Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Children of Designer Gods (part 3)

Another fallacy of today's so-called Christians is their acceptance of others' beliefs as equal to their own.  Usually it's expressed something like "as long as they're sincere in their belief," or something similar.  Sorry folks; you cannot be a true Christian and think that a good Buddhist , good Muslim or good anything else will be going to Heaven--their fate is a one-way trip to Hell.  If you believe that, you're not trusting in the Christ of the Bible. The fault for holding this kind of belief lies squarely in the teachings of many churches.  They're not holding fast to God's Word!
After preaching in a local church one Sunday morning, I shared coffee with an interesting fellow who had only recently started attending there. He'd grown up in a main-line denomination in which some churches teach the Bible properly and others teach whatever they want, or so it seems. My new friend was commenting on the large number of Buddhists that had been moving into the area and mentioned that they were "good people" and made some other comments that put his theology squarely in my sights.  I commented that, thought they were good people: helpful, hard working, industrious..., their beliefs were taking them straight to Hell.  My new friend stopped and looked at me strangely.  "I've never heard that before," was his reply.  He'd never heard that, though he'd been brought up in and around a church.  The church had failed him.
Jesus clearly said that He is the way, the truth and the life; no man comes to the Father but by Him.  That's pretty plain, pretty exclusive.  It completely contradicts any statement about "as long as they're sincere...."  Some other religions even give credence to Jesus as a great prophet, though saying he's not divine.  He clearly said "I and the Father are one," so if He is a great prophet He should be believed; therefor, His statements are to be believed; they therefore condemn themselves by what they say.
The second half of this is that the churches have failed to teach the reality of Hell--the penalty for sin.  There was a time when preachers preached "Hell-fire and damnation messages," and that time is gone--replace largely by the God is Love message. God is certainly Love; but love without truth is valueless--not really love at all.  Maybe we need at least a bit of that fire and brimstone preaching again.
When churches ceased to preach the Bible theology began to drift; people's knowledge and understanding of God went by way of the wind and they started making it up as they went along--thus the designer gods however you want it.  The fix for that is to return to the Bible.  Read it, study it, memorize it; get into a church where it is taught reliably and regularly; surround yourself with folks who attempt to live it and apply it to their lives.  Then you will better understand God as He is, not as each might design Him to be.

Johns 14:6
John 10:30

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