Thursday, April 30, 2009

How to Spot a Hypocrite: TRUE Christianity vs. Fake Christianity

How to Spot a Hypocrite: True Christianity vs. Fake Christianity


There are people who claim to be Christians who haven't got a clue what a real Christianity is. These fake Christians can usually be put into three categories: Legalists, hypocrites, and liberal "Christians". However, sometimes a true Christian can be liberal, legalistic and/or hypocritical. So how do you tell if someone you know is a true Christian or a fake Christian. I was a fake Christian for 10 years before I found out what a TRUE Christian was. How can you tell if YOU are a real Christian or a fake Christian? Maybe this will help


Understanding Legalism


This is a ministry to help Legalists:

According to Recovering Legalists Ministries, the definition of Legalism is as follows: "Legalism is a part of human life and all pervasive in our culture. Most of us experienced or experience it in our families of origin. Churches often are guilty as well. Legalism, for the purpose of this site and ministry,  is trying to gain God's love and acceptance by: 1)"obedience"; 2) tithing; 3) prayer time; 4) "law keeping" or anything other than faith and the personal relationship with Jesus which will follow. Legalism is a current problem today and most of us have been touched by it. As stated in the Life Application Bible note on Colossians 2:23 "Legalism still attracts many people today. Following a long list of religious rules requires strong self-discipline and can make a person appear moral, but religious rules cannot change a person's heart. Only the Holy Spirit can do that……..By helping people move out of legalism and recover from its wounds, we are helping add joy and peace to their (our) lives. Again from the LAB, the note on Galatians 4:15 "Have you lost your joy? Paul sensed that the Galatians had lost the joy of their salvation because of legalism. Legalism can take away joy because (1) it makes people feel guilty rather than loved; (2) it produces self-hatred rather than humility; (3) it stresses performance over relationship; (4) it points out how far short we fall rather than how far we have come because of what Christ did for us. If you feel guilty and inadequate, check your focus. Are you living by faith in Christ or by trying to live up to the demands and expectations of others?" Note: The book of Galatians is devoted entirely to the subject of legalism. Romans and Hebrews and other books of the New Testament address it as well."

Understanding Hypocrisy

Webster's Dictionary defines hypocrisy as:  1: a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion 2: a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.

However, hypocrisy can also be an unconscious act of self deception. Remember that we often judge others by their actions, but judge ourselves by our intentions. We also allow ourselves to operate outside of our belief systems under certain conditions. Before judging someone as a hypocrite, you should find out if that person has a set of conditions that is causing the behavior; chances are there are areas in your own life that you would call hypocritical as well. The Holy Bible does NOT teach that you should not judge others – on the contrary, it teaches that you should be careful HOW you judge others.

Theses are some examples of REAL hypocrisy:

  * A preacher gives a sermon about infidelity while his wife is seated on the front row and his current mistress is seated two rows behind her.

  * An employee sings praise and worship songs while embezzling from the company.

  * A man who has a subscription to Playboy teaches his son that pornography is a sin.

However, it is a common fallacy to accuse people of hypocrisy who do not practice what they preach JUST because they fail to practice it. Such people may in fact be hypocrites, but the proof is not in their failure to practice; the failure may be in despite of their attempts to abide by what they preach. In order to accurately label someone a hypocrite who fails to practice what they preach, there would have to be proof that the preaching itself was not genuine. These examples appear to be hypocritical, but they are NOT:

* A man who was a 20 year smoker, but who has quit for health reasons, teaches his children that smoking is bad for them.

* A woman who wants to quit smoking, but who does not have the will power to quit, teaches her children that smoking is bad for them, AND explains that if she could quit, she would quit.

* Parents teach their children that they should wait until marriage until they loose their virginity; however, one parent lost his virginity at 14 because he was taught the classid double standard that boys who get a lot are studs and that and the other parent lost hers at 16 because she was in love and was trying to save a relationship. Both parents have admitted their shortcomings in remaining sexually pure and are trying to teach their kids to learn from their mistakes.

* A Muslim man who is married to four women converts to Christianity. He later becomes a pastor of a church. His four wives and eight kids are seated on the front row as he teaches the Christian principle that marriage should be between one man and one woman.

