3 THINGS HURTING CHRISTIANS and ONE WAY WE CAN ALL HELP
REV. CHRISTIAN, Up Close & Personal
As Christians we must individually grow and know who to follow, who to support and why. Remember the world takes our example more seriously than our Christian advice (judgment).
Here are 3 things I believe are hurting Christians :
#1. Mega Prosperity ‘personality driven’ preachers –
As Christians we need to be more aware of those representing the teachings of Jesus. We must ask ourselves – do they teach by their life example or are they just a voice expounding from biblical memory of scripture without true understanding. When we forget our past we’re doomed to repeat it.
For the record – I’m not new to the Mega Christian Movements in America. As a boy I was raised on Oral Roberts and his multimillion dollar hospital, Jimmy Swaggart’s jet and the great Billy Graham peaceful conservative lifestyle. Then as I got older, I remember watching Richard Roberts, Robert Schuller, Kenneth Copeland, Benny Hinn, PTL (Jim Bakker), and now we have the Paul Crouchs’ of TBN, the Paula Whites, Joyce Meyers, Creflow Dollar, TD Jakes, the Mike Murdocks and of course the most popular Joel Osteen.
Now, what do these preachers all have in common? Outside of Billy Graham, they all lived or live multi-million dollar lavish lifestyles as favored Christian Kings and Queens, all the while claiming to ‘need money’ to feed and clothe the needy worldwide.
Is this what Jesus taught? Are they not aware of the embarrassment this ‘type of hype’ brings to Christianity? Especially in the poorer countries where humble servants of God (at the risk of being killed) struggle to help the lost find Christ, while in America preachers brag about having Gods ‘special favor’ in their prosperity.
Do they really need to live in big mansions and have multiple luxury cars and planes? Do they really need to have multi-millions of dollars of real estate in their ministry portfolios for their security while discussing the “coming of the Lord” at any moment? Do they really need to give Bentleys away to one another or allow their church to buy them Rolls Royce’s while asking for ‘more to feed the poor’?
Is this the true message of Jesus? Is this Christianity in action? I am not here to judge, I’m here to ask the questions before Jesus returns.
If you inquire about these people, their lifestyles and review their personal reputations among the most humble ministers of the Lord, you’ll quickly see through their unfortunate misunderstanding of scripture pertaining to self worth. Example: they flaunt their worldly possessions of which Jesus saw no value. Remember the temptation from Satan described in Matt. 4: 8-10? “The devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: Worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only”.
In the end I don’t think we can barter with God by using our tithes as seeds for more lavish things way beyond our needs.
I think it’s time ‘Mega-Ministers’ scaled back their lavish lifestyles and lived on 10% of their incomes, giving 90% away to feed, clothe and help the needy; first in their city, state and country and then the world.
How can we help the world be Christian strong if we’re Christian weak in America? If we don’t start restoring the Christian principles that America was founded on we won’t have a chance. And it may be too late, if we can’t get our Mega Ministers to realize they weaken the body of Christ by living life in such a gaudy way. Jesus said, “One’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses”.
#2. Evangelist / Preachers who refuse to use repentance and baptism to begin the ‘born again’ process as Jesus taught.
We need to tell it like it is. The whole born again process is the most important beginning for anyone coming to JESUS and being HIS.
‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
PETER TAUGHT – WHAT JESUS SAID
On Heaven Jesus said,
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven”.
Jesus makes no excuses for those who don’t follow Him, every day in every way. You’re either worthy of Him or you’re not!
Being a ‘born again’ Christian might be simple to explain but it’s not easy to do. It should be represented in a truthful way. It’s serious and our souls are at stake. We should be teaching exactly what Jesus said in the Gospels about sin, repentance, love, forgiveness and discipleship. We need to know what Jesus said even more so than what Peter, James, John and Paul said or anyone else since them.
ARE YOU REALLY BORN AGAIN?
There’s a difference between those who teach the gospel according to Jesus and those who teach the gospel according to Paul. (It’s called Pauline Christianity) and it’s worth your time to review the Great Debate and decide for yourself. Just remember, it all started with “what Jesus said”, and He also had the last word in Revelation.
