Determining who a Christian believer is and what he or she stands for has become a complicated exercise over the last half century or so it seems.
When I entered my teenage years, the world’s population was divided into two people groups the “saved” and the “lost”. You were one or the other. That was my simplistic opinion at least.
If you were fortunate to be among the “saved” you were likely a fundamentalist or an evangelical. A handful of others professed to be “Christian” but affiliated themselves with “liberal” protestant denominations thus causing me to question their salvation. I had all the answers and had established myself as the supreme judge.
Then there were the Catholics. Even though they accepted the deity of Christ, His virgin birth, sinless life, death, burial and resurrection, their veneration of Mary, belief in purgatory and insistence that entrance to heaven was gained though infant baptism made them suspect. How could you be a Christian and a Catholic at the same time?
With the passing of time the term “fundamentalist” became a label to be scorned, resisted and even despised by some. The fundamentalist’s tendency towards legalism caused many to abandon the term and refer to themselves simply as “evangelicals”. Nowadays some are even re-thinking that terminology and defining themselves in other ways.
At times it seems like the things that separate and distinguish us from each other are greater than those that bring unity. Reading some of the current “Christian” literature, books and magazines makes you feel as though you’re from another planet. What are these writers talking about anyway? My own biases will become apparent here. The proliferation of terms like “moving in the prophetic” and “the new apostolic reformation” scare me. Am I “less than” because I’m not an apostle or a prophet? But I digress…
So what label do those who claim to accept Jesus Christ as God’s only means of salvation accept? Here is where the waters get muddied. We could be classified by any mixture or combination of the following terms. Pick one, two or even three or four, add them together (in any order) and define yourself.
Arminian, Amillenialist, Baptist, Bible-believer, Calvinist, Charismatic, Contemplative, Cessationist, Dispensationalist, Evangelical, Emergent, Full Gospel, Holiness, Independent, Liturgical, Name it and claim it, Non-cessationist, Post-modern, Post-post-modern, Premillenialist, Postmillenialist, Pentecostal, Preterist, Reformed, Spirit-filled, Word of Faith, ad nauseum.
So who am I? How would another Christian define me when they don’t really know what I believe, what I think, what I aspire to? How could they know when much of the time I’m not even sure myself?
I’m a child of God, redeemed by His grace alone, a recipient of His mercy, forgiven, transformed and being conformed into His likeness, guaranteed a place in heaven according to His promises.
I could add more but…we’d be back where I started from…confused.
April 13th, 2008
It doesn't matter what other Christians say, or what you think they're thinking.... most of them today are going the way of "Laodicean" anyhow. Just Follow Jesus(Yeshua), he's leading you where he wishes at this point in time. Yup, even unemployed, besides, He's got you allllll to HIMSELf, your undivided attention is what He's after. Life dosen't always turn out as we HOPED. We can make some pretty bad decisions, all by ourselves. (uggg). We get too busy in families, overload for others, always running around doing good works, then YOU get drained Finacially and spiritually. I'm gonna hit on a touchy subject--- S P O R T S, we can love it " to death", & that's where it can take us when we don't observe the LORD's DAY Personally , I beleive now,( didn't always, )that His day is SATURDAY, Others say Sunday, either way, this day is for HIM , a commandment that was not changed when Jesus Grace was preached.( many Chirstins today, tell you that we are living in the day of GRACE not LAW. Not buy into it. Respect for the Lord is never outdated. In these last days, your so-called Friends wil let you down, This is just part of an END time response mention by Jesus, don't be surprised or disappointed about it, it was meant to happen, all pre-scripted. Notice the first commandment? Thou shalt have no other gods before me? Gen.20:3 . SPORTS? hummm, and other things too, but Sports is really taking hold of us. W're all just fitting inot this little acceptance package that today's chuches aren't preaching about. The church age is UP. it's run it's course, and now?... What we need right now, is " A RAPTURE" hahah, - food for thought. Possible TIP: Look for two seasons, RoshHashana, and Penticost.(as noone knows the day or the hour.) right? Here's my presciption for you... follow a daily diet of prophecyinthenews.com, check out (youtube-Mark Biltz Q&A with Ray Bentley),both parts. As a long time Christian, who's been down some rocky roads I keep "LOOKING UP", it's very uplifting in a world crumbling. "You' re an Overcomer", your forgiven, now forgive yourself. Life is an opportunity, not a crutch. as Earth is our testing ground., to get the word out, via tracts or whatever. P.S.-- Be glad your out-o-that sports arena, your a winner for Christ., not the world. Blessings Dave, see ya up there. , praying for ya... old friend. . .ReplyDelete
Amen Brother...preach and teach away. Your insights are from God alone. This is something to reflect on. You go guy!!!ReplyDelete