Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Departure From The Norm

"He wears his faith but as the fashion of his hat." ~ William Shakespeare

I never post blog entries about religious subjects on this blog. I have another blog devoted to matters of faith called "God's Way/My Way", which one can find, should one be interested, on my blogroll. I am no expert in apologetics and found myself way out of my league on that subject, so, I rarely, if ever post anything there.

Let me just say, on that subject, "I know Whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I've committed unto Him against that day". And that, as Mr Gump would say, is all I have to say about that.

I believe one's faith is a personal thing. By that I mean, discussing what one believes in a public forum such as a blog can be a risky thing and tends to stir up far more anger and resentment than political discourse.

There are so many widely diversified beliefs these days, that even true Christians often disagree with each other on some things. Thankfully, most of these disagreements are not things that divide us, but serve to strengthen our faith and compels us to go to the Word and divine for ourselves what God's truth is, which I believe is a good thing.

Not that I believe we shouldn't share our faith. I do. But we must be careful that we don't share the "wrong gospel".

 A man whose blog I used to frequent daily is a prime example. I used to like the man and he and I would often get into spirited discussions at both my place and his about both politics and religion. At first, it was fun! They started out as friendly disagreements but later, as he drifted farther and farther to the left, both politically and religiously, the discussions evolved into arguments which became more and more mean spirited until I could no longer bring myself to even visit his blog knowing that he would post some drivel that would absolutely infuriate me. I assume he felt the same about me, as he stopped visiting my blog altogether, too.

For some strange reason, I woke up thinking about him and his blog this morning. I don't know why. He hasn't crossed my mind in well over a year.

The last time I visited his blog, he was seriously contemplating enrolling in Seminary. In my opinion, his religious views are so far away from Biblical, I can't imagine a Seminary that would accept him as a student. There is, in my opinion, nothing Christian about his theology.

And yet, He insists he is a Christian. I can't say he isn't, but it surely seems he may have lost his way.

This is, I acknowledge, an oversimplification, but there is, I believe, but two things God demands from us as Christians:

1. Respect God, and,

2. Share God with others.

The thing that woke me from such a blissful peaceful sleep so abruptly this morning,  and motivated me to type my opinion out on today's blog, is the fact that this man would often call Jesus, "Jebus".

 Maybe I'm just being petty, but I find that disrespectful to Jesus Christ.

Now, this man would most likely defend this by saying Jesus doesn't care what you call Him as long as you worship Him and carry out His commands. Maybe he's right, but, I don't think the moniker either respects God or carries with it the message that we, as Christians, want to convey.

I think, calling Jesus ,"Jebus" would cause some non-believers to think the guy who's trying to witness to them isn't too sincere. Again, The man would defend that by saying what someone believes is his business and he doesn't have the right to impose his belief on others, so it really doesn't matter what the unbelievers think.

But then, that violates the second of God's demands, doesn't it?

How are we expected to share the Gospel if we don't bother to try to convince the unbeliever that he is following the wrong path? Telling an unbeliever "What's right for you may not be right for me and what's right for me may not be what's right for you, so go ahead and do what you want. It's none of my business", is, in my opinion, just plain foolish.

 Anyway, that's what I think. What do you think?


Marshall Art said...

This indeed leads to conflict. If I believe XYZ about God and the faith, and another believes something else, at least one of us is wrong. Neither wants to be, but both need to able and willing to defend what each believes in order to enlighten the other, as well as to confirm or readjust one's own beliefs. I have always been willing to be persuaded as much as I hope to persuade. Both are for my own benefit as in doing both I hope to be edified.

If I am convicted in what I believe, then anything that is contrary to that may be untrue (I say "may" be). Can I sit back and do nothing when someone else seems to believe that which isn't true, or do I have some level of duty to enlighten the other person? I feel the latter is the case to the best of my ability and the willingness of the other to listen and consider.

Also, where there is a public offering of a belief I feel is untrue, be it religious, political or whatever, I feel the same obligation to at least offer another point of view.

Fredd said...

When it comes to faith, arguing (or proselytizing, same thing) with someone of different faiths, or even within faiths with those of different 'synods', congregations or parishes accomplishes much the same as conservatives squabbling with liberals.

It is a fool's errand and accomplishes absolutely Nothing.

Changing hearts and minds with the closed minded is not possible.

And for the record: I, Fredd "The Pious" am proud to be closed minded. I will not listen to anything that comes out of a liberal mouth.

Much like a Christian will not listen to anything that comes out of a devil worshipper's mouth. Why bother?

Writing off that blogger 'who lost his way' was the right thing to do, Kid. To think of him again after such an extended period invites more of the same frustration you experienced 'back in the day.'

Dump him and think no more of him.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

In answer to your question, I think your are right on the money.

By the way, Fredd, discussions don't have to be arguments. And if you do your "proselytizing" right, you will get people to listen to you. They might not agree with you, but at least they will hear your message. I know from experience - I have a street ministry.

Jim said...

I always thought "Jebus!" was an expression of amazement, frustration, or disbelief, much like "Jimminy Christmas!" So did your friend actually refer to Christ as "Jebus" or was it simply an exclamation?

Mark said...

He referred to Christ as "Jebus", Jim, and therein lies the problem. And, for the record, He never adds "Christ" to the name Jesus either. He talks about Jesus and God, but he never places the Word "Christ" together with Jesus, as if Jesus was simply a man.

Just for the record, Yesterday, I took a quick visit to his Blog for the first time in probably 2 years, and he is halfway to earning his masters in Theology.

Marshall Art said...

I know the person to whom your refer. What are the odds that his "theology" will be different than it has always been once he completes his studies?