As you can see, circumstance and intent are determining factors in properly judging hypocrisy. If you are too quick to judge others as being hypocrites you may very well be guilty of committing hypocrisy by doing so.

Hypocrisy in a religious context usually involves the conscious intent to preach something different than what is practiced. Hypocrisy is NOT the unintentional failure to practice what is preached. Even good Christians commit sin- that is called being human. However, having a sin nature and being confronted by temptation is no excuse to sin. Here is a link to better understand the difference between hypocrisy and moral failure.

Understanding Liberal Christianity

The word liberal in liberal Christianity mans an interpretation scripture without any preconceived notion of its inerrancy correctness of Church teachings. Even if a liberal Christian holds certain beliefs in common with traditional, orthodox, or conservative Christians, Liberal Christianity has no unified set of beliefs. Liberal Christians do not believe that the Bible is a collection of factual statements. Instead they believe that the documents reflect the human authors' beliefs and feelings about God at the time of its writing—within the historic and cultural context. Liberal Christianity believes that the Bible is a collection of narratives that explain (often through analogy) the essence and significance of the Christian understanding. Most Liberal Christians do not believe in a literal Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve, the Original Sin, the Fall of Man, The historical accuracy of the bible, or that Jesus Christ is the only way to Heaven. Most liberal Christians (like liberals in many religions) believe that the various religions of the world are all valid means of expressing the same truth. Most of them do not believe in a literal Hell and if they did, would not believe that a loving God would send anyone there.  Liberal Christians can believe in evolution, abortion, gay marriage, homosexual clergy, premarital sex, divorce, and can be open to astrology, mysticism, the New Age movement, gambling, and pornography. Liberal Christians do not believe in offending other people and consider themselves to be very tolerant; however, they are usually intolerant of conservative Christians. 

The word Christian in Liberal Christian can be more of a religious brand preference than an actual practice of beliefs. This makes liberal Christianity related to cultural "christianity"  Here is a link to what liberal Protestants believe:

Understanding Cultural Christianity

Cultural "christians" are people who have been brought up in a Western or Christian culture and may refer to themselves as being Christian because of that heritage or culture. They think that they are Christians by association not by actively practicing the Christianity that is taught in the bible. Non-Christians may refer to them as Christians, but practicing Christians do not since they do not have Christian beliefs or practices.  Here is a link to cultural "christianity":

Understanding TRUE Christianity

True Christianity is also called biblical Christianity because its beliefs come from the bible. There are many different denominations of biblical Christianity. The following description of true Christianity should fall within the core belief system of Protestant, Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox Christian sects. Different sects and different denominations within those sects will add to these beliefs in building the ideological structure of their particular denomination, but these beliefs should be found in all True Christians. The two core beliefs of true Christianity are:

1.      True Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God (most believe He is also God who came in the flesh.) They believe Jesus' death of the cross was a literal event that paid for their sins IN FULL. (This is where Legalists miss out on being True Christians; they continue to try paying for their own sins by good works).


2.      True Christians make Jesus the boss of their lives. (This is where Liberal and Cultural Christians miss out on True Christianity – they have NOT submitted to God's authority; they are still the boss of their own lives.) As a result of their submission to God's authority, they do perform good works. However, to a True Christian, good works are not an attempt to gain salvation, good works are a RESULT of being saved.

Some True Christians are closed minded and some are open minded. Some are Young Earth Creationists and others are Old Earth Creationists. Some believe in a form of theistic evolution and some believe in various creation events. However, what they all hold in common is a factual interpretation of the bible as fact. True Christianity is NOT based on blind-faith, mythology, or the charismatic personality of  authoritative leaders in the church; it is based on the belief that the Holy Bible is the Word of God. The thousands of atheists and agnostics, who have converted to biblical Christianity after trying to debunk the bible, understand the factual basis of their faith.

True Christianity is one religion where no one has to worry about what some archeologist will dig up, what some geneticist will discover, or what cosmologists may witness through a telescope. When we look into science, we learn about God through what God made.

Romans 1: "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse."

