Of late I have had concerns regarding what it is we do insofar as religion or better still, Christianity, goes. There are so many of “us” who post religious, rather, Christian themes. Why the distinction between religion and Christianity? Well, the true definition of religion is, “man’s search for God”, and Christian means: “man’s acceptance of God”. Therein lies the difference.
Matthew Henry offers this quotation: “Contentions and quarrels about religion are sad evidences of remaining carnality. True religion makes men peaceable and not contentious. Factious spirits act upon human principles, not upon principles of true religion; they are guided by their own pride and passions, and not by the rules of Christianity: Do you not walk as men?”
I think it goes back to the beginning of God’s church. There were twelve patriarchs which composed one church, the “ancient” Israel. Then there were the twelve Disciples which composed one church, the “spiritual” Israel. And now, look at us! I want to put emphasis on the word, “now”. NOW, look at us! I wonder what ever happened to the perfect number twelve. Why? Because between now and when Christ returns, we better get to being that “twelve” again because there are only twelve gates into the New Jerusalem. While there may be 144,000, symbolically, who will go through the Time of Trouble, and that means the perfect twelve times twelve, and the “000” means “an amount”, putting it together, a “perfect amount” will be left to stand against the best satan will throw at them, it is NOW when we must prepare to be a part of that number. Many of us who are alive today, reading these words, will be allowed to fall asleep to await the return of Christ, but many of us will be alive, just as it occurred during the time of Noah.
Now, I’m not promoting nor agreeing to what is happening today called ecumenism. The word is defined:
“Ecumenism refers to efforts by Christians of different church traditions to develop closer relationships and better understandings. The term is also often used to refer to efforts towards the visible and organic unity of different Christian churches in some form. The adjective ecumenical can also be applied to any interdenominational initiative that encourages greater cooperation among Christians and their churches, whether or not the specific aim of that effort is full, visible unity.”
This can never be in principle albeit it is the goal of Roman Catholicism to promote now, force later, compliance to their dogmas, teachings and adhering as “the” Christian church for all Christians. We have seen evidence of this prior and later in the year we will see it done in completion.
What I’m speaking about is the varying posts I see. What is the point of these posts in offering Christian information? What is the end goal? Is it to promote their brand of religion, because this is what it does. It does not promote Christianity. Christianity is not something your force upon others. It is not something which is even debatable. It is either accepted or not. All else is “religion”. Is it your need to promote what you believe, how you believe and how others should believe? In essence it is your need to say, “I’m right and others are wrong, especially if you are not believing as I believe it to be.” Let’s forget about the titles given, whether Church of Christ, Catholic, Seventh Day Adventist, etc. None of these “names” will get you into the Kingdom. None of them have the special code needed at one of the twelve gates to gain you entry yet so many of us wear it as a form of an identification badge, like I used to wear when on the premises of the IBM Corporation. It identified who I was “inside” the corporation, and it did not matter where I was in the world, but once I took off that badge, “outside” the corporation, I was no different than anyone else outside, and pretty much, if I forgot to remove my badge after leaving, there would be some reaction from those outsiders such as disdain for not liking that company for whatever reason, or jealousy for having wanted to be in the company and could not. While that badge would get me into any IBM facility in the world, it would not have any effect entering a church, bar, restaurant or shopping mall.
So, what DOES get me into being one of the twelve divisions which make up the true church of God, which will get me inside one of the twelve gates of the City? What does the Bible say—literally, of what I need, what you need, to get there? The Bible states specifically:
“Blessed are they that do His Commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” Rev 22:14 (KJV)
The very last book of the Bible. The book of prophecy which distinguishes it from any other book in the New Testament brings up a requirement in the Old Testament. No, “the” requirement of the Old Testament which obviously doesn’t change if it remains the “key” for anyone wanting to be one of the twelve to enter one of the twelve gates, having to stand upon one of the twelve foundations, which stand upon ten words of God, called, “Commandments”. In fact, it says we are “blessed” if we “say”, no. If we “think”, no. If we “pretend”, no. If we “do away”, no. It says, “they that DO”, follow, HIS COMMANDMENTS, meaning more than one, but another perfect number, ten, Ten Commandments, THEN and ONLY THEN we are given the right to the “Tree of Life” and are permitted to enter inside one of the gates of that glorious city.
So, what is the message which is not “religion” but “Christian” principle of absolute truth? That simple verse provided. And if we are not able to agree on that particular verse, then the true separation between us will be those who enter and those who are not able to enter. This is the true distinction. It is not about what you believe, think or desire or want to be. It is what it is without caring about your church, faith or indoctrination. It cares little about your traditions, customs or practices. It supersedes anything carnal and remains high and lifted up. If those Ten Commandments were followed, by all, and done in the spirit of love, directing us how to serve and worship God, and how to serve and share among each other, then THAT is the ONLY agreement any of us can truly have. That’s absolute truth. And it stands with or without you.
Of course, there will be those who cannot, will not agree, but then again I am not so naïve to think everybody will be in the City. They won’t have the proper credentials.
January 25, 2017