In our post-modern age, truth is whatever you want it to be. But for the Christian, even in the twenty-first century, there’s just one very clear choice…
It’s always amazed me how many believers and how many churches are holding apparently “religious” services, with all the trappings for the faithful, and even talking about God and Jesus, while leaving out the original and ancient message claiming to be from God, in the collection of books we call the “Bible”.
In many churches today, if the Bible is referenced at all it’s used sparingly as a support for whatever feelgood message the minister has cooked up. Why is this? There are surely a variety of reasons: the minister and many in his congregation think it’s out-dated, irrelevant, disproved, politically-incorrect, archaic, or just plain unpopular; his denomination holds the Bible in contempt; he only has his little empire in mind, or he’s so arrogant as to think that his own ideas are better conceived.
Since I’ve been a Christian it’s always seemed to me that you either accept the Book for what it claims to be, or you stop wasting time and discard it altogether. Either it’s inspired by God, or it’s written by men and it’s an intentional deception: every word is suspect. So what’s the Church and the Christian religion all about if the Bible is just a collection of the ideas of men-many of those being rejected? Isn’t it an empty sham, an invention designed to make us feel better about life and death, a set of “suggestions” and platitudes, a human construct designed to give the minister a vocation and his flock a sense of belonging? Isn’t that what every other religion in the world is doing?
If the Bible is what it very clearly claims to be from cover to cover and we’ve failed to accept the fact, we’re doing ourselves and those around us a very serious disservice, we’re being hypocritical, and we’re disobeying God. For those who’ve been kept in the dark about what it declares, here are a few examples:
“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32 NIV);
“I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life” (John 5:24);
“The word of the Lord came to me…” (Jeremiah 1:4);
“This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word” (Isaiah 66:2);
“All Scripture is God-breathed…” (2 Timothy 3:16).
And it’s no good loosely adhering to the New Testament while claiming the Old Testament is irrelevant and only for the past. Jesus Christ frequently quoted from the Old Testament and referred to it, and he said:
“If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?” (John 5:45-46).
When speaking to his disciples after he’d risen from the dead, he said to them:
“How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the Prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory? And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself” (Luke 24:25-27).
You can reject the Maker’s instructions if you wish, and continue in the “club” so as to feel good about yourself, but count me out of that empty, powerless charade: I’m throwing myself entirely into the conviction that God has spoken, that he’s perfectly capable of preserving his message through the ages to its fulfillment, and that the creator of the heavens and the earth means what he says.
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