The Truth So Called Christians Will Not Accept Most people who call themselves Christians are in reality

not Christians at all no matter how dedicated they may be to their faith. The word of God is truth (Jesus speaking, John 17:17) and stands as the one and only standard that is acceptable to the God of heaven and of men. It, not man, sets the standard for who is a Christian. As there is a political correctness in our land there is likewise a religious correctness that one must adhere to unless he is willing to be branded a heretic, ostracized, ridiculed, and persecuted. Man has set his own standard as regards who is a Christian and who is not and it is religiously incorrect to dispute the accepted standard. A sort of political correctness in religion is nothing new. It existed in the days of Jesus and was something he had to fight against daily. As far as this world is concerned he finally lost the battle as it put him on the cross. It is pretty certain the same (persecution to the death) can be said of Paul and Peter. Paul said of that generation, "they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God." (Rom. 10:2-3 NKJV) The same could be said of our own generation. The zeal is there but not the truth. What did God do with the generation of which Paul spoke? They were destroyed in 70 A. D. when the Roman army took Jerusalem with massive loss of life. The Bible says that when Jesus drew near to Jerusalem, "He saw the city and wept over it, saying, 'If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you and close you in on every side, and level you, and your children within you, to the ground; and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not know the time of your visitation.'" (Luke 19:41-44 NKJV) So, the question arises, answered by the quote from Jesus above, does great zeal for God overcome a lack of knowledge of God's will, is zeal greater than truth? To ask is to answer. But, a point to be emphasized in addition to that is this. That generation was sure that they had God's will and were practicing it. In their mind there was absolutely no doubt about that. Those who disputed them found themselves in trouble. It is the same in our day and I am about to find myself in trouble with my own generation who read this piece. While there are many so called Christian religious denominations in America hardly a one has a membership of people who are in fact Christians, not according to God's word. A Christian is a person who is in Christ, not one who thinks he is. Here is what God has said about the matter from his own word.

Salvation is found in Christ. Paul said he endured "all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory." (2 Tim. 2:10 NKJV) A teacher might say to a Bible class "raise your hand if you believe salvation is found outside Christ." Would you raise your hand or would you accept what Paul said about it? Paul said salvation is "in Christ." Well, how does one enter Christ? Paul says elsewhere, "For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Gal. 3:26 NKJV) He does not say "as many of you who have believed in Christ have put on Christ" as many wish he had said. Do you take Paul at his word? Do you believe one is baptized into Christ or will you argue with an apostle? Paul says the same thing elsewhere, "Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?" (Rom. 6:3 NKJV) He did not have a slip of the tongue. That was what he taught whether writing to the Galatians or Romans or whomever. He taught the same things wherever he went or to whomever he wrote. In 1 Cor. 12:13 he says, "For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body … ". (NKJV) What body do you think Paul was talking about? The body of Christ, the church. Jesus is "head over all things to the church, which is His body." (Eph. 1:22-23 NKJV) Surely, no one thinks we are baptized into Christ's physical body. We are baptized into his spiritual body. It is the spirit that will be saved. God is spirit. "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God." (1 Cor. 15:50 NKJV) To be in Christ is to be in him in spirit. The church is a spiritual body. "Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body." (Eph. 5:23 NKJV) Whose body? His. How do you get into that body? Paul says we are baptized into it. Can you sneak into it? Can you believe into it? Will your zeal put you into it? Does God's word on the subject make any difference? One is either in the body of which Jesus is the Savior or he is outside it. Again, there is no being in between. You are either in or you are out. You cannot join his spiritual body. Paul did not say go out and join God's spiritual body. He said to be baptized into it. No baptism then no being in the body of Christ. Case closed. You cannot join Christ's body, you are baptized into it. What does this mean then as far as what is considered to be religiously correct in the denominational world? Does it not mean that what is considered to be religiously correct is in fact error? Yes, it does. Does it not mean that those teaching salvation by faith apart from baptism for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38), teaching that baptism is not essential to salvation, are actually teaching that it makes no difference whether one is in Christ or is outside him,

