Monday, March 13, 2017

Just My Thoughts

I hear a lot of uproar lately about what IS and ISN'T appropriate for a Christian.  I hear people talking about the Disney movie Beauty and the Beast.  I hear people questioning the movie The Shack.  Should they see it or shouldn't they?  What about Fifty Shades?  Most of the girls I know RAVED over the books and can't wait to see the movies.  Is that OK??

I sure can't give you an answer straight from God's lips, but I can give you my opinion, and I'd love to hear yours.  Please don't leave a mean spirited comment, I'll delete it.  But I would welcome your Biblical opinion.  I want to live a life that brings honor to my Savior.

First of all, I want to say that my opinion is just that, my opinion.  And frankly,  your opinion is just your opinion too.  I know a lot of Christian people who love Jesus, and yet their actions and lives look different from mine.  We all have things we think are "OK" and things we think aren't "OK" for Christians, but is that really as it should be?  I mean, shouldn't we all be on the same page when it comes to what is and isn't sin??  Cause we're all gonna be judged by God and I don't think he has separate standards based on my denomination or my opinion.  Just my thoughts.

I don't drink alcohol.  Not a drop.  I don't drink beer.  I don't have a glass of wine with dinner.  None.  Can I tell you that the Bible absolutely forbids a Christian drinking alcohol?  Nope.  But nowhere in the Bible do I see Christians encouraged to use alcohol.  Except for a couple of verses that talk about using wine for medicinal purposes, all of the verses that talk about alcohol are warning people against the evils of excess drinking.  Lots of lives were ruined by someone abusing alcohol, lots of families torn apart by someone abusing alcohol.  So why play with fire??  I mean, if you want to have a glass of wine with your dinner I guess that's your business, but why would you even let yourself get in the habit of drinking a liquid that alters your mind, and can become an addiction?  I have read blogs that purport to be written by Christian ladies and I see pictures of them smiling with wine glasses in their hands and the next post is about Jesus.   This bothers me.  Just my thoughts.

I didn't read the series of books "Fifty Shades of Grey," and I promise you I won't be reading them.  I can assure you I haven't seen any of the movies, don't intend to.  And yet I see on Facebook ladies commenting about the books and getting together to go see the movies . . . and MOST of those same people commenting about those books and going to see the movies are ladies who attend church every Sunday and if you asked them if they were Christian they would say "yes."  So what kind of witness do you have to the unsaved when you're sitting in the same movie theater watching what pretty much boils down to pornography?  The Bible is very clear on what we are to focus on:  Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things."  Girls Fifty Shades is neither noble or right or pure.  Just my thoughts.

The Shack.  I have read the book "The Shack."  It was very thought provoking.  Is it gospel?  Nope.  Do I believe God is a black woman?  Nope.  Did I enjoy the book?  Yes, I actually did.  It made me think.  But it is not what I base my faith on.  I base my faith on one book . . . the Bible.  The problem is, there is a big group of people who read that book or watched the movie and they think it's Biblical . . . . that same big group of people who believe that
"Cleanliness is next to Godliness and "Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder" are really in the Bible.  And so these things lull the unsaved into a false sense of security.  Jesus loves everybody (He does).  Everybody's going to heaven (they aren't).  All roads lead to Jesus, you just need to do what feels right for you (uh, NO, THAT IS NOT IN THE BIBLE).  They think to themselves, well so and so goes to church, and they're here at this movie, so if it's OK for them, it's OK for me.  I don't know if I will go see the movie or not because while I don't think The Shack is evil, what message am I sending to the unsaved if I go see that movie??  Just my thoughts.

Gonna go way out on a limb here and say that I do not believe we, the New Testament Church, are obligated to give 10% of our income to the church a/k/a tithing.  I believe tithing was a very specific Old Testament directive to a very specific group of people so that the priests of the temple would be supported and Jesus did away with that, along with all those animal sacrifices when he was resurrected.  Do I believe we are to give?  YES, ABSOLUTELY.  I attend church and I put money in the offering every month (I get paid once a month so I give my offering once a month).  I contribute monthly to an orphanage.  I contribute monthly to a fund that provides food to local kids who don't always have all of the food they need. I contribute to lots of very worthy causes that help people.  But I don't believe we are under the Old Testament law of tithing (and I'd be very interested to hear your Biblical comments on this).  Just my thoughts.