I will try to keep my commentary to a minimum as I share what the bible itself has to say about what makes a TRUE Christian, and what validates that Christianity as being real. This bible study will contain a lot scriptural readings. After making it through this thread, you will know more about being a Christian than a lot of Christians do and will be able to give some of them an education.

The Word of God

2 Timothy 3: 15-16 "and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;"

Romans 1:16-28" For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is God's power for the salvation of everyone who believes, of the Jew first and of the Greek as well."

Hebrews 4:12, "For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any double-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul and spirit, joints and marrow, as it judges the thoughts and purposes of the heart."

God said in Isaiah 55:11 "So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it."

Sin separates us from God

Isaiah 59:2 "But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, And your sins have hidden His face from you so that He does not hear."

Romans 3:23 "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,"

Numbers 15:28 - 29 "The priest shall make atonement before the LORD for the person who goes astray when he sins unintentionally, making atonement for him that he may be forgiven.29 'You shall have one law for him who does anything unintentionally, for him who is native among the sons of Israel and for the alien who sojourns among them."

James 2:10 "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is become guilty of all."

Matthew 5:28 "but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

Psalm 44:21, "Would not God find this out? For He knows the secrets of the heart."

God has two natures: Justice and Mercy

Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

The Justice of God is motivated by His holiness. Every crime has a punishment, and He is the judge. He made a perfect creation and His standards for it are perfection. The entrance of sin caused all of creation to fall. Physical death is the result of sin, spiritual or eternal death is the payment for sin. However, God has perfect love and that love motivates His mercy. He gave us free will, and the first sin was motivated by deception - not outright rebellion. Therefore, his love for us set into motion a plan to redeem mankind. The alternative would have been to erase us and to start over, but that would have set into motion a never ending cycle of "pushing the reset button." His love for us motivated Him to become a man who lived among us so that He could sacrifice Himself as the payment for our sins. He gave humanity a promise to come to the world through His own chosen people, the Jews. God's place in Heaven is outside our timeline in the time/space continuum, so when He came here as a man, He still existed on the eternal plane in Heaven. This enabled Him to occupy the positions of God the Father, and the Son of God at the same time. Because He was born into the world through Mary, who was a descendant of David (as was Joseph) He carried the blood line of David, and was the adopted son of Joseph. He was not only the blood kin of Jewish royalty but also had the birthright of an adopted son; according to Jewish law, an adopted son cannot be abandoned or disowned. He was fully able to refer to himself as God the Father, God the Son, The Son of David, and The Son of Man.

I have another thread that explains the Holy Trinity. If unsure what that means, then read this before going any farther: If you have a basic understanding, then please continue.

John 1: 1-5 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."

John 14:7 "If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him."

God's Mercy
Luke 15:30-32 "But this son of yours spent your money on prostitutes, and when he came back, you killed the fattened calf for him!' "His father said to him, 'My child, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and rejoice, because this brother of yours was dead [to me] and has come back to life. He was lost and has been found.'"

Luke 15:7 "I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance."

Numbers 14:18 "The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in loving kindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.'

The last part of that verse talks about the consequences of sin that remain even after the penalty of sin is forgiven. Example: We may drive home drunk from a football game, have an accident, kill our best friend and paralyze our girlfriend. Later we may realize what we have done was wrong and ask forgiveness. We will be forgiven by God, but the effects of the death of the one and the immobilization of the other can last four generations. We usually have to face the consequences of our actions. If a boy gets a girl pregnant, he can tell God he is sorry and get forgiveness, but he is still the father of a child that will be born nine months later.

God's Justice
When have made our final decision to choose ourselves as the god of our own life (rebellion) then He allows His righteous anger to rise against us. If all of us had rebelled, then He would have erased us in the Great Flood. However, Noah was not in rebellion to Him, so He saved Noah and His family because of his mercy, but gave Justice to the rest of the World.

Genesis 6 5-9 "Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. The LORD said, "I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them." But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD.
These are the records of the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his time; Noah walked with God."

God has another way of dealing with sin; when we rebel against Him, He allows us to be delivered into the hands of our own sin. With His presence and influence removed, we then hate Him, blame Him for our problems, and often times hurt or hate others as an expression of our pain. We are often blinded by our sin, and can justify it so well within us that we fail to see what harm we are doing:

Isaiah 5:20 "Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!"

