Friday, November 04, 2005

# 106: I Understand

Compromise is a game of give and take. The world could not function without it. Almost everywhere we look, it takes wheeling and dealing in order to complete transactions. We see it in our own Congress, in order to get bills passed. Hardly a bill can get passed without some kind of concession/s by one side or the other. We see it as unions negotiate with all kinds of employers. A marriage would not work without it. That is the way the world works. Compromise is essential for the good of just about everyone.

But there is one area where compromise equals deception. Just about everyone hates to be told that they are being deceived, that is, in the spiritual realm of God. No one can compromise with the devil (evil) and end up a winner. Even a little compromise of what is right and holy, and the whole person will be corrupted. Here is the point: It takes just a little bit of poison to kill the whole person.

The New Testament is unequivocal as to what is right and wrong conduct in the lives of all who profess to be followers of Jesus Christ. But much of what is right and holy living has been compromised by being omitted or diluted for this simple reason: Those commands don’t blend well (belong) with many of our modern ways, are not adhered to, or are labeled as being old-fashioned, unnecessary, too difficult, or next to impossible to implement.

When a person wants something done correctly, he/she goes to a professional. If you need your motor vehicle repaired, you go to an authorized dealer. If you need an operation, you go to a reputable doctor. If you desire to have a custom house built, you get a contractor who has a good track record. Although there are many things a do-it-yourself person can do by him/herself, it is always best to go to one who is skilled in a specific profession. We must remember that most professionals spent big bucks going to college for many years. When they are done with school, they expect a return on their money. They may come to love what they are doing and love the people they will be working for, and their clientele may be happy and grateful for their services. But the reason for all this joyful exuberance is the bottom line (the money)—the more, the merrier.

Therefore, I truly understand why people go to established churches. They expect the people behind the pulpit to be professionals who will tell them the whole Gospel message. They went to seminary school to learn what Christianity/Jesus Christ is all about. Therefore, when religious learning is completed, the graduate has a choice between being an assistant in some church and starting one’s own church. How will these future religious leaders measure success? They will most likely measure it by preaching compelling sermons, week after week; by how much money is collected; by the number of new parishioners; and of course, by keeping the pews filled. No doubt, there may be other reasons, but the above three reasons will dictate if one is going to remain in the Christian ministry, go out and dig ditches, or wash clothes for a living.

It will be a TRICKY job to preach a good sermon, convince the laity of the right way, and still somehow avoid telling the laity what they don’t want to hear. Tell them what they don’t desire to be told, and many will say bye-bye. To be more explicit, there are many New Testament verses (the ones I bring to the surface in this blog) that do not set well with this modern culture we live in. If and when preachers do preach on these hard-nosed verses, they must be made softer (watered-down) and not as absolutes. “That is only a small compromise; that shouldn’t hurt anyone. It does make the Christian life more palatable with our present lifestyle.” But that form of “Christian life” is not genuine, Bible-based Christianity. In fact, all those hard-to-swallow verses could fit on several pages of the Bible. The question is this: Out of 700 pages in large print or as little as 160 pages in fine print of the New Testament, how can eliminating two or three pages do so much harm? As I said before, it only takes a little bit of poison to kill. Therefore, when the clergy does away with those few pages, hopefully not in a clever and sly way, the result is spiritual poison with the ability to kill multitudes. If anyone desires to know what some of these hard-nosed verses are—our active part of Christianity—these are the posts that bring them out into the open: #31, #92, #58, #59, #60, #76, #77, and #78.

Now the question remains: Are these church leaders aware of the harm they are doing? I sure hope not. I pray they are doing it inadvertently. Nevertheless, one way or another, it is the clergy that is responsible for the ill/uninformed church per se. I am sure the vast majority of the clergy are good, honest, loving and caring people. And I’ll bet you that most churchgoers love their pastors dearly and think the world of them. That, however, even compounds the danger. Here is why: When someone is loved dearly, people often see the very best (by painting them pretty) in that person. To put it another way: Many would say, “Oh, our church leader would never intentionally do that; he/she is so loving, just like part of the family.”

The reason I am so bold and controversial is because I don’t desire, covet, or need anyone’s money, love, esteem, or anything else of value, be it material or spiritual. I do it because I hopefully love those people (that are being misled) in the same way that Jesus Christ loves them. How do I know I love them? Because it hurts me deeply when I put myself in their place (empathy) as they give their money and devotion to something/someone that may lead them to an undesirable place. That is strong language, but it is the truth. Then, some might ask, “What type of love does Jesus have for those that are being misled?” Answer: "He desires that all men/women be saved and come to an accurate knowledge of the truth." 1st Timothy 2:4, paraphrased. That is the type of love that desires the very best for all people. But that love of Christ will do no one any eternal good if they don’t believe and live as directed in the New Testament.