These are just a few examples of things that Christians differ on.  While I believe the Bible is black and white on about 90% of issues, there are some grey areas.  But I think the church has tried so hard to be RELEVANT that we've allowed ourselves to make those grey areas MUCH bigger than just 10%.  We don't want to offend anybody because they might not come to church anymore. Well if we aren't preaching the truth in love then what good does it do for them to spend one hour sitting in a building with a cross on the top of it?  Churches exist to call sinners to repentance, and to teach Christians how to live a Godly life.  Jesus offended a lot of people because He loved them enough to tell them the truth. I think all pastors should do the same thing.  I think most churches are very social.  And while there's nothing wrong with being social, being social has nothing to do with worship or serving God or witnessing to the unsaved.  A men's group that spends most of its time going hunting and to sporting events is just a club.  If the bulk of the time those men are together isn't spent talking about Jesus or studying the Bible, then I think, again, we've lulled ourselves into thinking that any activity under the umbrella of a "church group" is Godly.  Friends I do not believe that.  And I'm not just picking on the guys here.  Ladies do the same thing.  If your ladies group spends most of their time on a shopping trip, or going out to eat, it's OK, but let's not convince ourselves that this is getting us closer to Jesus.  You've had fun, you've been entertained, but you haven't done anything for the kingdom of God.  And hear me, I'm not saying that you can't have fun with your Christian friends.  YOU SHOULD enjoy spending time with Christian friends outside the church.  But how much time are you spending studying the Word?  How much time are you spending witnessing to people who are dying and going to hell??

And don't get me started on youth groups.  We are entertaining our young people right to the gates of hell.  Again, NOTHING WRONG WITH GETTING THE CHURCH KIDS TOGETHER TO HAVE SOME FUN!!!  But if we are spending more time entertaining them so they keep coming back, than reminding them that heaven is real and so is hell, and either you belong to Jesus or you don't, then we are encouraging a generation to think that unless you're a murderer you're going to heaven, and that the Bible is open to interpretation, and that all roads lead to Jesus. And I am convinced that a HUGE PERCENTAGE of people who sit in our churches every day really believe this. . . . . . at least that's how they live their lives.

So after all that, THIS IS THE ONLY OPINION THAT MATTERS.  The Bible says this in Matthew Chapter 7 . . .
Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

This post is entitled "Just My Thoughts" and that is exactly what I have shared.  MY THOUGHTS.  If I'm wrong, then I want God to open my eyes to the truth.  Cause I believe we answer for every single thing we've done or thought.  And this may sound harsh, but what kind of FRUIT DO YOU BEAR if you're a wine drinking, Fifty Shades reading Christian?  How is that the "narrow gate" that FEW ARE FINDING?  Those Fifty Shades books sold MILLIONS OF COPIES.  That gate seems awfully wide to me.  The Bible tells us in Philippians 2:12 "work out your own salvation with fear and trembling."  

If I've offended you I'm really sorry.  I didn't intend to.  But I think if we call ourselves Christians, then we need to LIVE EVERY DAY IN WAYS THAT BRING GLORY AND HONOR TO JESUS.  Don't go where He wouldn't go.  Don't read what He wouldn't read.  Don't do what He wouldn't do.

Just my thoughts . . . . . .


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  2. I see your passion in that you are much concerned over these things that trouble your heart. You do not offend me. I detect a bit of Paul in you as you write. He often was admonishing and trying to get people on the right track in their behavior and their lives.
    This last 8 months have opened your eyes to many things. A lot of emotion and feelings as you have come face to face with what is most of importance to you. You see differently now. The growth it has caused in you. Not easy by any means. I see that this stuff of the world is a bit disturbing. But I look to the Author and Finisher of our faith and I read the Book and know that Christ wins. This world will pass away in that, after a hundred years are past, a whole new people will be here. Saying, life on earth is temporal. Every day it is "CHOOSE" whom you will serve. The Bible is clear to all who read it. God bless.

