Tag Archives: Church attendance

Should church members question preachers about the doctrine that is not in the Holy Bible?

In our previous article, we looked at one of the great possibilities of diversity in Christendom and Christianity, many ‘theologians‘ interpreting the bible and introducing human doctrines into their religious groups or churches.

In every church, we can find preachers telling the flock to do this or that and to believe this or that. In all those churches their clergy claims that they are showing the only One God, though many preach about a Triune or three-headed god, in contradiction to the Biblical teaching that there is Only One True God Who is a Singular Spirit Being no man can see.

When we hear the question

Should church members question preachers about the doctrine that is not in the Holy Bible?

we would say that each individual in a church or in a community of believers always should investigate what is really said in their community and always should compare the teachings of their leaders with what they can find in the Book of books, the Holy Scriptures or the Bible. To the above mentioned question, we would add

Who or what do you want to believe most, the Word of the Bible or the sayings of the priest, pastor or preacher of your church?

It is not cultural Christianity that “often suffocated authentic faith and facilitated superficial religion“, but it were those who went with the schism of 313 and the Nicene Creed, preferring to go for a triune god instead of keeping to the God of the Bible. First it was the Roman Catholic Church who ‘suffocated’ the real followers of Christ and even went after them to burn them at the stake. Later the protestants, instead of going back to the Biblical teachings continued in the tradition of the Catholic Church instructing their members the human doctrines instead of Biblical doctrines. They created rules and regulations which are not at all in the Bible. Some of them teach about dispensationalism, by which the seven dispensations and very names of the dispensations are also manufactured. Several protestant churches bring forth a system that contradicts the Scripture.

The System says the age of the Law lasted until the Day of Pentecost. The Bible says the Law and the prophets were until John – not Calvary. Luke 16:16 The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. {The Scriptures Versus the System}

Many churches also created a hierarchy and gave a special position to their leaders which is not described nor encouraged to have, according to the Scriptures. Some even go so far to place themselves in the place of the Jews, calling themselves the Chosen People of God, then forgetting that the Jews for ever will be the People of God.

Lots of churches do not spend much attention to what is really written in the bible. They seem to forget that divine illumination shall come to those who read the Bible and are willing to listen to God’s Voice. Though this requires are right attitude and our faith in those Sacred Writings. If we believe the Bible is the Word of God, and that the Bible is the ultimate authority over our lives then our eyes shall be opened and we shall come to see and understand what others are telling is according to the bible or not.

We always should trust God more than human beings and should refer to their sayings with the material we can find in the Holy Scriptures.

Theologians may do a lot to have you to believe that you would not be able to understand what is written in the Bible. Those implying that those without a PhD aren’t qualified to speak or write publicly about religion, are misleading the people and are wanting people to believe that God is partial and only wants to give insight to those who are learned. Those people who have gone to a theological college are closing ranks.

“It looks like clericalism… This kind of elitism may be more subtle than language of schisms and wounds and splits, but it has its own unpleasant implications.” {Who is qualified to write theology?}

However, one should know that God does not exclude anyone. Anyone can come to God, and Jehovah God is ready to nurture and provide insight to anyone who is open to receive His Wisdom.

The traditional goal of Christian theology might have been to develop a better understanding of God so that we could think and speak rightly about God within the context of a life governed by our faith in Christ and our discipleship to him in community with other Christians, but already for centuries the study of theology has concentrated more on the many writings of human beings who were priests, bishops or theologians, but only a few hours a week are given to the Word of God.

Under Christendom, politicians mouthed pieties they didn’t believe, and persons attended church for business contacts and socialising. Whilst in those churches those present did not hear so many words from Scripture, but got to hear lots of words written and said by human beings.

Lots of those speaking in church count more on those writers from the past instead of going by the anointed ones from God. They rely on the knowledge of their predecessors without questioning their words or comparing them with what is really in the Bible.

A bible student, Shawna N. writes

Some are so set on their interpretation that to suggest any new insight or different perspective will get you shot down pretty quick usually with scriptures that remind you that only God is God and we are not.

That we are but mere serveants who should not make ourselves out to be more than that. That we should not add or take away from the scriptures, that we should repent etc.etc.etc. and I think it has caused many to retreat and to isolate.

Many believe they have the Bible figured out. That their interpretation of the scriptures is the right interpretation and any challenge of it is to add to it or take away from it or that perhaps you are thinking you are higher than God.

