Doctrine, differences, or ?

We are inundated with differing beliefs and factions in the Church. They are called “denominations” and the list is like this, there are 217 denominations listed in the 2006 Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches. In actual truth, those are broken up into over 30,000 all over the world and those are just the Christian religions, that is not counting all of the religions. Why are Christians so fractured and broken? Because we are human, that’s why.

We can’t agree on how to pray or what to wear or whether we should have communion every week or every month or just a couple of times each year. Our humanity has leaked into the gospel that we teach and preach to those who come to hear the Word of God until much of our sermons are our words, our interpretations of God’s Word and not His Word. There have been so many saints of God that have gone before us until, those of us that are left feel empty at times. Why? Because we are not sure of our own salvation, our own position in Christ, our place in His Kingdom, even though we believe we are His…there is still a smidgen of doubt. Likely put there by Satan, but it is still there.

It is like trying to be in a room that you don’t want any light from outside to be in during the summer, and unless you happen to live in a bomb shelter made of concrete and all of the cracks between the door and the structure are sealed, it is nearly impossible to be in total darkness! Light will find a way in. That is the way that we should preach and teach people about Jesus. No matter what they try to put up around themselves to keep your sermon from making a point or a dent in their life and their heart, at least one word or one phrase should prick them to their core. So that the Spirit can get in and convict them of their need for God.

We have allowed, over the centuries, our thinking processes to change some of the meaning of the Word. Oh, it is very subtle, a small nuance here and there, nothing very big so it won’t be noticed. But, the meaning and the effect of God’s Word is dusted with our wisdom and our thinking. That is not the way that the Church which started on the day of Pentecost is supposed to be, even after two thousand years, it still should be the Word and Wisdom of God, not man! That is why I cherish the copy of the Complete Jewish Bible that I have. They have been the keepers of God’s Word for more than four thousand years and they will NOT allow a jot nor a tittle to be out-of-place when it is being copied or translated.

There are a few words in Hebrew which don’t translate well and those you have to look up to make sure of the meaning, but they are few compared to the whole of the text. The point of this is this: if we were so particular about our Scriptures then why can’t we consult with God about the divisions in the Body of Christ so that there won’t be so many? The answer to that is just one word referring to someone who has been at this since the beginning: Satan. He and his cohorts whisper into the ears and minds of “Christians”, who have been in the church since they were wearing diapers, and they in their turn will say something to others in the church and before you know it there is an argument and a split forms and another church denomination is born.

My reason for the quotation marks around Christians in the previous writing is because they are those who have gone through all of the motions of being a Christian. They have done everything right in their eyes, but they have neglected to truly wash themselves in God’s Word. They bring a Bible to church that you could kill a mule with, but most of its pages have dust from 1995 still clinging to its pages.

 

There needs to be a true revival in the Church, the Body of Christ and I mean one that goes down to the bone! Not one that is a stirring of the waters on the surface, or everyone doing the “happy dance” and shouting “Praise God!” Those are nice, but the change needs to be and go further than that! The change should go all the way to your soul!!

How do we do it? I don’t know. We can’t do it on our own, but God can. Our pitiful revivals are mostly on the surface, like stirring the water in the pool of baptism with your hand. It lasts for a few seconds, maybe for a week, but it’s gone soon after. Nothing really changed, nothing happened down at the heart and soul of the church, the body of believers. Everyone, from the pastor on down to those who haven’t accepted Jesus yet, needs to give their life to Jesus or at least re-dedicate their life to Him. Not just saying the words or going through the motions, but really asking Jesus to cleanse your heart and your life!

Then, take your faith in Him with you from that building, to where you work, to the restaurants that you go to, anytime that you meet someone, one of your first questions should be, “Do you know Jesus as your Savior?” Yes, this is being radical as a Christian, but if we don’t you can be sure that those who do not believe in Christ will be!

 

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