That Grace IS, as notated in the Amplified Bible version quoted above, God’s unbelievable, and unmerited, unearned drawing, that isn’t warranted by any outward holiness, works or sacrament we perform, or pompous self-righteousness (that as best is as filthy rags to God) that we can do.
The Jewelry thing (the abstinence doctrine) is a very implicit argument that requires the believers to ignore the entirety of the Bible, and even the words of Jesus, the culture of the people in question and the documented and archeological history of the audience to which this was written, and re-interprets the explicit meanings and statements therein to fit their implicit narrative.
That would make God very contradictory and, as Christians, we do not believe He contradicts himself. So – we realize our understanding must be wrong. So what did Jesus really mean? It may honestly require another study to fully dissect this passage completely, but the very basic sense, knowing Jesus was a Jew and the entirety of His audience were Jews, was that Jews who converted to Christianity would be hated by those who rejected Christ.
There are, however, some organizations who have white-labeled Worship and mass-produced it, created the methodology and then sold it as the recipe, like Grandma’s Sweet Apple Pie. Get one ingredient wrong or out of order and the pie is ruined. But worship isn’t like that and every worshipper should be free to worship in the Beauty of Holiness.
This is why the word ‘Cult’ stretches far outside the realm of religion. Many organizations and individuals outside of any religion can be cult leaders and many have existed in the past and present. The most extreme current example is the government of North Korea and it’s leader Kim Jong-Un.
Notice the intense difference? Love (focused on others) vs ‘their contrived doctrine and self-focus’. (look at my intelligence and ability, you should do what I say!) So my point is, Scripture makes it clear your love for others, which produces action and behaviors that benefit others, is how you serve Christ, and one another, and is in fact, being Christian.
One of my favorite moments of Scripture is arguably one of those that is in question whether or not it is in the original manuscripts. Regardless of its historical veracity, it’s principle is without a doubt indicative of the nature of Christ (and the nature I want to mimic) and […]
This morning included a weekly three-hour drive through a beautiful Oregon mountain pass and into God’s country – Central Oregon. As the driver (and alone) I don’t get to take in too much of the scenery – I have to drive safely after all. I do, however, get a lot […]
For those of us in this walk of Faith, being led by the Spirit of Christ is important. It’s a central point of our spiritual/Christian journey. In fact, it’s a central theme of the New Testament and the highlight of the Gospel message. In His humanity, Christ prayed, “Not my […]