The attitude and saying of certain preachers made people think about their church. This way lots of people left their church for what it is. Many do not attend church anymore, not because they cannot find one that worships the God of the Bible but because they cannot find a church of the Bible.

Shawna N. writes

I believe that it is crucial in studying Gods word to meditate on the scriptures. To slow way down and to meditate on every word in every scripture and to pray for God to help us to understand it .To know that our ways are not His ways our thoughts are not His thoughts .

Many of us grew up being taught that Jesus is going tocome crashing through the sky one day and thatbChristians will just vanish one day though the bible says that we are to Live by Faith Not by Site we are to expect a physical rapture and as long as we do and as long as we expect Jesus to show up in the physical to save the day the day will not be saved Is He not already with us and in us are we not His hands and feet?

Michael Hickenbotham, member of the Church of Jesus Christ for over 65 years the above first mentioned question a good question. He writes

I believe we all, even the most devoted disciples, lean to our own understanding most of the time. The phrase is found in Proverbs 3:5:

5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. Proverbs 3

Notice that the verse starts with “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart”. If we always do that first, the second part of the verse will take care of itself. Trust or faith in the Lord needs to the primary guiding principle in all the important decisions in our lives.

In order for us not to lean to our own understanding, we need to be influenced by and follow the inspiration of Lord through the Holy Spirit all the time. For most of us, that seems to be more a goal than a commandment.

Not relying on the arm of flesh (Jer. 17:5; 2 Cor. 5:7; 2 Nephi 4:34; D&C 1:19) is another way of saying the same thing.

Benson’s Commentary indicates that we should

“Wholly and securely rely upon God’s wisdom, power, and goodness, and upon his providence and promises, for direction and help in all thine affairs and dangers. Lean not to thine own understanding

— Think

And that thinking is what a lot of people prefer not to do. They expect others to think for them and to take action for them. In many churches we can find lots of passive members, just sitting quiet, following the Sunday service, never reacting to what is said in church by that one who is standing in front or on the pulpit.

Michael Kern, B.A. Applied Linguistics & Biblical Languages, Moody Bible Institute replies affirmative to the question if we should question preachers about the doctrine that is not in the Holy Bible

Absolutely! The pastor’s first and foremost responsibility is to lead his congregation. If he is leading them down the wrong path, then he is failing at his job. Those in positions of great authority are held greatly accountable for their leadership.

I will say this, though: he may be teaching something that is biblical, even if you don’t see it. Some Scriptures are very difficult to interpret, and we have multitudes of different doctrines and denominations to prove it.

Before you challenge your pastor, take the time to research the subject yourself. You may find that he knew what he was talking about. If you find that the subject doesn’t align with Scripture in any way that you can see, then there is a likely chance that he is leading you astray.

If that’s the case, I would advise approaching your pastor one-on-one and asking him how he came to the doctrine in question. Maybe his explanation will make sense, maybe it won’t. Have a discussion with him and try to reach a consensus on the issue regarding what he has been teaching.

If he absolutely refuses to listen to biblical proof that he is wrong, and can provide no satisfactory answer for his teachings, then you move on to the last resort: bring your findings to the elders of the church, and ask them to speak with him. If all else fails, disciplinary action may need to be taken.

Sheryl Powell replies

If they are lovers of truth and they come across scripture that contradict what they have heard something is wrong. Now they may have it wrong and need to be adjusted with proper scriptures. If that is not the case and the ideology of the Pastor is wrong, perhaps it is time to seek love elsewhere.

The Catholic Sister Julie Distel her idea is that

church members of any denomination should free to question, in my opinion. I would suggest questioning in the proper environment – perhaps an appointment – not challenging the preacher during a service!

Now be mindful that some Christian groups, particularly the Catholic Church, has always honored tradition as a valid and rich source for our faith. Many condemn this and will quote Scripture about “no source but the Bible.” That is their belief and God bless them. We believe differently – and God bless us too.

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Preceding

If the Bible tells us not to lean upon our own understanding, are preachers, and Bible professors, leaning upon the theirs’?

