14 March, 2012

Let's Imagine

I want to ask the reader to put on your thinking caps with me for a minute and play "let's imagine."  Let's imagine that through a series of events I found myself alone jobless and homeless, and you in an act of compassion and kindness invited me to come stay in the guest room of your house. (Or on your couch... whatever) You did not ask anything of me, just opened your home for me.  So, let's pretend I've been there awhile, and I'm not living up to the expectations of your family... not picking up after myself, leaving lights on, not helping with chores. (Use your imagination) So, you decided to have a sit down with me and tell me that I'm welcome to stay, but you need to ask that I abide by the rules and responsibilities of your home so that things may continue to run smoothly. So, we go on a few more weeks, and while some things improve, you cannot help but notice that I simply am not doing or following some of the "rules of the house" that you outlined for me as expectations. Now suppose I said to you, "well, I agree with most of your rules... but I don't agree with this one and that one, so I'm not going to do them." What do you think would happen next? Something tells me that I would not be staying with you much longer. Right?

So, let's stop playing make believe now, and get back to reality. The example I gave you above while not "exact" is pretty close to how a lot of folks want to treat God and His Word. They want God when it fits what they want or what is comfortable. Just today I heard this one again; "I love God, but I disagree with things in the Bible." I get this response all the time. People will say, "I just cannot agree with what the Bible says about _____."  I hate to be the one to tell you people this... God is God, you're not, and He makes the rules. Truthfully, He is not interested in your opinion. He said it, that's it. Period. You either abide by His "rules" or you don't. The consequences of that choice may be eternal, so choose wisely. 

Now days, people want to make the Bible of a lessor importance, and they want to change it to fit the times... but the Word of God is eternal, and it does not change. You may scream intolerant all you want... it is the way it is. Period. House rules, don't you know.  If we can bend the Bible to fit whatever we want it to fit, then it no longer has any value or strength. I'm reminded of a conversation that I had with a woman some time ago where she kept challenging me with her beliefs, and to every challenge, I responded with not merely my opinion, but I told her, "the Bible says..."  After some time and numerous times of me refuting what she was saying by saying, "but the Bible says" and she sat and looked sternly at me for what seemed like forever, then smiled a kind of wry smile and said, somewhat hatefully, "I've figured out what your problem is. You need to quit thinking about what the Bible says for awhile and learn how to live like the rest of us." Wow! I could hardly believe my ears! This was a woman who professed to be a Christian and has been one for many years, but she was telling me that I relied too heavily on the Bible as my foundation for living. The sad thing is that there are many others out there who, while they may not express it with their words, their lives testify that they have the same philosophy of life as this woman. When we think we can pick and choose which parts of the Bible we want to agree with or live by, then we have made our own version of "Christianity", but it is not going to measure up to the standard that God had lain down for us. The truth is, when it comes to serving God, it is His way or our way, never a blending of the two. Want to live in His House? Then His rules apply. Period.

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