Play-Dough Jesus

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Coov, Aug 4, 2005.

  1. Coov

    Coov
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    I have been posting at a multi-denominational board for some time, and this really stood out for me.
    Our differences as Christians as a whole are based on the ability to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit or not. Christ will not reveal one truth to one person, and something totally different to another. Christ and His Word are a perfect foundation that man has seemingly manipulated into an abyss of a molded interpretation defined in religion, theology, and doctrine. I recognize that and I am not susceptible to it, and I welcome Christ to continue to teach me and mold me into his will through learning from my mistakes, not clinging to a man made theology. Regardless of what man seems to do to hurt this foundation through these divisions, Christ still stands unmoved, and unchanged. Who Christ truly is, and what man makes Him to be are two different things. I will take the True Christ over mans version of him any and every day of the week. We are the clay, not out Savior!

    What seems more and more prominent is that Christ is molded to fit their own needs and the Truth of Christ is almost ignored totally. How much mental white-out of the Word of God from others do you see from day to day? Does it help you see all that Christ truly is despite of what Het is molded into? Or does it make you feel defeated and depressed that it is so common?

    [ August 04, 2005, 01:02 PM: Message edited by: Coov ]
     
  2. menageriekeeper

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    I'm not sure that all of it is caused so much by a "mental white-out" as by a lack of discipleship.

    Case in point:

    My MIL who I love dearly and have little doubt of her salvation was raised by hellfire and brimstone. By that I mean she was taught all about the wrathful God who finds us lacking and condemns us to hell for our sins and sometimes punishes us on this earth as well. Unfortunately she wan't nearly as well taught about the flip side of the coin, grace. She fully expects for bad things to happen because she's done something to "make God mad". Or if bad things happen, it's because she's done something to deserve it. She's never come to the full realization that once our sins are removed, they are gone for good.(I'm doing my best btw, to show her different, but what can be done after she has believed this way for over 50 years?)

    This happened in a good oldfashioned IFB church. If there is this much ignorance in our own denomination about the plain truth of the Bible, why would we expect other denoms to be any different?
     
  3. Coov

    Coov
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    That is a great point. Where I am mostly coming from with starting all of this is more for the "Christians" that are so founded on the base of doctrine or religion rather than the Word of God. There are so many out there that lose that foundation. Now that I think about it, the majority will have been led astray...

    For instance. The thread I used to be a huge part of is a group of Catholics, methodists, etc... It is just amazing to be how much mans involvement in doctrine, etc, can create such a fork in the road from the Truth of Christ. Sure, it seems the generic foundation is there, but the objectivity is lacking. I hope that makes sense.
     
  4. TexasSky

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    Coov,

    One thing I've observed over the years is how many people in this world never read God's word with an open mind and open heart to the word. Their reading is always "tainted" by what someone else told them a verse meant.

    Not sure how to explain what I mean.
    (Using a generic - "you" in this) -

    But - If you pick up your devotional book, and the theme for the week is at the top of the page, and you're given four bible verses to look up, and read and then a little sermon-like-blurb in the devotional book - you'll probably read that scripture's meaning to be just what the devotional book's author said it was- - whether he was right or not; or whether or not that was the message God wanted you to get from the passage.

    But - if you pick up your bible, and pray, and ask God to speak to you from His word, and start at Chapter 1 vs 1, and just read - in context - you may find out that Christ or Paul or James or John or Peter were talking about something much broader than the devotional author was, or something that relates much more to your life as a Christian.

    You might even discover that your minister has fallen into his own personal rut. I've seen really good ministers do this. They have an issue in their life that is very important to them, and they preach on it, and preach on it, and preach on it, and preach on it, and they preach on it so much, they almost forget that it isn't the ONLY issue they need to preach on. They aren't intentionally doing this - its just that God keeps speaking to them about that issue, and they assume He must want them to speak to others about it, but .. maybe - He is working on the preacher's life, not the congregation when he puts that on the man's heart.