When looking for God or wanting to relate to the Most High Divine God

Rhetoric and Biblical Truth

7 Ways To Become A Better Christian

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Additional reading

  1. Looking to the East and the West for Truth
  2. Concern needed for the one who has no questions
  3. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  4. Have you also been deceived
  5. Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims and Muslims do not understand Christians?
  6. Challenging claim 1 Whose word
  7. Divine revelation mediated by Moshe and other selected people
  8. Vital importance of reading and following the Kitvei Hakodesh
  9. Reading to grow and to become wise concerning the most important thing in life 1 Times of reading
  10. One of the most important Truths
  11. Bible Inspired Word of God
  12. Everything from the Bible is useful for humans
  13. Importance to read the Bible regularly and gain understanding
  14. Bible exceptional Book of books where nothing can be taken away or added
  15. Old and newer King James Versions and other translations #1 Pre King James Bible
  16. Deep sense of consciousness of the brokenness of our system
  17. Face to Face
  18. Preparing for the Kingdom
  19. Good or bad preacher
  20. Looking for a primary cause and a goal that can not offer philosophers existing beliefs
  21. An unbridgeable gap
  22. Trinitarians making their proof for existence of God look ridiculous #2
  23. Constantine a brutal sociopath getting the believers in a God man on his side and creating a Christian church
  24. Mental Enslavement and Sins Syndrome (MESS)
  25. Redemption #8 Righteousness by Faith
  26. Different wineskins
  27. Not many coming out with their community name
  28. A strange thing might happen when you come under Christ
  29. When seeing a biblically sound church
  30. As a small church needing encouragement
  31. Invest in Faith working together arm in arm

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Related

  1. On Religion
  2. Celebrating Christendom’s Demise?
  3. The Scriptures Versus the System
  4. Who is qualified to write theology?
  5. Theology as Discipleship
  6. The Shifting Paradigms of the Gospel
  7. Father, Holy Spirit, & Son: When the Trinity is Out of Order
  8. three times a day
  9. what’s in the Bible?
  10. The Struggle to Believe the Bible
  11. Fitting The Right Pieces
  12. Five Reformation Principles
  13. In the Midst of Every Plague, God is Still A Mighty Fortress
  14. They Dreamed a Dream
  15. It is Easier to Change the Local Church than the Bible
  16. The Polarizing Effect Of Truth
  17. What I Love About the Bible Despite My Misgivings About It.
  18. To Show God’s Truthfulness
  19. The Christian’s Struggle to Be Good

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Filed under Questions asked, Religious affairs

My perspective: Virtual v Physical church attendance

After several months having the churches being closed, people now allowed again to meet in small circles (with the Covid Safe Ticket or Pass) every individual should check for himself or herself and should examine for the family if it would already be safe to go to gatherings, be it for relaxation, Bible study or church service.

Going to “the grocery store, the restaurants, the beauty shop, the office, the classroom, the gym, and the doctor” is something totally different than going to a church, where people are sitting close together and normally also would sing and say prayers together in an enclosed space making it very easy for a virus to spread.

When people go to the supermarket, they are only limited by the amount of people allowed per square metre, and as such have to follow the red and green light indications or the stewards allowing only the right amount of people entering the wide space. To enter the shops only a regulated amount of people per square metre is allowed and often only two at a time, plus always with a mouth mask.

To go to a café, snackbar or restaurant a person has to have the Covid Safe Ticket or Pass and the same regulation is there for other places (as churches) and events.

For going to a gp or doctor one must make an appointment and maximum two people are allowed in the waiting room, which should be ventilated and normally is spacey enough to receive much more people than two.

For going to church there is in many cases no controlling system, though there should be someone at the door asking and checking your CST.

Worship and Bible class are not simply about our being fed spiritually and matters that can be done on our own or via online meetings. Such online meetings can never take in the place of an actual real-life meeting. But we must be fully aware of the present conditions and dangers for each other when coming together in real life.
For every follower of Christ and every lover of God the gathering between all members of the faith community should be very important and not negligible. But, and a great But, we should be fully aware of the situation.

We must consider one another to stimulate unto love and good deeds (Heb. 10:24), and that the best way to do that would be in connection with assembling together (Heb. 10:25), but this also can be done by going in conversation online by the present technical progress. There are Zoom, Jitsi a.o. to have interaction when meeting online.

That people would stay away from the assembly in present times does not mean that they would be less religious or would have abandoned their faith. It is essential to protect the own health as well as the health of others. This can mean that we still have to wait sometime before coming together in real-time and/or real life.

Our relationship with God and with His beloved son shall not be less or of less value. It is from the depth of our heart that the love for God should rise above all our present limitations.