#3. Non-Practicing Christians – The ones who embarrass Christ, by their false confessions and dishonest behavior, while calling themselves-non practicing Christians.
As a counselor, I am always surprised while talking to Christians when they say they “know very little of the Gospels”. They actually call themselves “Non-Practicing Christians” and they expect to enter heaven simply because they once said a prayer of repentance in church or while touching the TV screen. Most of them didn’t even know what the word ‘repentance’ really meant. And yet they expect to get into Heaven while they’re playing in Hell.
WHAT IS REPENTANCE?
Whoever thinks they’re going to the same place Jesus is without following His Example – truthfully and daily – is sincerely wrong. It’s true; no one can snatch you out of His hand. However, if you’re out sinning and fooling around and not in HIS hand … then what?
I think all non-practicing Christians should be warned and informed:
You’re either with the Lord or you’re not. Be hot or cold but never be lukewarm, or He will spit you out of His mouth. (see Rev. 3:16)
•That sounds very specific to me.
ITS TIME WE MEASURE OUR EXAMPLE BY JESUS CHRIST
• THE ONE WAY we can ALL HELP, it’s time we know what Jesus meant when He said, “I AM the Way, the Truth and the Life”.
I think we ALL need to know WHAT JESUS SAID and decide if it matters to us. Our decision determines if we’ll read HIS WORDS.
The great Bible ScholarHenry H. Halley, said it this way:
“The Four Gospels are, by all odds, the most Important part of the Bible: more important than all the rest of the Bible put together: more important than all the rest of the books in the whole world put together, for we could better afford to be without the knowledge of everything else than to be without the knowledge of Jesus Christ.”
When we read the ‘words of Jesus’ (highlighted in red) in our Bible, we quickly see the intensity with which Jesus speaks and teaches. When He speaks He isn’t vague. He’s specific. He tells us over and over again to hear His Words, and to follow His Commandments.
Jesus said,“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another”. Now that’s specific, and that’s why it’s so important to know, that you know, what did Jesus say to do.
In the end, our test will not be based on what Peter, James, John and Paul said (or any other preacher); it’ll be based on what Jesus said.
IF Jesus Christ matters to you then dedicate yourself to HIS WORDS. Be the example of HIS LOVE and you’ll be called HIS DISCIPLE forevermore and you’ll fulfill what the Apostles taught too!
Now, I leave you with these words from Jesus:
“If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me”. (John 14:23-24)
I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak.” – John 12:49-50
If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. – John 8:31-32
On Discipleship Jesus said,
For the Record,
I believe we should ALL know, the story of Jesus and what He taught His Disciples, as well as what they taught in their letters about Him. We should also know what Paul said, how he was picked by Jesus and what Jesus said he had to do for Him, but we follow JESUS.
I believe our test will be based on WHAT JESUS SAID and our living example of Him – nothing more, nothing less. With that in mind, I leave you with the ‘last instructions’ Jesus gave HIS DISCIPLES –
May God bless all those who serve His Will,
everyday in every way.
In His Word and Love,
I serve, as your brother in Christ.
PS: Here’s my Conclusions in Christ, I ask you to make one too.
Who is Rev. Christian
His calling to ministry was simple and clear. While in prayer, Jesus told him to “tell them what I told them and nothing more”
And with that instruction, he composed a book that clearly organizes the “words of Jesus” into a teaching / learning format that anyone can use in bible study, church groups or for daily devotion. It would take him a total of 12 years to write, edit and publish in full color.
The book is called, “What Did Jesus Say – The Seven Messages from the Master”. It contains over 500 scriptures spoken directly by Jesus as highlighted in red in the NKJV Bible, without commentary or opinion its message is only the words of Jesus.
This book is dedicated to everyone who wants to walk with Jesus, hear His words, and understand His message.
To send email- Terry@RevChristian.com –
To visit his ministry website – www.FoundationsForLife.org
To review his book- www.WhatDidJesusSay.org