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New Church Perspective
is an online magazine with essays and other content published weekly. Our features are from a variety of writers dealing with a variety of topics, all celebrating the understanding and application of New Church ideas. For a list of past features by category or title, visit our archive.

Entries in Lord's love (2)


Feeling the Lord's Love in Repentance 

This week Abby takes a fresh look at the concept of repentance in her life—a concept that once made her feel heavy and stuck now genuinely lightens her load. She finds that this welcomed, new perspective on repentance aligns more convincingly with her understanding of God's true nature—one of love and forgiveness. -Editor

By nature I am a person who tends towards negative, victimized ways of looking at my life. It has taken me years to nurture a more empowered and positive outlook. I feel like for the first time in my life I “get it” in a way that I never have before. Up until recently I think that any time I read the Writings or the Bible or really most any religious or spiritual work, I had the victim lens in front of my eyes. I understood the ideas, but they felt hard, depressing, and not particularly helpful in developing the happy, secure life I longed for. They didn’t feel like the evidence of an all loving and supportive God I hoped to have a meaningful relationship with. Everything felt sort of on the edges of application and realization in my life. But in the last 6 months things have changed for me, and I recently had a very uplifting and hopeful experience reading a passage I’ve probably heard many times before.

Being raised in a minister’s family, I have known the major ideas and teachings of the New Church for as long as I can remember. I don’t remember thinking about or hearing the word repentance for the first time, so obviously it’s been an idea that I’ve had in mind for years. I was recently reading the Seven Practices of Peace spiritual growth program produced by General Church Outreach and came across this sequence of quotes over a few pages (40-41). As I was reading them the idea of repentance struck me in a new way.

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Remembering the Lord's Life

Coleman offers a critique for organized followers of the New Church to consider. Perhaps we under-emphasize a key part of the gospel. We may be much better equipped to "take up the cross and follow" if we reflect more often on the Lord's work as He took up that cross and led. -Editor.

Go into any Baptist church this Sunday and I can virtually guarantee that you’ll hear about what the Lord did for you 2,000 years ago. In the New Church, we tend to focus much more on what the Lord does for us now. But I think we might be missing out. Because for whatever faults there might be in that Baptist church’s theology, there is one fundamental truth there that has immense power: the Lord Jesus Christ loved the world enough - loved you and me enough - that He willingly laid down His life to make our salvation possible.

And how much more powerful is that truth within the context of the truths revealed in the Heavenly Doctrine: that that Jesus is the only God, that there is no angry Father behind Him, but that He and the Father are totally and completely one, that He wants nothing more than to forgive us – and that the problem that separates us from Him is not His unwillingness to look on us, but that we have turned our backs on Him.

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