 

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Preceding

Ideas about Religiosity

May we have doubts

Religious Resistance against vaccination

Covid-19 update | Covid Safe Ticket

New rules in Belgium to stop the spread of coronavirus

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Additional reading

  1. Christian in Christendom or in Christianity
  2. Daily thought for July the 8th and the Summer months
  3. Not created to be on our own
  4. No time yet to relax the CoViD-19 restriction measures
  5. Fourth wave of COVID-19 a pandemic of the unvaccinated
  6. According to Pew Most White Evangelicals Don’t Think COVID-19 is a Medical Crisis
  7. Did the first followers of Jesus have ‘church’
  8. Priorities for our Christadelphian community and for the spreading of Good News
  9. Worship

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Related

  1. Get Back to Church
  2. Is church attendance linked to higher rates of coronavirus?
  3. Enjoying Christian Fellowship
  4. Church attendance is often a distraction from biblical Christianity
  5. Normal Christian Doctrine Explained: Church Attendance
  6. Three good reasons to come back to church
  7. Millions skipped church during pandemic; will they return?
  8. No Family Is Too Busy for Church by Desiring God
  9. Why are people attending church less frequently?
  10. Why We’re Not Going Back to Church

OMT's Digest

This post is dedicated to all the virtual churchgoers like myself and those who are still unsure about whether it is best to worship virtually or physically in a church every Sunday. If this is the first time reading any of my blog posts and you want a straight answer, then please don’t proceed because this post is meant to get you thinking to find the answer within yourself.

Prior to COVID, I wouldn’t say I was a consistent church goer. If there was an attendance register, I am sure I would be called to ask why I get in late or why I have been absenting myself from church. COVID however resulted in a lot of churches going online because of physical safety restrictions so I guess I found it very convenient to wake up and have church right in the comfort of my living room.

Afterall, we learn…

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Headlines - News, Health affairs, Lifestyle, Re-Blogs and Great Blogs, Religious affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters

Are you having such days?

At last the sun is showing herself after a very long grey period.

As the Director of Missions at Centreville (Virginia) Presbyterian Church, Sharon Hoover probably encounters enough people who also feel that the days are pulling at their end. She too has to make her way on this planet, amidst the joys and struggles — and also sometimes at a glacial pace — toward maturity as a Christ-follower. Through God’s grace, she also has stumbled upon some wisdom in her five decades.

It’s my joy to share thoughts, raise questions, and explore doubts. {Life’s path meanders}

She managed to take beautiful photographs of the world which tries to give enough signs of the Hand of the Most High Divine Creator. There you can find a.o. God’s paintbrush dipped into all the colours when creating the Rainbow Hot Springs (Yellowstone National Park)
But you might also be confronted with the human beings making an impact on the planet. Some good, some not so good.

She is passionate about creating space where people can experience God. This drive motivates her to disciple new believers, speak, and encourage women in their faith journey.

In her region she has to face the same flight away from church like in our regions. She, like many pastors in West Europe, has struggled as people walk away from her home church.

Relocation for employment or family reasons have taken some members. Others have chosen to leave due to differences of opinion, theology, or purposes. Regardless of the reason, it hurts nonetheless. {Why Choose the Church?}

She is been on a church staff for more than 20 years and has heard many people’s stories.

Their faith journeys often include at least one unhealthy church encounter. In my discussions with leaders of other churches, I know this is not unique to my faith community. Church nomads travel into new places of worship every week. Discouraged from a previous church experience yet wanting to be part of the larger family of God, they consider the possibility of new church home. {Why Choose the Church?}

People may be restless. In some countries they may be lucky to find different denominations, having a choice of lots of churches. In the so called Catholic country Belgium every village had its own Roman Catholic church and in cities different Catholic denominations also could be found as well as different protestant churches. Today most Catholic churches are  most of the time empty. The protestant evangelical churches which attract youngsters with their shows and entertainment services still manage to get some few at the service, for which people are prepared to travel some kilometres.

In the United States, of which we so much think of the mega churches, according to Barna’s Trends 2017, church attendance is at an all-time low in that so called Christian State. A mere 35 percent of Americans surveyed reported attending church in the past week. Two-thirds of us chose activity other than being with a faith community. Barna researchers probed further asking why people no longer attend church. Millennials’ responses were especially telling. Their top three answers were:

  •   the church is not relevant to them
  •   they find God elsewhere
  •   they can teach themselves
Sharon Hoover at the Redbud Post writes

Somewhere along the way, we have developed the shortsighted view that church is about our personal experiences. What is in it for me? Choosing to follow Christ is indeed a personal decision, but never was the journey meant to be a solo or private one. After our initial encounter with the Living God, continued growth depends on commitment to a local body of Christ. The church. Internet resources, best-selling books, and a walk in the woods can nurture faith, but it is in community where we learn to love, be patient, show kindness, receive correction, and so much more. {A Love/Hate Relationship with the Church}