Nahum 1: 3 "The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, And the LORD will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. In whirlwind and storm is His way, And clouds are the dust beneath His feet."

Psalm 111: 10 "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. Good sense is shown by everyone who follows [God's guiding principles]. His praise continues forever."

Roman's 12:19 "Do not take revenge, dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath. For it is written, "Vengeance belongs to me. I will pay them back, declares the Lord.""

Nahum 1:2" A jealous and avenging God is the LORD; The LORD is avenging and wrathful. The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies."

Revelations 14:19 ""So the angel swung his sickle to the earth and gathered the clusters from the vine of the earth, and threw them into the great wine press of the wrath of God."

Ephesians 5:6 "Do not be turned from the right way by foolish words; for because of these things the punishment of God comes on those who do not put themselves under Him."

~ Among other things, this verse refers to liberal interpretations of the Word of God that change the meaning from the literal way in which it was written. The orthodox Jews of Jesus' day interpreted the scriptures in a literal context. They did not question the existence of Adam and Eve as real people and neither did Jesus. The Jews of that day who converted to Christianity referred to Jesus as the "last Adam" who came to restore what the first Adam had lost.

Original Sin
The Original Sin at the fall of man in the Garden of Eden has often been blamed on Eve (who was deceived by Satan) however, God blamed Adam. The reason is because Adam had an opportunity to say no to Eve's temptation and to ask God to forgive her. His failure was in not bridging the gap made by her sin. Instead, he not only ate of the fruit (his first sin) but then blamed her for his actions (his second sin). The shifting of blame is what made God angry… When Jesus was on the cross paying for all of the sins committed by mankind (past present and future) He stood in Adam's place and did for us, what Adam was supposed to do for Eve:

Luke 23:24 "Then Jesus said, "Father, forgive them. They don't know what they're doing." Meanwhile, the soldiers divided his clothes among themselves by throwing dice."

Romans 5:15 "But God's free gift is not like Adam's offense. For if many people died as the result of one man's offense, how much more have God's grace and the free gift given through the kindness of one man, Jesus the Messiah, been showered on many people!"

God's Love and Sin's payment:

1 John 4:10 "This is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the payment for our sins."

John 1:16-17 "We have all received one gracious gift after another from his abundance, because while the Law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus the Messiah."

John 3:17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him."
Mark 8:31 "And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again."
Luke 23: 33–43 "When they came to the place called The Skull, there they crucified Him and the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left. But Jesus was saying, "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." And they cast lots, dividing up His garments among themselves. And the people stood by, looking on. And even the rulers were sneering at Him, saying, "He saved others; let Him save Himself if this is the Christ of God, His Chosen One." The soldiers also mocked Him, coming up to Him, offering Him sour wine, and saying, "If You are the King of the Jews, save Yourself!" Now there was also an inscription above Him, "THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS."
One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, "Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!" But the other answered, and rebuking him said, "Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? "And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong." And he was saying, "Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!" And He said to him, "Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise."

The second criminal on the cross was receiving the death penalty for crimes he had committed. He confessed those sins, recognized Jesus for who He is and asked for His salvation. Jesus then granted it to Him according to the criminal's faith. His salvation was then confirmed by Jesus Himself.

1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

Romans 5:8 "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
2 Corinthians 5:21 "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."
Isaiah 53:5-6 "But He was pierced through for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him."
1 John 2:2 "He is the payment for our sins, and not only for our sins, but also for the sins of the whole world."

Matthew 28:2-7 "And behold, a severe earthquake had occurred, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled away the stone and sat upon it. And his appearance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. The guards shook for fear of him and became like dead men. The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified. "He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. "Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you into Galilee, there you will see Him; behold, I have told you."

1 Corinthians 15: 3-8 "For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. After that He appeared to more than five hundred brethren at one time, most of whom remain until now, but some have fallen asleep; then He appeared to James, then to all the apostles; and last of all, as to one untimely born, He appeared to me also."

