| An outsider looks in|
I received this email from a concerned outside observer. I thought I'd post it, and invite your responses - as insiders:
There's something I've been wondering about, and I may have talked to you about it before. I watched a couple episodes of Jimmy Swaggart, and I looked up his type of "ministry" on the internet. I just can't understand why "the church" says nothing about him and his minions. I mean, the bible says that christians have no business bugging non christians about what they do, but that they have a responsibility to do something if someone who claims to be a christian does something un-Christlike. Why aren't people speaking out? Why doesn't anyone say, "the bible says that we are to be stewards of the earth, not that we have a right to use it and abuse it until there is nothing left of it. The bible says that even bad people can perform miracles. The bible says that God is love, and anyone who preaches a message of hate is not of God."
I just think that the respectable part of the church (if there is any left) ought to educate people so that even poor and desperate people can easily find out that speaking in tongues does not mean babbling incoherrently, it means that even when you speak in your own language, people who don't speak your language can still understand you (I'm talking about Jimmy Swaggart's son, who told his congregation that if they came up to the front to be touched by the "spirit," they would start speaking in tongues, and "proved" it by babbling some nonsense syllables). I don't know if it would help to name names, but I'm sure that firmly repeating the actual message of the bible could help a lot of desperate people. And the huge number of people who think that if they help armageddon come, by killing lots of people, then they will be whisked away to heaven - do they have to slaughter half the planet before anyone speaks up and tells them that they're full of baloney and need to actually read the bible? I know that there isn't worldwide consensus about the meanings of every little bit of the bible, but surely anyone who pays attentions can see that to pillage the earth and slaughter its inhabitants species by species, race by race, is not the work of God. The muslims are getting their message out every day, that the actions of many people claiming to be muslim are against the koran (among other things, the koran is even more clear than the bible in saying that women are to be respected and treated with honour, and that they are to be educated just like the men). So why don't I hear christians preaching God's word instead of money and the glory of being on television?
Are there people speaking out about this? Why aren't they on the news? Is everyone too busy praying to look outside their windows? Do they think that these televangelist abominations will increase the number of christians and it doesn't matter if those christians think it's perfectly reasonable to kill someone for having a different belief? Do they really think that they won't be held accountable for their silence? Why don't I hear people on tv every week talking about what the bible actually says?
| 2007/2/17 19:08||Profile|
| Re: An outsider looks in|
v6 O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift my face to thee, my God, for our iniquities have risen higher than our heads, and our guilt has mounted up to the heavens.
v 10 And now, O our God, what shall we say after this? For we have forsaken thy commandments
v 13 And after all that has come upon us for our evil deeds and for our great guilt, seeing that thou, our God, hast punished us less than our iniquities deserved and hast given us such a remnant as this, 14 shall we break thy commandments again and intermarry with the peoples who practice these abominations? Wouldst thou not be angry with us till thou wouldst consume us, so that there should be no remnant, nor any to escape? 15 O Lord the God of Israel, thou art just, for we are left a remnant that has escaped, as at this day. Behold, we are before thee in our guilt, for none can stand before thee because of this.
Also Romans 2: 19 and if you are sure that you are a guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, 20 a corrector of the foolish, a teacher of children, having in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth 21 you then who teach others, will you not teach yourself? While you preach against stealing, do you steal? 22 You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? 23 You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? 24 For, as it is written, The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.[/i][/b]
We are ashamed...
Yet tell your friend to look to Christ rather than to Cheristians, see Him, seek Him. Try to look past the sins, and apathy, and compromise with evil, among those who claim to be His followers.
| 2007/2/17 19:51|
| Re: An outsider looks in|
I agree with everything you said, except your position on tongues. The bible is clear that tongues isn't a normal earthly language with a "miraculous simultaneous translation" :-
[color=0000CC]For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries (Acts 14:2)[/color]
Two verses down the purpose of tongues is explained :-
[color=0000CC]He who speaks in a tongue edifies himself, but he who prophesies edifies the church(Acts 14:4)[/color]
The enemy works hard to create a lot of confusion in this area, and not without reason - he doesn't want Christians edifying themselves. Through the confusion that arises out of falsifications, misuse and abuse of Gods gifts, he is successfully getting a lot of Christians to throw the baby out with the bath water.
By the way, I don't speak in tongues, but I know a serious Christian that does. He rarely uses it in front of other people, and especially not for religious party tricks.
Coming back in line with the main topic of your thread, the enemy isn't getting enough "resisting" on these issues, which is why he hasn't fled. It looks like he is increasing his investment on this front instead.
| 2007/2/17 20:03||Profile|
| Re: An outsider looks in|
Hi...As a person who more times then not is a outsider,i recognize the spirit of their observation..Please forgive me if I'm wrong,but is this letter from a person who was once walking with God? (i hate the word backslidden)..
They seem far more hurt then one would expect.It seems nearly personal,that some Christians don't live up to their ideal..
I'm not saying their observations are wrong,far from it..But is their disgust really more about them barricading themselves from God??
It seems maybe this person went looking for confirmation,for why they shouldn't return to God?
Its a issue ive become acutely aware of in myself,im not criticizing them..Ive wasted so much time checking out diversions in the faith..Constantly storing up ammunition just so i could point the finger,anything to stop me having to face God..
I think its fear,heaven forbid i would have to look beyond others,and confront what God wants of me..
forgive me if i'm a mile off here..
| 2007/2/17 21:01||Profile|
| Re: An outsider looks in|
Where are we? Not usually on TV.
We don't generally run churches, although you will find some true followers of Jesus here and there.
But we're here on the internet, and we're looking for you. We're looking for anyone who's looking for God. We talk about Jesus, not Christianity. Our rules and regulations are Jesus' example. We are the first to admit we are imperfect. We accept correction when lovingly given, and proven by scripture on scripture.
This is why I avoid being called a Christian.
I am a follower of Jesus of Nazareth, a Messianic Gentile. He is my Savior, my 'Kinsman Redeemer'.
I follow His stated laws to the best of my ability, and repent constantly that I follow them so badly.
Matthew 22:37. Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38. This is the first and great commandment.
39. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
I strive to follow the entire Bible, not just a part of it. I try not to take anything out of context.
I don't want to be lumped into the category called Christanity. I don't know what the followers of Christianity believe. I don't think they know either.
But if someone points a gun at me and asks, "Are you a Christian?", I'll say yes, for then I will know what they mean.
And I'll be with Jesus the next moment.
| 2007/2/18 3:45||Profile|