Thoughts on Luke 8:11-39, the true meaning of Christmas, and why the wind and the waves came.

As the Christmas holiday approaches, the Christian zealots begin the cry of “Jesus is the reason for the season.” And so it is. I agree with this in theory but the practice in our beloved USA is far from it, even among Christians. Tell me if this is true in your family as it is even in my own, I confess:

  1. Christmas is about spending time with family.
  2. Christmas is about giving (and about receiving to a lesser degree) depending on your age.
  3. Christmas is about Santa Clause and his elves.
  4. Oh yeah, there will be a Christmas Eve service at your local church. There will be several services to accommodate your busy schedule.

I got to thinking about this and what came to mind was the question Jesus asked, “Who is my family?” More specifically;

21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.”

I included the bible verses below for two reasons. Primarily, I included them so you can understand the difference between the written word of God and my opinionated (but not educated) blogging. 🙂 My thoughts are italicized among the bible verses. If you get confused, just ignore the italics and meditate on the scriptures. The second reason I included this whole section of Luke 8 is for context. Otherwise, you might conclude that Jesus is telling you to reject your family if they do not believe in Him. Nothing could be further from the truth so stop it.

The Parable of the Sower Explained

11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12 Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.13 But the ones on the rock are those who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, who believe for a while and in time of temptation fall away. 14 Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. 15 But the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience.

How is your hearing, spiritually speaking? Do you hear but allow the enemy to lie to you just before you receive Christ and believe? Do you hear the word on a rock and quit the first time you are truly persecuted or tempted? Did you hear and then let your seed fall among thorns and get choked out by worrying or riches or the cares of this life? Or did your hearing and your seed get planted among good ground? I don’t know about you but I have received Christ on all four accounts. I have quit because the devil lied to me. I have fallen into sin and quit. I have been led away by the cares of this world. But most importantly, I have received the everlasting seed that was planted on good ground. And no man shall pluck me out of the Father’s hand.

The Parable of the Revealed Light

16 “No one, when he has lit a lamp, covers it with a vessel or puts it under a bed, but sets it on a lampstand, that those who enter may see the light. 17 For nothing is secret that will not be revealed, nor anything hidden that will not be known and come to light. 18 Therefore take heed how you hear. For whoever has, to him more will be given; and whoever does not have, even what he seems to have will be taken from him.”

Are you hiding the light Christ has revealed in your life? Many many preachers and zealous Christians will use these verses to say “Your sin will find you out.” Different context, preacher. Different scripture, zealous Christian. Read these three verses with the light in mind. In other words, you can not hide the light of Christ, so stop trying. You can’t hide the light of Christ, so take heed how you hear. Make sure it is on the good ground, not on a rock or among thorns or left to die on the wayside.

Jesus’ Mother and Brothers Come to Him

19 Then His mother and brothers came to Him, and could not approach Him because of the crowd. 20 And it was told Him by some, who said, “Your mother and Your brothers are standing outside, desiring to see You.”

21 But He answered and said to them, “My mother and My brothers are these who hear the word of God and do it.”

Here is the verse I quoted in the beginning. It’s Christmas. You are busy shopping and preparing and worrying about the holiday. You barely have time to work with all the holiday madness. Then your mother calls. Your brother or your sister reaches out. Are we going to see you this year? Hmm… How is your hearing? It’s December 18th and there is still much to do. Have you heard from Jesus lately? If you have heard from Him, did you do what he said?  

Wind and Wave Obey Jesus

22 Now it happened, on a certain day, that He got into a boat with His disciples. And He said to them, “Let us cross over to the other side of the lake.” And they launched out. 23 But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy. 24 And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Master, Master, we are perishing!”

Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm. 25 But He said to them, “Where is your faith?”

And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!”

I have read these four verses a dozen times. I have heard them taught and preached a dozen more times at least. Yet I have never connected these four verses with the 14 verses that followed. Jesus commanded the wind and the raging waters to cease. One could connect this to the storms of this life. One could preach a sermon on trusting Jesus in the midst of our battles. 

Today, and just now, I was asked the question why. What was the purpose of this wind and this raging set of waves? Could it be that the devil did not want Jesus and his disciples to reach the demon possessed man of the Gadarenes? What if Jesus was just a good sailor like Peter and changed his heading? Let’s go back to shore and try tomorrow so we don’t get hurt. Would any of the disciples have blamed Him? Many times I ask God to remove the storm. Many times God does remove the storm as He did in this case. But Jesus did not change direction. And he will not change His word. How is your hearing?

A Demon-Possessed Man Healed

26 Then they sailed to the country of the Gadarenes,[c] which is opposite Galilee. 27 And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes,[d] nor did he live in a house but in the tombs. 28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, fell down before Him, and with a loud voice said, “What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me!” 29 For He had commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For it had often seized him, and he was kept under guard, bound with chains and shackles; and he broke the bonds and was driven by the demon into the wilderness.

