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Posts Tagged ‘Greatest Commandment’

Most people – and I’m talking about those who call themselves Christians – don’t seem to agree with Paul of Tarsus, the great evangelist without whom Christianity may never have seen the light of day, when he wrote, “I know that in me – that is, in my flesh – dwelleth no good thing” (Romans 7:18).

Most people nowadays seem to think that whatever comes out of their flesh automatically has to be good.

Be it because they’re Christians, Americans, or just their wonderful selves.

They automatically figure that whatever is “theirs,” their country, their religion, their family, age group, etc., has to be best for the simply reason that it’s “theirs.”

Totally oblivious to the fact that Jesus of Nazareth had quite a different attitude. When He was surrounded by a large crowd of people and His mother and brothers couldn’t get through to see Him, He didn’t say, “Excuse Me, folks, but I’ve got to go and say ‘Hi’ to My family.” He asked, “Who is My family? Who are My brothers and My mother?” (Matthew 12:48).

If people would care to read up on the recorded Words and opinions of the Man they claim to “follow,” they’d find out that He didn’t have a lot of positive things to say about His own nation’s leaders – religious or political – either.

In contrast to that, most Christians nowadays would blindly follow “their” President into WWIII and to the annihilation of every living thing, just because he happens to be the leader of the country they happen to have been born in, even if he were the Devil himself, as long as he keeps claiming, “Yeah, I’m a Christian.”

Only faintly, like an echo from a different world, rings Jesus’ admonition in most believers’ ears, “By their fruits ye shall know them.” All the “fruit” and evidence necessary to convince most folks these days is that their candidate holds a passport of their same nationality and that they have the right flag waving behind them. “Everyone else is guilty,” as far as they’re concerned and is thus deprived of even the most basic human rights.

I’m not writing this because I want to be nitpicking or a pain in anyone’s butt. But I believe the time will come when those that are sowing the wind right now will reap a whildwind of proportions that will make Katrina look cute by comparison, and I’m sure there will be a lot of folks then who’ll have the nerve to ask, “But why? What did we do to deserve this?”

Well, for one thing, you didn’t care very much about the truth.

That’s why you swallowed innumerable lies from your leaders & still said, “Yeah, that’s okay, after all, he’s ours.”

Even when those leaders sent your sons off to unjust wars to violate every commandment God ever gave you.

Just going to church was supposed to make up for it all. But I’m sorry, I can’t find that anywhere in the Bible. In fact, the only thing I find on that subject is that God doesn’t live in any type of temple, church or building, at all, not even if it’s “your” church (Acts 7:48,49)!

When it all comes down to it and you’ll have to stand before Him, what will count won’t be whether you were a Southern Baptist from Ohio or a Catholic from Naples, but only how you treated the “least of His brothers” (Matthew 25:40). Let’s all hope that we had what it took to discern who it is that He considers “His brothers” and that we then had the heart to be nice to the least and the lowest of them… Even if they weren’t a member of “our” club.

Some folks might argue, But it’s natural to stick to one’s own kind.” Sure, animals do it, too. But perhaps in this case Jesus gave us a sample of how to do things in a super-natural way, one different from the “norm“ or “natural.” (Didn’t Paul also say, “The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God”? – 1Cor.2:14)

Jesus was a Jew in His mid-thirties when He gave us a living example of extraordinary acceptance of non-Jews and other age-groups than His own. He healed and ministered to Romans and Samaritans, both generally rejected by Jews of His day, and He reprimanded His disciples for refusing children to come to Him, and He showed equal favour to the elderly. If we claim to be His disciples, why don’t we start walking in His footsteps for once?

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Oct.13 ‘07

In my treatize on “Bible Verses Most Christians Choose to Ignore” I’ve brought out some of the advantages and reasons that make me stick to my Family, even after 27 years of ups and downs, constant spiritual revolution and the accompanying controversy that’s bound to appear as a side affect…

But I think I left out one – probably the most important factor.

Nearly every church or congregation has a verse that they choose as their dogma, their highest commandment: for the 7th Day Adventists, it’s the commandment to keep the Sabbath. For the Pentecostals, it’s the gift of tongues. For most Catholics it’s probably just being catholic. For Baptists, as for Mormons, it’s the water. And then there are those red-white & blue flag waving patriots and warmongers who still seem to be clinging to the Old Testament dogma of “an eye for an eye…” (Not to mention those cunning politicians and leaders who pose as Christians, when in reality subscribing to the god of this world. You can recognize them by a very devout dedication to the 10 commandments: “Thou shalt not kill; thou shalt not covet; thou shalt not lie, etc., except that they always omit the word “not” from each phrase.)

Now, the highest, greatest, and yes, even only commandment the Family adheres to, above all, and which has been the gist of our message from the very beginning, is the very same one which Jesus Himself described as the fulfilment of all the laws and the prophets (Matthew 22:37-40), namely, to love God and our fellowman.

As our leader and shepherdess wrote, “The only thing that matters is love.”

In other words, our religion is love, and as one nature-born sucker for love, I can only say that that’s the only religion, in my opinion, ever worthy of subscribing to.

For most Christians, love is probably not enough. They need buildings, rituals, certain amounts of physically visible success as manifested in the abundance of the things they possess, but you can keep all that, if it makes you happy.

As for me, I’ll choose love any day above that. After all, if God IS love, as the Bible tells us clearly, then what higher thing could there ever be to strive for?

When love becomes your religion, it becomes more than that. Most Christians keep their religion tucked away well hidden from everybody else, in some neat little corner in their lives they reserve for God: that hour on Sunday mornings, or that brief devotional reading or prayer sometime during the day, which I don’t want to minimize or put down.

But when you truly seek to adhere to the first and great Commandment of Love, it becomes part of every facet of your life. And I think that’s precisely what Jesus was trying to teach us. He was precisely trying to convey to us the opposite of the “separation of religion and state” of our minds and affairs. He was saying, if it’s the Real Thing, you can’t keep it separate. After all, re-legio(n) is about putting things together, not taking them apart.

So, anything less than love is not enough (true) religion for me. Anything else is at best a cheap imitation.

How does your faith manifest itself in your life? How does your religion come across in your interaction with others every day? How much do you express your love for God and others on a daily basis? How real is what you believe in?

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