Search 'YeahImABeliever' for specific subjects, words, and Scriptures.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Whose horse? What saddle?

Here's the point that some people will go their whole lives and never get, you can put a thousand dollar saddle on a hundred dollar horse, and at the end of the day you still have a hundred dollar horse.  Yeah, yeah, I know that some of you reading this figure that I've finally gone all the way 'round the bend.  But, believe it or not, there is a method to my madness, so just hang in there! 

Let's call it whatever you want to, thousand dollar saddles and hundred dollar horses, smoke and mirrors, mirrors and smoke, sleight of hand.  You figure out what you want to call it, whatever you're comfortable with.  Because that seems to be the most important issue in our country today.  The most important issue is not  the issue at hand, but how we reconcile the issue at hand.  Example (I'll use a favorite peeve of mine): A majority of churches no longer have an altar call at the end of services.  When I have personally have asked a number of other ministers why this is, I get the answer that the issue of altar calls makes too many of their congregants uncomfortable, so it's something that isn't discussed.  Notice that it isn't the altar calls themselves, but the issue of not having them, that makes the people uncomfortable.  This particular issue is a kind of 'double-end-around' issue.  What I mean by that is that the reason why the altar calls were stopped is safely tucked away out of sight, and therefore out of mind (unless that pesky Holy Spirit gets involved, and I pray He will!).  So by refusing to discuss the fact that there are no altar calls, people are spared the uncomfortableness of having to discuss the original reason, which would by necessity have to be part of the discussion on the issue of no altar calls.  There, have you got it?  What really concerns me here is that not too many years ago, just about the only place you saw or read about this type of illusions, or disillusions, was in politics.  But now, unfortunately, this is the case no longer. 

Before we go any farther, let me try to answer a question that may be popping up in some minds.  Some of you may be wondering if I'm a liberal Democrat, or a conservative Republican, or maybe a liberal Republican or a conservative Democrat.  I suppose that these are fair questions, but for me the problems began when church members start identifying themselves as a liberal this or a conservative that.  Maybe some of you are wondering which of those I am in church, a liberal or a conservative.  Okay, I'll give it a shot to describe myself in both the church setting and the political venue.   I'm a Christian.  I'm not a liberal Christian, or a conservative Christian.  I'm not a Republican Christian, or a Democratic Christian.  I'm a Christian, and just like those early disciples at Antioch were identified as Christians, so am I called a Christian.  That's it, the whole sheebang, the whole kit-and-cabootle, the big cheese.

'And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch.'  (Acts 11:26    NKJV)

As you may have figured out already, I'm not denominational, and that's because I've yet to read anywhere in the Scriptures that Believers are to be identified by any name, title, or label other than what the disciples were called there in Antioch.  Do I think that denominations are evil or against what the Scriptures teach? I'll answer this question with a 'conditional' no.  So long as the doctrines taught and preached are in no way contrary to Scripture, then no, I don't see denominations as evil or against the teachings of Scriptures.  My primary concern with different denominations is that most of them have the tendency to add doctrinal elements to their worship rituals that are not based on Scripture.  (We used to call this practice 'legalism' back in the day, but I understand that the word 'legalism' isn't politically correct these days, so we just ignore these things, we mustn't make anyone uncomfortable you know.) 

Let's get back to our issue today, and yes, I do have the tendency to wander a bit, I sure hope that doesn't make anybody uncomfortable. 

It seems to be the question at the top of every bodies list(s) these days as to whether or not Obama is a Christian or a muslim.  This question itself is actually what prompted my ramblings today.  A wide variety of people have a wide variety of answers, and explanations, and accusations, and..... It just goes on and on, continually feeding on itself.  The most troubling aspect of this whole issue is the thousand dollar saddle and hundred dollar horse thing.  Most of those who weigh in on this debate don't really care about whether he is a Christian or a muslimboth foreign and abroad. 

Now I'm going to do something different, that I've only done once or twice before.  I'm going to stop right here and leave it up to you to spend some time (hopefully a considerable amount of time) in prayer over these questions.  My prayer is that you will come before the Lord, and claim His promises that He will guide you in any decisions you may need to make.  These changes aren't only to do with who you may or may not vote for any time the election polls are open.  These changes are much more important than that.  These changes, should there be need for changes, are directly related to your status before our God in heaven.  Liberals, conservatives, moderates, Democrats, Republicans.  Before you decide anything, read your Bible!  See what the Scriptures says about how we, as New Testament Believers, should not only be identified by others, but more importantly, how we have to see ourselves before God.

Be Blessed my Brothers and Sisters before the Lord!

No comments:

Post a Comment