30 Jesus asked him, saying, “What is your name?”

And he said, “Legion,” because many demons had entered him. 31 And they begged Him that He would not command them to go out into the abyss.

32 Now a herd of many swine was feeding there on the mountain. So they begged Him that He would permit them to enter them. And He permitted them. 33 Then the demons went out of the man and entered the swine, and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the lake and drowned.

34 When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled and told it in the city and in the country. 35 Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid. 36 They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed. 37 Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes[e] asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.

38 Now the man from whom the demons had departed begged Him that he might be with Him. But Jesus sent him away, saying, 39 “Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done for you.” And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.

This is one of the few instances where Jesus told the one who was healed to tell everyone what I did for you. And just as God cleansed the demon possessed man, God has cleansed us and he wants us to tell everyone. 

Merry Christmas!!


Grace Changes Everything (Part 1)

Image result for Grace of God

For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly before the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16)

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodlines and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. (Titus 2:11-14)

Here we have before us two glorious scriptures defining what grace is and what grace does. Grace is defined by my good friend Google as…

  • (in Christian belief) the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.
  • a period officially allowed for payment of a sum due or for compliance with a law or condition, especially an extended period granted as a special favor.

So grace is unearned and is not especially something we can work for. Yet, some would seem to contradict the first scripture in Hebrews by the second in Titus. Grace teaches us that we should deny ungodliness and worldly lusts. Therefore, if we don’t always deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, then we have not received or earned grace. Some teach that if a person leaves Christ they were never saved in the first place.  I am not pretending to be a theologian on Calvinism vs. Armenian-ism. Nor do I want to start a debate on whether salvation is something you can lose. I merely want to define the Grace of God in this setting.

Is grace earned or is it a gift? Or is it both given and earned? The legalists will tell you it is given but can be forfeited at any time. Some will tell you it is given at salvation and can never be forfeited. I fall somewhere in between but definitely acknowledge it is an unearned gift. I don’t believe the Grace of God is like the grace period on an auto loan. I don’t believe it can be forfeited. I also don’t believe the Christian should take it for granted.

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. (Philippians 2:12, NKJV)

If we are consumed with working out our own salvation, we simply won’t have time to work out our neighbor’s salvation. More to come soon. Please pray for me, my dearly beloved, that my heart will continue to be filled with the desire to expose the truth and mend the broken-hearted.



Why now? Why do it at all?

“Somebody, after all, had to make a start. What we wrote and said is also believed by many others. They just don’t dare express themselves as we did.” (Sophie Scholl, a German Antinazi activist, executed by the guillotine for treason against the Nazi regime.


Why am I writing about a small, unimportant, so called Christian cult? At its strongest, New Testament Christian Church (NTCC) may have 20000 members worldwide. Who cares? There are congregations larger than that. The Mormons have millions of members. The Jehovas Witnesses have millions as well. Why Jason? Who will read? Who will care?

  1. The bottom line is, I am writing because I believe God told me to.
  2. I want to hear from others who have escaped hurtful churches or cults of any type! I want to minister to you and to be ministered by YOU!
  3. Many cults have a lot in common. I want to help anyone who needs to escape a cult.
    1. NTCC “encourages” its members to knock on doors for hours per week. So do the Mormons and JW’s.
    2. NTCC has a long list of legalistic rules that claim biblical sources but are thinly veiled control tactics. All cults do this.
  4. I want to publicize my escape plan!
  5. Someone, some day, may learn how to promote this cult and it could grow like a wildfire. If this happens, I stand ready to minister and warn anyone to run like a mad man!!
  6. I love to blog! I spent the last three plus years blogging about techie stuff on my job. It’s time to use my writing ability to glorify God.


“But the scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.” (Galatians 3:22, NKJV)

Welcome to Free Indeed!

Welcome to Free Indeed: Where escapees from legalism are always welcomed with open arms!

Ten years ago, I escaped a very legalistic and destructive church. Some would call it a cult and they would not be incorrect. About five years ago, God put it in my heart to write about my experiences. You have arrived at the culmination of this vision.

I started this blog in the hopes of writing a book. This blog is my notepad and I will include ideas, brainstorming and even updates on my progress.

The book will chronicle my history in this church, beginning with accepting Christ and walking from a new Christian to a cult member to my ultimate escape. The purpose of writing my book is as such:

  1. This is self therapy. I am not expecting perfection, that is God’s job. I desire healing. Grace is both an instant work and a progressive work. Part of that work of healing is writing about it.
  2. I want to help others who have been trapped or are currently trapped in a cult or a legalistic “un-Christian” doctrine.
  3. I want to start a conversation about unhealthy teachings that grow into un-Christian doctrines of devils. I have met so many people and families that won’t go to church because they have been hurt inside the sanctuary of a so called Christian building.

My hope is that this book and blog will grow into a ministry. Thank you for reading and I look forward to your feedback and your prayers.

God bless you!