makes no difference whether one is a part of his body or not? Yes, it does. Denominational doctrine comforts those who have not been baptized just as long as they believe. What is wrong here, aside from a blatant contradiction of scripture and the establishment of a religion unknown to the Bible, is a total misunderstanding of what faith as taught in the New Testament is. Yes, most certainly the Bible teaches man is saved by faith in place after place but one must understand what biblical faith is and what it encompasses. Faith means you believe what the Bible says, for starters, about any and every subject of which it speaks. I have long said that the very thing those who teach that one is saved by faith alone need is "more faith". Faith in God's word, faith that he was able to say what he meant and mean what he said, faith that when Peter told the people at Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost that baptism was "for the remission of sins" (Acts 2:38) that he was not lying, faith that he had not lost his senses, faith that he was not deluded, faith that he said exactly what he meant to say, faith that he spoke by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, faith that when Ananias told Saul "arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins" (Acts 22:16 NKJV) he knew that Saul still had sins to be forgiven, that he was not cleansed of sin on the road to Damascus when Jesus appeared to him and faith was born. But, that is the very thing faith only advocates cannot accept which basically means almost the entire denominational world. There is no place in their pulpits for one who preaches what Peter or Ananias preached. Peter and Ananias would be kicked out of today's denominational churches. Now does all of this mean a man can just go out and be immersed without faith or repentance and be saved? Not at all. The Bible does not teach any such thing. Faith and repentance are prerequisites to acceptable baptism. Baptism is not just something one does blindly without forethought and understanding, without knowledge. Without faith and repentance baptism is meaningless. Let us take it a step further. One cannot be taught wrong, believe what he was taught, and then go through what a denomination calls baptism and then say he was baptized scripturally. He got wet but he was not baptized any more than a diver jumping off a diving board. One cannot accidentally obey God. Understanding, motivation, the heart are all involved in acceptable obedience. Paul said the Romans "obeyed from the heart" (Rom. 6:17 NKJV) which is the only way one can obey God. One cannot believe error, get wet, and be saved. Almost all denominational bodies with hardly an exception teach that baptism either symbolizes a salvation one already has obtained before his baptism or else it is necessary not to enter the universal church but to enter the local congregation or denominational church. The idea is that you are already saved but to become a member here we require baptism. So here you come to be baptized by one of these groups. If you accept their teaching you disbelieve the Bible lacking faith in what it has taught? Can you be saved in that kind of

state of unbelief? Can you be saved while rejecting the truth? What does baptism mean if you have rejected what the bible says about it? It means nothing other than you got wet and pleased men? If you say well I know what they are teaching but I do not believe it. My baptism will be for the remission of sins. It will be to get into Christ. Will that work? No! Why not? Because you are a liar and deceiver before men. They will not likely baptize you if you tell them your real beliefs so you will just hide it from them and whatever pronouncements they say during the baptismal ceremony you will act as though you accept them. You are going to play the role of the hypocrite while obeying the gospel. You cannot acceptably obey the gospel while acting the role of a deceiver and liar. Thus here are your choices with denominational baptism - you either accept their false teaching about it and reject what the Bible has said about it or else you play the hypocrite while getting wet. In either case you do wrong. Denominational baptism is of no value. Well, what do you do? Does it make a difference who baptizes you? No, not as long as you make it clear to them what you are doing and why and thus eliminate playing the hypocrite, deceiver, and liar. One need not be baptized by a preacher in a formal setting. There was not much of a formal setting when Philip baptized the eunuch in Acts 8. As far as I can recall there was not a single occasion in the book of Acts were one was baptized in a formal church service setting. Or, you can find a congregation of people who believe what the Bible teaches on the subject and gain their assistance in being baptized. Find a church of Christ in your area, one that still believes and practices the truth on the subject which is most but not all of them. Where does this leave us then, I should say leave me? It leaves me a hated man, one who is considered intolerant, deceived, a hater himself, a judge of men, one men loath and feel sorry for all at the same time. And, yet, I am the one who has said he believes what Paul the apostle taught. Those who are in opposition say it does not matter what Paul said, it was what he meant that counts, and they proceed to tell you the inventions of their own mind as to the real meaning of his words for the Holy Spirit was not able to speak in words that could be taken at face value. Yes, the religiously correct equivalent of political correctness lives today. It says all men, no matter what their practice, are saved today by faith alone or put another way without baptism. It makes absolutely no difference what group you are a member of as long as it is considered a Christian group and you claim to believe in Jesus. The man who is lost is the one who says it is not so. Yes, there is still today as there was way back when a zeal for God but it is not according to knowledge. It is, however, religiously correct according to our times.

Sadly, there are not a lot of Christians, not many at all, in what the world calls Christianity today - not unless one can be outside Christ and still be a Christian.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful