America, land of the free and home of the brave! You can say and believe anything! And it is even better if you can get others to believe the same. America! The home of the right to freedom of speech and religion. But can all that freedom be the undoing of America???
<based upon Challenge or Chapter #6 the case for the real Jesus – 73%>
We are presently, worldwide and not just in America, where we create our own Mix-n-Match Jesus! Think about that for a moment…just consider the facts:
- How many sects of Christianity exist in the world today? Latest numbers indicate in excess of 40,000 separate and distinct denominations of Christianity throughout the world. And what, you may ask, does it take to have a “separate and distinctly different denomination”? Just one tenet, just one word change within a tenet or doctrine…Yes, that is all it takes! Comparatively speaking it doesn’t make it much different but due to that one change it makes it more “unique,” if you will.
- Some denominations believe in drinking in moderation, as depicted in the bible. Other denominations are quite the opposite where drinking is prohibited because you MAY cause a brother or a sister to stumble in their walk with God. (As is inferred by the writings of the Apostle Paul and the Prophet Ezekiel.) Of course, other denominations have opposing views about marriage, snakes, dancing, and the list goes on and on.
- Some believers acknowledge Jesus as being White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestan, Others see Him as a white southern boy with a rebel heart, Others see Him as the Pope (but on a much grander scale), others see Him as a Black man, others as Oriental, and of course now there is the crowd that sees Jesus as not a man but a woman, a queer, a homosexual, or even a transgender person. And let us not forget the ever popular Kanye West’s Book of Yezus! (And I am certain this is not an all inclusive look into the ideologies of all denominations!)
According to Lee Strobel in his book “The Case for the Real Jesus: A Journalist Investigates Current Attacks on the Identity of Christ”we are, essentially, living in a world of do-it-yourself spirituality. Man reads of God and His commandments, moral doctrines & tenets, laws, etc. And since mankind does not like the way things are, he has to change them for his own good. Because once man changes it, it will make everyone else feel better about themselves. And why does man do this..?..he does this to garner support from others so they too can feel good about themselves. And lo and behold, a new religion is born, a new denomination of Christianity arises. Man seems to think that God is too strict and since mankind as a whole ‘feels’ so bad about himself, which is not good in the eyes of his fellow man. His fellow man changes a few things so his fellow man can feel better about himself. There you have it. A new religion, a new denomination, and a new 501(c)3 Non-profit Organization is born into the world, in order to collect millions from it’s followers.
If you are tired of feeling bad about yourself…you don’t have to repent and change your ways. NO! You can just become a member of a new organization which says all you want to believe about God…no need in paying attention to what the bible ACTUALLY says about God…it is all about interpretation and sleight of hand! Voilà you have become a new man, or woman, in the eyes of your fellow man in the name of God (the one he fashioned after the desires of your heart!) You may as well have accomplished a lobotomy on yourself.
What is it that I have heard over the years about people’s personal beliefs about God:
- God doesn’t really send people to hell.
- If God is all good, why is there evil?
- God promised me…
- God could not possibly exist because there is evil, hate, murder, war, etc.
- God is the basis of a religion that judges, why can’t I just be a good person?
But what most people fail to realize is that God created man to live by His rules and commandments and His word. But as man comes to a point of reality in his own life where God does not quickly and swiftly correct and chastise him for his wrong doing, man becomes bolder and bolder in his actions against God and His will. This separating man from God, man increasingly becomes a god in his own right and in his own mind. All things are permissible when you either believe you are god, or there is no god/God. And we see this truism through the biblical texts of Sodom & Gomorrah, Jonah, the trials of King David, Gideon, Joshua, and others. Man forgets that quick and swift judgment of God is not the same as man’s quick and swift judgment. God can judge you up until your last breath, allowing you the ability to change your evil ways, or after your final breath and grant you eternal judgment; on the other hand, man intends “quick and swift judgment” to mean right after your iniquity is perpetrated, or soon thereafter.
Consider, I implore you, to take God at His word and understand His word. This can only be done through continual lifelong reading and studying. This is a lifelong commitment. And when you read and study the Word of God, you must make it a point to study, and research, the culture and understanding of the words written. And after a time when you have gotten comfortable with that aspect of God’s Word, you might even consider a deeper understanding through the study and research of the Greek, Aramaic, Syriac, and Hebrew writings. By leaning such you will deeply enrich your understanding and the intended meanings of the written Word. An added dimension, if you will.
As a word of warning, do not give in to your base desires to create a mix-n-match Jesus and/or God, but study and research so you will enhance your true understanding of God, God’s meaning of life, and God’s purpose for you in this life. Seek Him and He will be found by YOU!
May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!
MK Murphy, PhD, DD