Roman Catholic Eucharist

Roman Catholic Eucharist (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today, lots of people have a quaint feeling about religion. Many have a love-hate relationship with God and with the church. Though lots of people still claim to be Christian, we can not see much of a Christian attitude.  You would think that as Christ-followers they would belong to the family of God. Today there is not much to see of them loving such an association with the Body of Christ. Though

God created us to be in community (Genesis 2:18; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; 1 Corinthians 12:27). This universal Church, the one that includes all who call on the name of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, draws us into a most unique global space of connectedness. {A Love/Hate Relationship with the Church}

In this globalising world we are constantly confronted with world news and lots of languages. Lots of people can go to many places.

Friends and ministry partners allowed me to travel and experience new cultures. I heard languages I had never heard before, ate exotic foods, and found fellow believers in all corners of our planet.

My husband and I faced several life changing circumstances. We became empty-nesters when our daughter headed out for college. I broke my first bone (ouch, my ankle) and he graciously took care of me. Most profoundly, my precious father-in-law Bob passed on to glory. Bob was loved by all who knew him. We mourn our loss but know that Bob is dancing with the Lord and organizing car trips from the rising of the sun to the setting of the same. {Dipping into Memories}

She still can live with many memories, but for many life goes so fast and they are carried away by social-media and their workload, that they forget to live really and before they know the time is gone, and memories have faded by the overload of junk information.

We notice that there are lots of people who struggle but do not have it in them to write it off or to have positive contacts with others pulling them out of the gutter. When Mrs. Hoover struggles with something, she tend to write a lot.

Journaling brings HealingMy initial entry typically makes little sense. It’s an attempt to catalog the crisis. Anger or frustration or animosity emerge in my inability to string words into a legible sentence.

After a while — in some cases it’s the end of that day’s entry, but in other cases, it is weeks or months or years later — my thoughts flow more gracefully. I’m able to find the words. Although the hurt may still be present, I found the ability to grasp my emotions through my journaling. {Journaling: Healing through Private Words}

We may be lucky when we can surrendered emotions onto journal pages, however, the pain flows through the pen and somehow becomes validated.

Pain and confusion take on the form of words. Once we put words to the difficult undercurrents, we begin to move forward in the path of healthy grieving. Faith emerges. A sense of calm replaces the distant and empty feelings. {Journaling: Healing through Private Words}

We get some of those days we can miss like toothache and other days we wonder what we are doing here, whilst other days we would love to happen something here on this earth with us in the centre.

Another day to get dressed, go to work, make dinner, and do the dishes. Also another day to chat with neighbors, meet a friend for coffee, and curl up in my warm bed at night.

But it’s also another day with no burning bush moments like Moses, no Damascus Road experiences like Paul, and certainly no angels like Mary’s Gabriel declaring I had found great favor with the Lord. Again. {Finding Ordinary Perseverance}

English: Steam phase eruption of Castle Geyser...

Steam phase eruption of Castle Geyser in Yellowstone National Park. The steam from the geyser casting a shadow ot itself creating crepuscular rays. Français : Eruption de vapeur du Castle Geyser à Yellowstone. La vapeur créé un jeu d’ombres et de lumière rappelant des Rayons crépusculaires. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some may have their mantra of the day suggesting they ought to have tweetable thoughts throughout the day, sprinkled with Facebook-worthy posts of witty text message screenshots, along with at least one Instagram photo of their food (even if it’s a failed Pinterest attempt) or their outfit-while-standing-with-hand-on-hip-and-leg-slightly-bent. {Finding Ordinary Perseverance}

How many do not let their thoughts been carried away to dark alleys instead of letting them wander on sunny beaches. Either they find it is again a day they do not want to have any more, or they think it was again a day like any other one, wasted … just another day.

We make ourselves crazy when we feel like we have to “be brave and do something courageous” everyday, or face the pressure of “make today the first day of the rest of my life” everyday, or “be the change you want to see in the world” every moment. It’s exhausting. {Finding Ordinary Perseverance}

It is impossible to make of every day a marvellous day let stand an incredible day. It is also not possible to tackle every day on our own. Some days we need others around us to carry us through the day. Not every day can be totally new and different on all parts.

Sometimes, Friends, the bravest thing we can do is to repeat yesterday. The ordinary. One day at a time.

