Christian Freedom is the realization of God’s grace! It is knowing that all the penalties and demands of the Law were nailed to the Cross. It is knowing that we are saved not by our own obedience to works of the Law, but by the blood of Jesus Christ! Christian Freedom is knowing that God cleanses your heart in Faith, through the Holy Spirit and not by ritual animal sacrifice, ritual purification and other works of the law!
Thus, there isn’t anything wrong with dressing up for Church, but there could be everything wrong with dressing up for church! Is that really you, or a show? Are you trying to display something/someone you aren’t? Is Sunday really different than Monday? Is who we are different one day to the next?
It is the serpent all over again, whispering that what the Word (John 1:1) says, is not quite what it means. I’ve even heard certain teachings that say the word ‘believe’ means that you do, “X, Y and Z” and that the ‘grace’ of Ephesians 2 only comes AFTER you do some things.. That the crucified savior, isn’t quite enough. The gospel still needs a single missing ingredient to be effective: Your effort.
I recall a woman telling me about taking her son to a football game for the first time who had to leave early in a panic attack, because she had been convinced for so long that if Jesus came back for his Bride, and you were at a ball game, you would be left behind! “For God gave us a spirit not of fear, but of power, and love and self control.”
Let’s digest this verse, found in Luke 14. This is important because I personally know families that have been torn to shreds over denominational stances, with players in the story using this verse as justification for why they can Biblically separate and tear their families apart with justification. The reality is, Jesus gave us a beautiful verse that has been abused, misused and made ugly.
No wonder that when Jesus spoke of the parable of the wedding feast in Luke 14 he said, “Go out into the hedges and the highways and compel them to come, that my house may be full!” I spent 15 years of my life in Christ believing and being taught that God wasn’t anywhere to be found except at 1145 Wallace Road. You couldn’t go to the beach, the mountains, the park, the bar, and find Christ, and most certainly, you couldn’t be a light for Him in those places – your work, His work, ALL the work, was in Church.
And finally – we know that early historical Apostolic and Church fathers still very much believed in moral purity, holy (righteous living as directed by the Spirit of God) and, what the conscious tells you, which we know was a valuable tool, otherwise there would have been no need to talk about having a seared (immune, dormant and ineffective) conscience. (1 Timothy 4:2)
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.
It has been an amazing journey learning the Scriptures and the people they were written for, by and because of. The history of the people and the times in which our books of the Bible were written is a fascinating topic and one that really helps to translate the writings […]