Acts 1:3 "After his death Jesus showed the apostles a lot of convincing evidence that he was alive. For 40 days he appeared to them and talked with them about the kingdom of God."
Acts 1: 6-8 " So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, "Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth." And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight."
Acts 17: 1-4 "Now when they had traveled through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. And according to Paul's custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and giving evidence that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you is the Christ." And some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, along with a large number of the God-fearing Greeks and a number of the leading women."

How about just being a good moral person; isn't "good", good enough?

Isaiah 64:6 "We've all become unclean, and all our righteous acts are like permanently stained rags. All of us shrivel like leaves, and our sins carry us away like the wind."

Mark 2:17 "When Jesus heard that, he said to them, "Healthy people don't need a physician, but sick ones do. I did not come to call righteous people, but sinners."

Ephesians 2: 8-9 "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast."

Galatians 2:21 "I do not misapply God's grace, for if righteousness comes about by doing what the law requires, then the Messiah died for nothing."

Romans 11:6 "But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace."

Galations 2:16 "nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified."

Okay, if I can't go to Heaven by being good, then how do I get there?

John 3:3 "Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."

2 Corinthians 5:17 "Whoever is a believer in Christ is a new creation. The old way of living has disappeared. A new way of living has come into existence."

False Christians
There are many who call themselves Christians and who believe that they are Christians, but are not. People who "pray the salvation prayer" then continue living as though nothing happened, prove that their conversion was NOT real. You can't just get a free ride to Heaven by believing Jesus is the Son of God. Even the Devil know who He is. The key factor in getting saved is submitting yourself to His Lordship. That means firing yourself as the boss of your own life. People tend to try to earn their salvation through good works because it allows one's self to remain in charge and to take pride in religious service to God. Just going to church, being good, being religious, praying and, giving charity is not being a true Christian:

2 John 1:9 "Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son."

Matthew 7:18-23 "A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. "Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. "So then, you will know them by their fruits. "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'

When Jesus uses the word lawlessness in conjunction with the people who tried to earn their way into Heaven, they will be reminded that being guilty of any sin equals being guilty of all sin. We cannot earn salvation; if we could, Jesus would not have needed to die on the cross.

How about other religions? Aren't all religions just different ways of expressing the same truth?

John 14:6 "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.""

John 1:12 "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name,"

Why is the God of the bible being so intolerant of other religions?

John 17:3 ""This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent."

1 John 5:20 "And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life."

Jeremiah 10:10 "But the LORD is the only God. He is the living God and eternal king. The earth trembles when he is angry. The nations can't endure his fury."
If the truth is that the only living God made the universe we live in and the only way to get to Heaven is by faith in that one true God, then how can it be hate speech or intolerance to share the truth you know? If I was on a sinking ship that had launched ten life boats, and you were in the only lifeboat that didn't leak, I would want you try to keep me from getting on one that would sink. I would not claim you were intolerant of other boats – I'd give you a big hug for saving my life!

Not Everyone Likes the Truth

Jesus speaking to His disciples said in John 15:18 "If the world hates you, you should realize that it hated me before you."

John 15:20 "Remember what I told you: 'A servant is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.

Matthew 24:9 "Then they will hand you over to suffer and will kill you, and you will be hated by all the nations because of my name."

Summary of a True Christian

A True Christian is someone who believes Jesus is the Messiah (the Son of God) who dies on the cross to pay for sins that could not otherwise be paid for. That person has admitted their sins to God and accepted Jesus' payment for their sins. AND that person has submitted to the Lordship (or ownership) of themselves to God through Jesus Christ. This is usually done in some sort of prayer. The evidence that their conversion experience is real is in the change that occurs within them. They have love for people and serve others, and do good works. They worship God through Jesus with sincerity, not as a religious act to win favor with God, but they are to do good works:

Ephesians 2"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them."

God is a Christian's adopted Heavenly Father

James 1:18 "In accordance with his will he made us his children by the word of truth, so that we might become the most important of his creatures."

Romans 8:15 "For you have not received a spirit of slavery that leads you into fear again. Instead, you have received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba! Father!""

Ephesians 5:1 "Imitate God, since you are the children he loves."