When we look for momentous events daily in our friendships, parenting, job, marriage, and even faith, we set the stage for disappointment. Contentment remains unreachable when the search for adrenaline rush moments becomes our source of significance and fulfillment. {Finding Ordinary Perseverance}

Let’s just work together to take care of our 3rd rock from the sun.

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Filed under Being and Feeling, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

Daring to speak in multicultural environment

Living in a multicultural environment, in a democratic capitalist world, you may wonder how much freedom of speech and freedom of religion people are willing to give to each other.

U.S Postage Stamp, 1957

U.S Postage Stamp, 1957 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In our world which says it is a free democratic world you would expect religious freedom to be a fundamental right. It might well be recognised by international human rights documents, and one which is integral to our human dignity, but that does not mean yet that people are so open minded they accept other’s people way of thinking and certainly not their sort of faith. In our surroundings the countries may enable its citizens to live in accordance with deeply held values and beliefs about what it means to be human, but by the different population groups we encounter often those who only are prepared to have their way of thinking, their faith, to be the one to be the main value and to which everybody has to adapt to. For sure that can not be called an open mind.

The exclusion of other Christians can be felt mostly by evangelicals, especially pentecostal new-born Christians. They shall in many cases fiercely react against non-trinitarian Christians, even would deny their right to call themselves Christians. Strangely enough by those evangelicals who call for unity under Christians and say we should come to religious freedom, we find many who oppose Muslims or people belonging to an other religion than their Christendom. Are those who are calling for religious freedom accepting the theists (those who accept a or the godhead exist) and atheists who belief that he doesn’t

(glossing over wrinkles in which god we may be talking about…). {Does not believing result in belief?}

Often we do find they close the doors for such other believing people, instead of trying to go into conversation talking about the differences in belief. Often they complain that their faith is threatened by all the immigrants and by the many converts to Islam. They also often complain that the other groups seemingly have little understanding of, or respect for, the rights of their religious communities to maintain the religious identity of their organisations, but often it are they themselves who oppose the religious laws like halal and kosher food or religious killing of animals without sedatives. In Belgium we can clearly see this with the opposition against the slaughter of sheep for the Jews and Muslims.

In Australia some may call to withdraw all government funds from organisations that ‘discriminate’, but often they do not see in own bosom, often bringing wrong and discriminating messages over other believers.

As Babamboga from Nairobi,Kenya, writes:

Christians at time are so side blinded they believe that the only way is Jesus Christ and anything else is going to hell including Muslims and the Buddhists and if go further on some a bit open minded Christians will say that Allah is the same God but does that mean anyone worshipping Buddha or Seth are already sinners but really is that their problem. It is like judging people who grew up knowing Santa Claus exists, is it really their problem that they believe such old folk tales are real? And oftenly in most of those movies it is faith that ensures these fairy tale super heroes are still alive. {Oh, My brother testify.}

This person is right to remind people what is written in the Bible were God is letting the world know that

there will be prophets who will spread his word

and that it doesn’t necessarily have to be pastors who give wrong renditions of the Bible based on their useless understanding of the word. Too many people still give too much preference to those theologian writings instead of clinging to the Bible Words, of which we are told that they are the Words of God.

In Belgium, the last thirty years, church attendance became minimal whilst the attendance at mosques grew intensively. We do agree that in our juridical system only the recognised religions agreeing with the council shall have their priests, pastors, rabbi‘s or imams paid by the government, but that did not withdraw many who believe in only One God to go out and preach and to attract those Christians who got muddled up by the many human doctrines.

By those monotheist believers we do find the non-trinitarian Christians who are outnumbered by the many different non-recognised or non-official or not Islam council associated Muslims, who often get together in packed garage mosques.

At the same time we do find several fanatic fundamentalist Christians who bring in hell for everything they can. They come up with saying that the Bible actually condemns some behaviour and wonder how the church will outright give justice to drunkards and prostitutes.

… yet in the bible itself, mind you in the new testament, weren’t prostitutes part of His plans, weren’t thieves there too…. {Oh, My brother testify.}

Those who call themselves Christian should come to see the difference between Christendom and Christianity and should distance themselves from human doctrines, looking for Biblical truth there where it is to find, in the Bible itself.

Some Christians are so into their religion and they fail to see when pastors apply simple mind games of the interpretation and soon a whole congregation enjoys in the feasting of snakes and you wonder has it really got to the point that if I do a couple of acted miracles and tell people the Lord wants us to eat sinners you will all follow. {Oh, My brother testify.}

In our surroundings where, this way, we do find many who fled from the Catholic and other Christian denominations to find a stronghold by Muslims, it is important that followers of Christ take up the Bible and perhaps also the Quran to show others where it went wrong in Christendom and what is really written in the Holy Books and how our society should come to the Abrahamic faith.