    It frightens me how many things people believe are in God's word that aren't. The reason people believe them is because someone taught them that it was a rule or law of God, and they assumed that whoever told them that knew the bible better than they did, so they must be right, and they must be standing on the bible.

    The majority of the Catholic church is an example of that. Half the Baptists in the world don't know what a Calvinist or an Arminian is, much less whether they are one or the other or not.

    We have got to personalize God.

    The greatest pastors and missionaries in the world are NOT necessarily the people who graduated with honors from theological seminaries. They are people who loved God so much they prayed and studied His word, and personalized it, and then shared it.

    (Which - fortunately - by fault ARE most of our theological seminary graduates. Lets be honest, most ministers didn't go to seminary to get rich. They went because they craved a deeper understanding of God's word.)
     
  5. menageriekeeper

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    LOL TS, I still don't know the difference between Calvinist or Arminian! Before I came here, I didn't even know there were such things. I gotta say, it hasn't begun to matter to me yet which one I am, if I am even either one!

    However, if you ask me who Jesus is, I'll be able to give you an answer and back it up with scripture.

    When my MIL was young(and me too) the authority was: Preacher first, parents second. MIL wasn't encouraged to read and interpret the scripture for herself, she was told what it said and dared to disagree(which means if you dared you were in for trouble). To a certain extent, I was raised the same way. It would never have dawned on me to question what I was taught, if other events in my life hadn't shown me clearly that neither the preacher nor my parents were perfect.

    Even in families where children are raised in a more loving environment, if the parents theology isn't on track, the kids might not know to ask questions. Why would their parents tell them wrong? Parents are perfect, right? So are pastors, right?

    Then add to that, the idea that most people prefer to learn about new things in the easiet, most enjoyable form possible. It is much easier to let someone else do the work of reading that big Book than it is to read and understand it for ourselves. No different than reading the newspaper to find out what is happening at the city council meeting than being there in person. Except the person doing the retelling might not have read it themselves and is instead telling what they heard someone else say who probably also didn't read for themselves and are just retelling what someone else yet said who.......

    I think you see the problem.

    The only solution I see is for the churches to clearly disciple the members even on issues they think have already been covered. And continue to do it over and over again.
     
  6. Johnv

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    True, but the Holy Spirit may (and often does) reveal one thing to one person, while revealing a different thing to another. We often make the mistake of thinking that the thingt the Holy Spirit has revealed to us is supposed to be the truth for everyone. It's called presumption of the Holy Spirit, and we do it all the time.

    I can't imagine why you would think that. Just because most paintings of Christ show him with light skin, Italian features, white robes, and never cracking a smile, what makes you think that we mold Jesus into our image?

    (disclaimer: that was sarcsm)
    I don't know if any one man today can have a complete picture or understanding of who Christ really is. We're only human after all, and our senroty abilities are limited. Thankfully, I don't have to have a complete picture of Christ to know him, I just have to enter into a relatioship with him.
     
  7. Coov

    Coov
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    Yeah, I know what you are saying and I agree, but I am referring to differences in doctrine, theology, religions etc...

    I have spent so much time. energy, and emotion at this other thread I keep referring to. I developed quite a bond with a few, especially the very few who see eye to eye with the Word of God (particularly one who has become my best friend). The fellowship turned to debate, and the debate turned into an attack on the Word of God. I used to leave there feeling so defeated. After just walking away and regaining perspective I realized that their opinions did not change the Word of God! I felt the need to defend it and protect it... It still stands! I think what hurts the most is how blind some can be, especially after bonding and all of the fellowship. Bragging about getting drunk, saying that the Bible is out of date, Abortion IS a choice, yes iit is the truth because Wesley says so... CHRISTIANS!!!? I just started to see how Christ is manipulated to fit their needs, and then started to notice it all over. To me it is so depressing, at the same time it encourages me. I praise God for my enlightenment and for the rock foundations that He is!
     

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