We do not loose our Christianity by committing a sin after being saved. We have been adopted by God, and He is our father. According to Jewish law, a father cannot disown an adopted son. But he will discipline us as His children if we disobey, but He also understands our growth may be slow, so He treats us like we are His children:

1 Peter 2:1-2 "Therefore, rid yourselves of every kind of evil and deception, hypocrisy, jealousy, and every kind of slander. Like newborn babies, thirst for the pure milk of the word so that by it you may grow in your salvation."

Hebrews 13:4-6 "Let marriage be kept honorable in every way, and the marriage bed undefiled. For God will judge those who commit sexual sins, especially those who commit adultery. Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be content with what you have, for God has said, "I will never leave you or abandon you." Hence we can confidently say, "The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can anyone do to me?"

I think I can better make my point with something I wrote called the Parable of the Three Mothers

1. A Mother has a kid who does drugs, and she knows it. She does nothing about it because she does not want her relationship with him to suffer. She blinds her self to it and lives in denial.

2. A Mother has a kid who does drugs, and she knows it. She tells the kid that she hates drugs and for him to stop. The kid continues using them because he is addicted. The mother disowns him and throws him out of the house and has nothing more to do with him.

3. A Mother has a kid who does drugs, and she knows it. She tells the kid that she hates drugs and for him to stop. The kid continues using them because he is addicted. The mother confiscates his drugs. The steals them back from her. She pleads with him to go to rehab. He refuses. She calls the police and has him arrested; the police mandate his time in rehab. She visits him while he is there. When he is recovered, she brings him back home and celebrates his freedom from it. She then keeps him accountable to the drug free life by stating very clearly that if he returns to a life of drugs, she will return him to the police.

Love based on performance is a poor parenting skill. So is passive parenting. When I said that God does not love us less or accept us less, I was not suggesting that his love is cheap and passive. The parent, who does not reprimand or discipline a child, does not show love, but weakness. However, a parent that does not balance justice with mercy is hated by her children. Mother three is the greater. Her love and acceptance of her child is unconditional. However, she is no enabler of his sins, nor is she a hater of her son because he is disobedient and not easy to love. It is a biblical principle to "hate the sin, but love the sinner."

What a New Christian Should Do
Colossians 3: 1-17 "Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry. For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience, and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them. But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him— a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.
So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. "

Romans 7 4-25 "Therefore, my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death. But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.
What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? May it never be! On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, "YOU SHALL NOT COVET." But sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, produced in me coveting of every kind; for apart from the Law sin is dead. I was once alive apart from the Law; but when the commandment came, sin became alive and I died; and this commandment, which was to result in life, proved to result in death for me; for sin, taking an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. So then, the Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.
Therefore did that which is good become a cause of death for me? May it never be! Rather it was sin, in order that it might be shown to be sin by effecting my death through that which is good, so that through the commandment sin would become utterly sinful. For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.

My hope and prayer is that anyone who reads this and finds this post to be offensive in any way, would take some time, pray about it and then read it carefully. You just may hear God's voice calling you home to Him.

If that is you right now, then go to Him in prayer. Admit your sins, accept His payment for them. Say goodbye to self worship and make Him your boss. God loves you enough that He died for you. And Now that He has risen from the dead he has a place waiting for you in Heaven and has a plan for your life on this earth. What are you waiting on?

2 Corinthians 6:2 "For he says, "At the right time I heard you, and on a day of salvation I helped you." Listen, now is really the "right time"! Now is the "day of salvation!"

You can pray this prayer right now

"God, I want to go to Heaven when I die; I want to be with you. I accept the payment that Jesus made on the cross for me, and I thank you that He paid for my sins so that I do not have to. I am a sinner, and I ask forgiveness for those sins. I submit myself to your authority, God. I ask you, Jesus to come into my life and be my Lord and Savior. Please guard my heart against deception and draw me closer to you. Teach me how to know Your will and please begin shaping my life into what You want it to be. Not my will, but Your will be done in my life. I belong to you now, God. In Jesus name, Amen."

If you prayed that prayer, and you meant it, then you have just become a TRUE Christian! Go tell someone the good news!

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