When there is an open mind and freedom of religion, each faith-group, monotheist, unitarian or trinitarian, or having a whole bunch of gods to worship, should have the same rights to be there and to speak out.

That outspokenness we not often enough do find by Christians. Many of them just keep their beliefs for their own and do not dare to speak about it with others.

The agnostic is saying that they don’t think there is a way to transform a belief about god’s existence into knowledge. But they could still hold a belief on the matter. You could be an agnostic atheist, or, for that matter, an agnostic theist. {Does not believing result in belief?}

For many the issue of a god has become so complicated by theologians and philosophers

that we think it is some totally different concept that we can treat differently. Maybe people just don’t want to take a stand, they’re too unsure or don’t want to offend. {Does not believing result in belief?}

The one who really believes in the One True God, need not to be afraid to express his opinion. He has good reason to let others know what he believes.

Many would say

Of course there is no chance of “proving” God by strict logical syllogisms (but can we prove anything outside of mathematics this way?) Every logician knows that there’s nothing in the conclusion that is not already latent in the premises. But neither is this inability any proof that such a being as God does not or cannot exist. You may as well say that since I cannot prove to you whether life exists on other planets by sheer argument it therefore cannot exist. An unprovable proposition is not any more false (or true) simply because it cannot be proven. {Pascal’s Possibility}

We have the Book of books to give us an idea of the nature of the Most High Divine Being. For some it seems manifestly impossible to prove an image of God,

formed by a haphazard, subconscious blending of our moral intuitions and deepest wishes, it is not simply a figment of our imagination {Pascal’s Possibility}

The real believer knows exactly it is not just some imagination and wants others to know it. It is like you found something incredible or you ‘invented’ something extraordinary. You cannot be quiet about it.

Some might think the fact that the ideal is too good to be really possible.
But

It is a trick of the mind to think that the goodness of a thing counts as positive proof against its existence. You may as well be lying on the beach and say the sun feels too good to exist. {Pascal’s Possibility}

Encountering so many people today who laugh at the saying that there would be a god Who created everything and Who is so good that He has a Plan that will bring eternal life and peace for many, there is reason enough to tell them that the question about such a God existing has nothing to do with if logic proves it

… logic either does, or does not, make such a God’s existence possible. {Pascal’s Possibility}

But we should listen to our inner being and look around ourselves. We also should not be afraid not to claim absolute demonstrable knowledge, but “reasonable belief”. And that “reasonable belief” should be founded deep in our heart and fed by a thorough knowledge of the Bible.

From somewhere we received the Good News and came into the faith. Now it’s up to us to share it wherever we are. We now should come to the conclusion that it is marvellous that we came into the faith to become children of God. Knowing and accepting the Divine Creator as our heavenly Father to Whom we own everything, we also do know that it is a privilege and a responsibility that God gives to us to go and speak others about His wonderworks.

When we came into the faith we wanted to become part of the Body of Christ, the church, and one of the highest things that you can do in the church, is to be an active member willing to share the truth. For sharing that truth we do not have to give a theological or biblical lecture and we do not have to have a theological education (though it might help, but could also distract, because most theological colleges are formed from one or the other denomination and focussing more on the worldly writings than on the Bible itself.)

What the community of faith demands of their members is an openness to others and words that can make the community grow. Though it is also not bad to have words which will remind those in community of how the world really is now. Therefore we too are looking for writers who are willing to share how the world is evolving. What happens around us may not let us be untouched. We have to notice it and should react accordingly how that God would like us to behave in such surroundings.

When looking at this reality of the world we are living in we can show the difference of this world with the different world in God’s Plan. Writing about it or preaching we can become preachers exposing the lies that are driving people’s lives,

ripping them to shreds, sapping them of strength and energy. {10 Years of Preaching, 10 Lessons: Lesson 1}

A ‘Lead Pastor’ from Bloom in Denver believes preaching is

standing up in a tradition that reaches back to Moses and Isaiah and finds its consummation and climax in Jesus of Nazareth and saying, “The reign of God is here. Change your mind, and believe yourself into this shocking good news.” {10 Years of Preaching, 10 Lessons: Lesson 1}

