Thursday, July 14, 2016

THE FALSE CHRISTS AMONG US & FINDING PEACE

As we see continued fall-out from the Ferguson, MO, fiasco, supposedly about race, cops, murders, injustice, equality, hatred, and oh-so-many-other-things, we all are feeling the incredulous atmosphere that continues to build up around us and the hard-to-explain emotions and thoughts that accompany that.  (I say "supposedly" because I believe there is something more going on here than meets the eye.)

The latest part of the fall-out has been the killing of two black men by police officers, one in Louisiana and one in Minnesota, and now the horrific massacre of the five Dallas police officers. I can't be the only one that is finding it hard to express something I'm feeling in relation to all this. Something that is not easily identified. Something that I can't quite put my finger on. Do you feel it too? 

I can't tell you how many times I've gone to post something on Facebook about this, to try to reach out to others and just "connect" in some way, you know?  And although I've made feeble attempts, I feel very much that what I'm truly feeling still hasn't found voice. It still hasn't been fully identified. So I have continued to struggle with wanting to say something, but not able to say it in just the right way. 

Until today.

Lately, I have felt an increased desire to put God first in my life. More than usual, I mean. I am convinced that it only by drawing closer to Him that this world has any hope - that we, as individuals, have any hope - for a better world, a better life. So I have chosen to start my days off with a devotional. Nothing fancy, or pre-planned. 

Well, today's devotional included the following: 



This really struck me. I realized, perhaps for the first time really, that "false Christs" are not just people, but theologies. How many theologies are out there right now? And so many people seem incapable today of being tolerant of those who think or feel differently than they do - all their screaming for tolerance aside. Today, it seems, if you don't see the world through the same paradigm as a group of people, be they blacks, LGBTs, Heterosexuals, Christians, Muslims, etc., then you must be killed. KILLED.  Not just "agree to disagree" and go your own ways. No. KILLED. Incredible!

We are surrounded by false Christs today. So where do we turn? We are also surrounded by books, politicians, doctors, theorists, theologians, educations, and so many others who claim to have the answers. It reminds me of 2 Timothy chapter 3 verse 7: "Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." A sign of the end-times. Yes. That is what our society has come to. 

So where can we turn for peace and truth? How do we know what is true? There is only one source of truth that I know of without a doubt. Only source of truth. And that is Jesus Christ. 

You see I have come to learn and understand that our politics are eternally intertwined with religion. They are two sides of the same coin, and they are inseparable. The U.S. Constitution is the Gospel of Jesus Christ for civil governance. And the only antidote to the ills of our republic today is the Gospel of Christ. If and when we follow Him to the very best and honest of our power, He blesses us and we remain free.  That is a fact that has been proven time and time again over the History of the world. 

Let's pretend for a second that the reader does not believe in God. Then my reply would be: What have you against trying something that will do zero harm and that has the potential to increase your peace, safety, and joy? What harm is there in restraining from telling any lie? What harm is there in not committing adultery? Or in not taking the Lord's name in vain? What harm is there in attending church once a week and listening carefully to learn and see what you can do that week that will bring you joy? There is zero harm. In fact, by doing those things, and putting God to the test, you can only do one thing: Bring blessings upon yourself - even if you're an atheist.  So why not try it? Go ahead! Try it!

Yes, Christ is the answer to the ills of the world. He always has been. We are the ones that lost sight of that a long time ago. He is our only true source for true and lasting peace and joy. Key words being "true" and "lasting". 

I bear my own testimony of this truth: Jesus Christ is where we can turn for true and lasting peace - as well as for the answers of life. 

We are all brothers and sisters. Black skin is not important. White skin is not important. Righteous or sinner is not important. What is important is that we love others. That doesn't mean we don't have boundaries. That doesn't mean we enable someone even though it hurts them. It doesn't mean we allow others to abuse us. It means, even if we have to put up boundaries, even if we have to put distance between us and another person, even if we can't be friends or family any more with someone, we can still love them from where we are. We can still pray for them. We can still hold no grudges. We can still forgive. We can still do our best to help those around us. Turn to Him if you want this world to be a safe and happy place. TURN TO HIM.