Contrasting the Church of today with Jesus' Church!
-------A post to fellowship of Christian Athletes on myspace in response to a brother's question.---------
CS Major wrote:
I was listening to Pastor Joel Osteen. He said that if you want to be saved raise your hands repeat this prayer after me........
Now how can you say someone is going to be saved through these action?
I also wonderful how many ppl has he shipped wreck by this completely wrong message?
No and these hucksters do this on purpose. It's a way of selling a cheap salvation.
Here is how Jesus' church operates. Look at the contrast below on how the world's 'church' operates.
* Each person is being immersed into his character. This is a deep process since..he has a deep character :-) Salvation is by repenting and being immersed into Jesus' character/name. That's the source of real salvation.
* As a result those who really are being immersed manifest growth. A steady..consistent growth. They respond to correction when it's offered. Matthew 18:15 is employed whenever a sin occurs so that there is complete unity and nothing to cause division.
* Each one considers the other higher than themself. Thus there is no place for any hierarchy except that Yeshua is the high priest and everyone else is just a priest. Those who are Elders are to be ensamples and not to lord over anyone.
* They recognize that biblical stewardship involves doing what priests did. Administering all that comes to them AS a tithe (since they are technically working day and night in the house of God...so that anything they feel led to do is an opportunity for the world to put God to the test through them etc.. not just 'regular work' anymore. Rather they have entered into the Hebrews 4 Sabbath rest with jesus) and tithing a tithe of the tithe (numbers 18 something..) to the high priest who is Jesus. Thus they give to the least of these...so that they can literally give to Jesus.
IN CONTRAST...here's the typical 'church'/busienss of our day
* A bunch of people get together and maybe there seems to be some moving of the Holy Spirit and momentum gathers.
* Religious users see the opportunity and incorporate and set up an administration.
* Most of the people gladly accept the relationship because they don't want to be personally accountable to God; rather they want a middle man. A 'head'. An earthly man they can call "Papa" spiritually..even though Jesus specifically said to call no earthly man Papa. Sure Paul said he 'fathered' various groups. But that was PAST TENSE and only means that he fathered them to the degree that he brought the gospel first to them. So? Does that toss Jesus' command out? No that all the more emphasizes Jesus' command as Paul says "Follow me AS I follow Christ". He commends people for keeping him accountable just as he keeps them accountable. Nobody is right all the time. We need each other.
* So a 'nicolaitan' system develops in which people nike 'lord over' the 'laos' common people. And they develop into dumb little sheep who are socialized into parroting whatever the head pastor teaches instead of holding him accountable. The head pastor assumes titles that are abominable..like 'Reverend'. Good grief. Look the word up people. :-)
* ONE of the tactics that are common at this point to maintain status quo/job security is to tell people they are 'leity' which isn't even in the bible of course...and that they are 'clergy'. And to solidify this expectation.
* Next they teach a cheapened salvation so that mass numbers of people will feel like they fit in! Commonly this being that as long as you say the right prayer and/or get baptized the right way in water...or get confirmed or whatever...that you are in! And of course then they impose that the fruits of your salvation are paying tithe and attending and they jam this down your throat ad infinitum.
* Next they maintain a system where most of the focus is on THEM so that people have minimal time to actually interact with each other and do ministry together. In this way there will be a minimal amount of conflict.
* They preach sermons even bringing Matthew 18:15 into question so that if conflict DOES arise they can say "Well the scripture means to bring it to the church LEADERSHIP..not the church per sey...." This way if anyone does try to follow it, the church never finds out if the person is a good tithe payer :-)
Good post bro. -Bob