I very well know that what I write will never come into vogue. Most likely, Religion's Crime against God is (or could become) the most disliked and hated blog on the web. I understand. Still, I am inspired to just keep on writing the truth and trust that God will take care of the rest. I can just hear some of you thinking, “That is your opinion of the truth.” To those who are thinking that way, I challenge you to prove me in error according to the New Testament. Everyone, including myself, needs a good challenge once in a while.

To go even further, I dare anyone to bring up any topic in this blog to your know-it-all Christian friends or even—if you have the audacity—to your church pastor. See what type of response you get, and then throw it at me. I am that confident that what I write is Biblical truth. WARNING: If you do not want to know what the Bible expects of Christians, please do not read the rest of this blog.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dear Al, I was told recently that Jesus was the archangel Michael and that you should not worship Jesus. Now from what I have read I can not see this. My understanding on this; Michael is a great prince who serves Israel. He has tremendous authority but,is only an archangel. But, his position is not one of higher rank than that of Satan.When contending with the devil over Moses body; Michael says Christ the lord rebuke you. Christ can command the Satan Matt.4:10 Christ created the Satan. God used Christ to create all things John 1:1-3 Including Michael. A creation can not be greater than its creater.

Worship Jesus; If One looks hard enough the bible reveals that there are currently TWO beings in the godhead? the Father and Jesus. Hebrew
word (Elohim) meaning family. So how do they get three? And why is this so hard to get?

I am new to this and I really what to understand it. Any help would be great.

Thank you

al thinker said...

Thank you for your excellent question. I will attempt to answer your question as best as I can. The New Testament does mention that there is a Holy Spirt. Some religions put that Spirit as part of the trinity (The father, Son and Holy Spirit). Although one will not find it in the New Testament as I mentioned above; the closest the Bible comes is in 1st John 5:6-8. Let me quote you several more verses in the book of John 16:7-8 and just down a little further in John 16:13, “Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. When he comes he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment. . . .” “But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.” Here is another verse: Acts 2:4, All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and were began to speak in tongues [languages] as the Spirit enabled them.”


To further complicate things, let me give you one more verse: Romans 8:9, “And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ,” I assume the Spirit of Christ is the same Holy Spirit. I am a simple person and like things simple. I have a passion to understand the Bible in as simple fashion as possible. I hope I answered your question. Just a little more. Although there is one God, He comes in the person of Jesus Christ, the Father and the Holy Spirit. Since the Holy Spirit is God that dwells in Christians, we are, in a sense, the recipients of God in the form of the Holy Spirit. This can be a confusing topic, I hope I made it a little clearer. I published a three part series several weeks ago entitled, ‘Your own Personal God.’ They are # 82-83-84. This may be of interest to you. By the way, if you have any more questions, please feel free to send them my way, regardless how stupid or simple they may sound.

Thanks again.
Althinker

Anonymous said...

Al,



Thank You for your help.

Anonymous said...

A good friend of mine recently invited me to a Catholic Church. Having never attented a Catholic Church my curiosity was sparked so I obliged and went. The first person who spoke to everyone at the Church was the "Treasurer". He gave us a 20-25 minute speach as to why we should get our check books out and pay $1,500 now to hold us over for one year. This man was using some extremely skilled subliminal sales pitches. There had to of been atleast 1000 people in that service, I felt bad for all of them. Then The Priest began to speak and just barely went over a few highly spoken easy to handle points that the Bible offers. It was so shallow. Then in the end they were cleansed by the blood and body of Christ. Other than humoring themselves, I wondered what these people were getting from this experience. I couldn't believe what the peoples crudentials for attending a church were. They seemed so "sheep like". Al, I agree with what you are saying. Unfortunately, the majority of the people who attend church want to "feel good" and justify their daily lives. Peoples standards are so low as to what they learn about at there church that the leaders of the church give them no more than whats neccesary to keep the majority coming back. Keep on writing.. BC ; )

Anonymous said...

A good friend of mine recently invited me to a Catholic Church. Having never attented a Catholic Church my curiosity was sparked so I obliged and went. The first person who spoke to everyone at the Church was the "Treasurer". He gave us a 20-25 minute speach as to why we should get our check books out and pay $1,500 now to hold us over for one year. This man was using some extremely skilled subliminal sales pitches. There had to of been atleast 1000 people in that service, I felt bad for all of them. Then The Priest began to speak and just barely went over a few highly spoken easy to handle points that the Bible offers. It was so shallow. Then in the end they were cleansed by the blood and body of Christ. Other than humoring themselves, I wondered what these people were getting from this experience. I couldn't believe what the peoples crudentials for attending a church were. They seemed so "sheep like". Al, I agree with what you are saying. Unfortunately, the majority of the people who attend church want to "feel good" and justify their daily lives. Peoples standards are so low as to what they learn about at there church that the leaders of the church give them no more than whats neccesary to keep the majority coming back. Keep on writing.. BC ; )