As I stated in a previous blog, I was raised in the Catholic church. I also worked in an Evangelical Free Church and a Lutheran and a Baptist church. I have attended services in main line churches and charismatic churches. I have experienced legalistic congregations and liberal congregations. I have also had the pleasure of attending services in a synagogue and a black southern gospel church.
What I found in each one was people from all walks of life, races, color and yes, sexual orientation. The leaders that taught or preached came from many different backgrounds and interpreted biblical truths differently. Many churches claim to use the Bible as their text but no one but the pastor/priest/leader ever opens one in the service. Many people seem to blindly follow the teachings without questioning the authenticity. Many people who come from some of these churches believe they have the answer and proceed to look down their noses at those that don't believe it yet.
Sometimes the perception of the outside world is that of hypocrisy. Some hear snippets of what they think the Bible says and then holds it as a measuring stick against those that are in the church to how good a Christian they are.
Unfortunately, this has led many breakdowns in the relationships between believers and unbelievers. Unbelievers, or those that believe in God or a higher authority but don't read the Bible or believe Jesus to be God or the Son of God, are quick to point out when Christians are not acting as Christians should. I agree many Christians fail to walk in paths of righteousness and that causes a wall for those watching.
Years ago my dad stopped going to church because he couldn't stand seeing the people stand up and read the Bible on Sunday morning then lying, stealing or cheating the rest of the week. What dad didn't realize is these people are only human. All men and women fail at times. We don't like to think they will, but we can always count on people failing us at some time. What dad didn't learn in church is that we aren't supposed to be looking at the people in church. We are supposed to be looking at the only perfect example for us. That perfect example is Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ was born to be our example for how we are to live. He is the only human we should ever look up to to see how we are doing. Now I realize you may not believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God, but he did say he was. Thus far, no one has proved he isn't.
Oh, and Jesus didn't come to show us up. He didn't come to point out our flaws and laugh at us. Not at all. He came to do the work he was sent to do. He came to fulfill the prophecies of the early prophets. He came to sacrifice himself for each of us.
Many believe he was a great teacher. I chuckle when I hear this. Why? Because if you think Jesus was a great teacher and this great teacher says he is the Son of the Living God, then, why don't you believe it? Well, now you may think he's not a great teacher, but just an ordinary man living an extraordinary life. Why?
People need to dig deeper and ask God (if he exists) to help them to understand what the Bible truth is. Start by asking God to prove to you who He is. That's what I did as a teenager and He did! Then ask Him to help you understand what the Bible says and who Christ was/is.
So many are quick to judge the beliefs of Christians by what they see Christians do. But again you are looking at the wrong person. Look to the Christ.
My heart breaks for many friends and family who have tossed the Bible aside, thrown Christ out with the heretics and refuse to find out for themselves who and what they are. Christians want to share the love of Christ, but just the mention of his name gets people's backs up. Many Christians do not understand their own doctrine, many have been taught incorrectly and then told they shouldn't study scripture for themselves. That's how we got Jim Jones and the like.
Many get turned off by Christians "proselytizing" and again I chuckle. Will these same people be turned off if they truly heard the message? If, in the end, the Christians had the Truth to happiness, peace and love, wouldn't they have wanted to hear it?
Such a quandary!
I heard this song a while back and I wanted so much to share it with all my friends and family to get them to think. THINK! Then check out what people are saying before you blindly follow or toss aside what we are trying to share with you.
click here for lyrics