    1. Your comment brought tears to my eyes. I do not pretend to be the holiest person in the world. I am a sinner saved by grace. And sometimes I look at others who call themselves Christians and think “really?” It is my heart’s desire to hear “well done good and faithful servant.” Though I fail Him many times, I try with all my heart to serve Him. I want my life to reflect His love. I want others to see Him in me, even in the midst of my humanness. All of the things I wrote about do bother me. I wonder sometimes if I’m just being too legalistic, or if, as I fear, the “church” has gotten so far off the strait and narrow they don’t even realize it, and pastors won’t preach sin from the pulpit because they are afraid church attendance will drop. II Timothy 4:3 says “For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.” I DON’T WANT THAT TO BE ME!!!! Yes, these past few months have been hard. Extremely hard. I have reached out to God in ways I have never reached out before. I have needed Him as I have never needed Him before. And that has made me think about what is really important. I love the way you phrased it . . . “redeemed by His blood, owned, bought.” Jesus paid the price for my sin on that cross. And I try hard for my life to be worthy of that price even though, as I said, I fail Him many times. I love Him so . . . He is my Savior. Thank you for your comment. I was afraid I had offended everyone, as I can see my post has been read by many, but you’re the only comment. I hope I didn’t come across as judgmental, that was not my intent. I want to be lead by the Holy Spirit. I want to be convicted by the Holy Spirit. I don’t think many Christians even know what that means anymore. I’m so thankful for the wonderful Christians my blog has introduced me to. I am blessed by you. Have a wonderful day my friend. If we never meet on this earth, we will meet in heaven . . . of that I am confident. In His Name!!! Robbin

  3. Loved the post. I pray we always let the Holy Spirit lead us and, yes, convict us as He needs to. Hugs!

  4. I live my life as though Jesus is right beside me...watching what I watch, seeing what I see, hearing what I say, going where I surely helps keep me on the straight and narrow! You're going to have to try a LOT harder to upset me...we're in agreement on when Dave was alive, we enjoyed a glass of wine every now and again. He more than I because he used it to boost his pain meds.
    As to the Gray stuff...if the movie took place in a trailer park, it's be abuse. No, I didn't read the book nor see the movie...don't think Jesus would have been comfortable, therefore, neither would I be comfortable.
    Preach it, Sister, and pass the plate...I'll give an offering. You've done well!

  5. I came across your comment to Catherine on the In the Fields blog. Most of the people who commented did not agree with you concerning out election. I do agree, and that led me to your blog. Thank you for telling it like it is. I totally agree with you on everything in this post but one, tithing. Just as the priests of the old testament needed financial support, so do our preachers and staff in our churches today. I know our churches are not perfect places, but neither were the priests in the old testament. I believe we live under grace, but that the old testament is still relevant. I know Gentiles don't keep the Jewish feasts, but I think we would be blessed if we did. I've experienced the same things you have concerning Fifty Shades of Gray and The Shack. I also thought The Shack was thought provoking, I just pray that those that are not grounded in the Word who see it will not be confused. I haven't see it, but read the book and am not sure I'm going to see it. I would never read Fifty Shades of Gray, I think it is sad what I know about it and not glorifying to God. I'm apart of a Bible study, about 7 of us, and 3 of the women sleep with their boyfriends. Sometimes I teach the lesson and I am always trying to get across the message of what God's word says about such sin. The last lesson I taught, God led me to the passage in Matthew where Jesus was teaching in parables and His disciples asked Him why. He said, Seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, as it was also in Isaiah's time. That was my message to the group. I believe a lot of people in our country are like this also. Thank you for your blog, your comments on true Christianity. They are much needed in this temporary world of darkness. Paula