more important than strict textual adherence.
  • Contribution to Metron
    The speaker provides information on how to contribute to Metron, including text donations and website support.
  • Charitable giving
    Donations to Metron also support a charity or organization of the month.
  • Upcoming guest
    The speaker mentions that Zach Pio is planning to visit and attend the next session.
  • Special event for Easter
    The lecturer hints at a special plan for the upcoming Easter service.

7. Clarification of misunderstandings regarding Old Testament Hebrew terms

  • Speaker’s denial of a statement
    The speaker begins by denying having made a particular statement.
  • Lack of examination
    The speaker clarifies that they have not looked at or seen the subject in question.
  • Old Testament Hebrew
    The speaker mentions ‘Mulak’ and ‘Nafshat’ as terms from Old Testament Hebrew.
  • Definition of Nafshat
    The speaker confirms that ‘Nafshat’ is the word for itself, implying a self-referential definition.
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