It is following up the task Jesus has give to his disciples, to go out into the world to tell about that Good News. We have to come to understand that we are messengers called to this –

to employing all of the resources our speech to construct alternative modes of understanding for the people of God so that they can leave every dehumanizing Egypt and Babylon they find themselves in. Week after week, we summon them saying, It is time to go home! {10 Years of Preaching, 10 Lessons: Lesson 1}

It is not by praying often out loud, while driving down the road, for all to see, listening to a lot of Christian music with sometimes cheesy, weird beats and no cuss words, letting yourself be seen at the church-building and certainly not by going to church and

worship a man named Jesus who you may believe has saved the world by dying and coming back to life. {Why Being A Christian Isn’t Cool}

that you will find the way back home and would bring others to home-base. But when you keep to the words as they are written in the Bible and to a honest form of worship, without all the cirque and circumstance, concentrating on the truth instead of letting yourself and others be diverted by entertainment, you shall be able to go together with other devoted people on the right path. And, yes, that way you perhaps have lesser people in your congregation and would not be able to build a mega church, but better to have a good quality church than a quantity church.

We, who label ourselves as “Christians” need to re-focus.  We need to speak the truth, even when it hurts.  We need to replace the luke warm water in our mouths with hot sauce baby, confidently sharing God’s peace, grace and power.   {Why Being A Christian Isn’t Cool}

We should not have fear, like the apostles, when Jesus was caught, where very much afraid to let others know they were with Jesus. After he died and raised from the dead they even did hide in houses. We should not hide ourselves in our house, but go out, like the apostles did after they received the Holy Spirit.

We as Christians should be baptised with water but also with Holy Spirit and be encouraged to speak. Opening our heart to God we can let God’s Spirit enlighten us and guide us on our way. Trusting Him using His Word as our backbone we shall be able to enter many sorts of gates of this world, which is in the hands of ‘Satan,’ the adversary of God who more than once shall try to question you about the existence of that One God.

When questioned about God, what we belief and be tested, let us never compromise the truth ourselves for anything or anyone. We always do have to be carefully how we treat the Word of God. It is sacrilegious. That Holy Word we should sincerely seriously investigate and reflect on ourselves and those around us. When we want to tell others about that word we sincerely honestly should show the facts of it, showing that it presents good but also bad in all people, even in men of God. Bring the gospel-message we should dare to show good and bad of all and that we dare to let others see the brutal forces or battles which took place in the past. We may not present it as if everything is moonshine but also never may be guilty of turning the sweet gospel into something sour by our own surliness.

If we do, we might cause the hearer to turn away from God wincing instead of turning to him rejoicing. {Lessons Learned from 25 Years of Preaching (3)}

We also should remember that we

Don’t Have to Be Vicious with Truth to Be Strong for Truth {Lessons Learned from 25 Years of Preaching (3)}

We may not let any unwholesome talk come out of our mouths. Our ordinary speech should be  always with grace and as a sacrifice.

Col 4:6 RNKJV  Let your speech be always with favour, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

Col 3:8 RNKJV  But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth.

Eph 4:24 RNKJV  And that ye put on the new man, which after Elohim is created in righteousness and true holiness.

It is a vain effort to try to exorcise the evil only. Character is not a negation. Having put on the new self by our baptism we should be proud to show to others that renewed body which is created in God’s likeness and let it reveals itself in the true life that is upright and holy.

By saying

You have learned the Christ

the apostle Paul puts the members of the ecclesia their faith upon a high level; it is the faith of approved disciples in Christ’s school. For such men the “philosophy and vain deceit” of Colossae and the plausibilities of the new “scheme of error” will have no charm.

Also for us who want to go out in the world to bring the Word of God to as many as we can, we should be so pleased that we have found the treasures of wisdom and knowledge that are hidden in Christ, that we want to share that treasure with as many as we can, because we do want to have the love of Christ also in our heart and bring the fire unto those around us.

Therefore also in trying to reach others we do not want to use harmful words, but only helpful words, the kind that build up and provide what is needed, so that what we say will do good to those who hear us.

Eph 4:29-32 RNKJV  Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister favour unto the hearers.  (30)  And grieve not the holy Spirit of YHWH, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.  (31)  Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:  (32)  And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as YHWH for the Messiah’s sake hath forgiven you.

 

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Preceding articles:

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

Looking for a shepherd for the sheep and goats

When believing in God’s existence and His son, possessing a divine legislation

Not making yourselves abominable

Where are the female writers

Perishable non theologians daring to go out to preach

What Should I Preach ?

 

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Further reading:

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