Grace Martial Arts Fellowship began in 1990, went online with a website in 1995 and began publishing newsletters to the Christian martial arts community in 1998.
Because of the quality of information found in those early newsletter articles and the fact they are no longer available online, we’ve decided to re-publish many of them in the coming weeks and months. Our hope is that a new generation of Christian martial artists will be blessed by the wisdom of those who were on the path before them.
GMAF NEWSLETTER MAY 2001
Welcome to the GMAF Newsletter! We pray it will encourage you in your Martial Arts and Outreach for Christ.
Thoughts from the Master
“Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.”
“But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.”
The Apostle Paul
“Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy Spirit is good; lead me
into the land of uprightness.” Psalms 143:10
“Spirit-Do” by Sensei Mark McGee
“But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.” (Romans 6:6) KJV
“But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.” (Romans 6:6) NIV
The Apostle Paul gives us tremendous insight into the Christian Grace Life in his letter to the Romans. He knew the concepts he promoted were not easy for Jews to understand since they didn’t know God was going to work with Gentiles the way He did. Paul used many illustrations from the Old Testament (i.e. Adam, Abraham, Moses, the Law) to give the Jews insight into the new way of God working in the world.
Paul made a powerful statement in Romans 6:14 when he wrote: “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” KJV “For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” NIV
It is powerful because of what it meant to Paul’s audience. Jews built their lives, their belief system, their economy, their future, their hopes, their dreams on the foundation of the Mosaic Law. Paul said believing Jews and Gentiles were not under (hupo) the power and authority of the Law, but under the power and authority of Grace.
That’s a huge change for anyone, but especially for a devout Jew. They were raised to believe they were under the authority of the Law. That was their belief and practice in every aspect of life. It was their moral and legal safety net. Paul said clearly to them that their life had changed completely. They were no longer under the Law. They were under Grace.
What’s Grace? How is that different from the Law? Grace (charis) is a favor done without expectation of return: an unmerited favor. How does that change a person’s life? It is a different path, a new way of living.
Paul spoke pointedly to Jews: “Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that knoweth the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?” He used the example of marriage to help Jews grasp what happened to them when they placed their faith in Jesus Christ. “So then if, while her husband liveth, if she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man. Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.” Romans 7:3-4
Christians are “dead” to the old way (Law) and “alive” to the new way (Grace). What is the Grace Way? It is the Way of the Spirit.
“But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.” Romans 7:6
Think about that for a moment: serving in the new way of the Spirit. What
does it mean to you to serve in the “new way of the Spirit”?
Martial artists are familiar with the “way” of something. The Chinese word for way is “tao.” The Japanese and Korean word is “do.” We have Karate-do, Tang Soo Do, Tae Kwon Do, Aikido, Judo, Jukado, Jukido, Kendo, Iaido. Each is a “way” of living, thinking, speaking, working and defending.
So it is with “Spirit-Do”: the Way of the Spirit. Paul compared the “new way of the Spirit” with the “old way of the written code.” That was key to the Jews understanding and enjoying their life in Christ. It is key to us today, whether we are Jews or Gentiles. God calls on us to follow His Holy Spirit and walk the Spirit Path. He does not want us to walk the Law Path. That is not for us. “We have been released from the law.
If you are practicing with your partner and he grabs you and you move your body in a way that releases you from his grasp, you are free from his hold. Your partner no longer has power over you. He can no longer control you. He can’t move you because he does not have you. The same is true with the Law and Spirit. When a person is spiritually lost, the Law, sin and death have a powerful grasp on them. When the person receives Christ as their Savior, the Spirit moves them out of the hold of Law, sin and death. The Spirit makes them free from the power and authority of what once held them in a death grip. They are on a new path, the Way of the Spirit.
The Spirit Way is the way of freedom and truth. “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2
Christians walk on the Path of the Spirit Way. We do not walk on the path of the flesh way. The Law of the Spirit of life in Christ has made us free from the law of sin and death. Nothing can harm us.
“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from
the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Hallelujah!
Make this a great time in your life. Enjoy Spirit-Do. Discover all that God has for his children “who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” It is an amazing life!
“The Game of Life” Dimensions of Salvation
by Master Robert Xavier
Our salvation experience has three important dimensions.
1. Past salvation – saved from the penalties of sins.
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
2. Present salvation – saved from the power of sin in our daily lives.
“But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.” Hebrews 7:24-25
3. Future salvation – saved from the actual presence of sin in heaven.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1:3-5
The gift of salvation is God’s way of reconciling man to Himself through Jesus Christ:
“For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21
God desires to be in unbroken fellowship with us, and for us to be free forever from the effects of sin. He desires us so much that He was willing to transfer all of the sins of mankind onto His perfect and only begotten Son, who never sinned. This has broken the cycle of sin and death for all who turn to Him through faith in Christ. This has made salvation possible for us.
God’s gift of salvation for us is so complete, it covers our past, present and future. Now that’s a done deal!
(Next month: How we get to “first base” in the Game of Life)
by Pastor Vasile Filat
Today, we studied John 20 to refresh in our minds the Events of that Great Day of Resurrection of our Lord Jesus. What a big contrast in this chapter. Maria forgot what Jesus said and when she had seen that the stone had been removed from the entrance, she thought that “they have taken the Lord our of the tomb….” She told this to Simon Peter and the other disciple who came and entered the tomb and after seeing that there was not the body of their Lord they believed Maria’s version… They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead. There was no HOPE. It has been said that man can live three months without food, three days without water, and three minutes without air, but no more than three seconds without hope!… Maria stood outside the tomb crying…But!!! She turned around and saw Jesus standing there….. He spoke and gave her a so big HOPE!!! She went to the disciples with the news:”I have seen the Lord!” She brought HOPE to them.
The same day Jesus came and stood before them saying:”Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me , I am sending you.” He sent them with that great HOPE and this HOPE is now in us. It is a so a privilege to be a servant of the HOPE WHICH IS IN JESUS. And this hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us. May God bless you abundantly in the HOPE you have in Him and in bringing this HOPE to the ends of the earth.
Taking God’s Grace to the World!
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