Christianity has encountered so much oppression right from the Jesus’ baptism to His ascension and will continue to agonize much more until His second coming. In the past centuries, even in the recent past decades, the persecution has always come from those outside the courts of the All Mighty but it’s becoming obvious that much of the oppression is coming from within.
This Christian religion has gone through much trouble, and it seems we have entered a new troublous era. (Honestly speaking Christianity is a religion, but most people reject calling it so. They prefer “way of life”. The Microsoft® Encarta® 2009. © 1993-2008 defines religion as a set of strongly-held beliefs, values, and attitudes that somebody lives by. For example, love, forgiveness, faith are strongly-held beliefs. Hospitality and decency are examples of values. Humility, gentleness are also examples attitudes. These beliefs, values and attitudes are the way of life of Christians.) Since this is not my agenda now I’d love to hit the nail on the head.
Modern Christianity has embraced so many things which aren’t consistent with the revelation of God unto man (the Bible). Recent Christianity suffers the peril of people dying and coming back to the earth with all sorts of “revelations”; they talk of meeting with Jesus for Him to walk them through heaven and hell. It’s plain as the nose on your face that most of these so-called revelations aren’t consistent with the revelation of the Bible. Concerning God sending dead people back on earth to warn mankind, “But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’” (Luke 16:31) This is the statement that Jesus used to end the Lazarus story, when the rich man requested a dead person sent to warn his five brothers. Abraham’s answer makes mention of Moses and prophets referring to the Sacred writings, which in our case is the Bible. In essence this part of the story is teaching us that; (1) Resurrection from the dead is possible, (2) There is no persuasion unto salvation and excellent Christian living greater than that which has been written in the Sacred Book – the Bible. Even when the real Lazarus was raised people wanted to kill him (Jn. 12:9, 10) which proves that people aren’t drawn to God by the greatest miracle – resurrection. It’s fascinating the kind of things these new “revelators” say after they descend upon the earth realm.
I do not disbelieve visions, dreams and trances but this new wave of religiosity is questionable. God can show heaven and hell unto people through these supernatural means not necessarily raising dead people. I have had couple of visions like that but I did not have to die before [Such as: Revivalists and the vast land, The Mystery of Iniquity, Age of Evil]. Rick Joyner didn’t have to die and be raised to tell his visions (that is, the Final Quest Trilogy). They came through visions and etc. Apostle Paul’s vision in 1 Corinthians 12:1-6 wasn’t a dead-to-life kind. He was either in an ecstasy or trance like Peter (Acts 10:9) or carried physically to heaven and back.
There is also in this new wave of Christianity a stern look at outward adornment (or dressing, facial cosmetics, artificial hair, hair styles, ornaments and etc.). In Africa the Deeper Life Church is well known for prescribing outfits for people (especially women), and has over the decades being very successful. Females are the ones who are mostly affected by these laws. Many ladies often ask me whether it’s right to wear trousers, put on make ups, and wear ear rings or artificial hair. A couple of others contemplate whether it’s Christian for a man to have a Rasta hair style. How did all these get into the Christian religion? God accepts people based on their hearts not their garments. “So rend your heart, and not your garments…” (Joel 2:13) The whole issue is about the heart. God’s judgement is based on the mind and the heart not dresses or Rasta. “The HEART IS DECEITFUL above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? I, THE LORD, SEARCH THE HEART, I TEST THE MIND, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.” (Jer. 17:9-10 emphasis added) God searches the heart and tests the mind before judging anyone. Man hasn’t reached the state of knowing people’s mind and heart. People can have evil minds and dirty hearts behind sanctimonious dressing. The heart matters most. Jesus Christ, the Son of God said concerning the heart that, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” (Matt. 5:8) Those who have pure hearts are qualified to see God, that is, they will spend eternity in heaven. Looking at things carefully garments (or dresses) do not really matter. The truth is loud that no true Christian lady would dress to entice men. If someone dresses to entice, then it’s immaturity – a babe who needs pruning by the Word of Christ. There are so many decent women trousers. A good Christian knows his or her limit in wearing ornaments and make ups. I don’t attempt to answer every question to satisfy anyone but rather bring light into darkness. I don’t encourage Christian men to go for Rasta hair styles but if the Rasta comes into Christ he is under no obligation to barber. Rend your heart, not your Rasta or ladies trousers or ear rings or… [Read Mantle of Purity]
Another issue is with images. God commands His children not to make graven images of things in heaven or persons in heaven including His Son Jesus or Mary (Exod. 20:4-6; Isa. 42:8; Jer. 51:52). Yet these images have even become the point of contact for some individuals. This has been a fundamental part of the Catholic Church but now modern Christianity has become involved too. With the idea of mantles people are confining God in handkerchiefs, anointing oils, prayer mats, holy water etc. Handkerchiefs or aprons or towels were taken out of Paul’s body to heal the sick but it’s nowhere in the Bible that Paul or the Apostles were sharing handkerchiefs for people. They preached with the demonstration of power! The Holy Ghost may move in that regard but we are forbidden to make it a norm. Writing these things earns enemies though but the truth sets free. However before I conclude may I say that it’s very erroneous to pray in the name of any man. Countless occasions Charismatics fall into this trap of praying in the name of mortals. In the shadow of “mantle” and “spiritual father” many commit this error. A statement like “By the mantle of my father (referring to spiritual father) I declare…” is ungodly. No spiritual father anointed God, it’s the other way around. We have not been commissioned by God to pray under any man’s mantle or anointing. Our stronghold is in the name of Jesus (Phil. 2:5-11). These are all part of the creating of images – men or objects; only Jesus should lead us to the Father (Jn. 14:6) with “Spirit and truth” worship (Jn. 4:24). [Read Worship – Made for Man]
Having said these things, I want to reiterate that religion is set of strongly-held beliefs, values, and attitudes that somebody lives by. Going by dead-to-life revelations, restrictions on outward adorning or images or mantle of fathers is a religion – a way of life. But it should be set apart as an independent religion rather than inculcating it into the Christian religion. The Christian religion does not rest on these fictitious and frivolous beliefs. Jesus didn’t command us to go into the world to die and rise with “revelations” and instructions from heaven. He says we should go and preach (Mk. 16:14-18). He said we should be pure in HEART not in dressing or in appearance. He said we should worship in Spirit and in Truth and ask everything from the Father in His name (Jn. 14:12-14), not in the mantle or anointing of a spiritual father. Nevertheless religion can be practiced by anyone at anytime and anywhere at all, but not in the Christian religion which has it foundation on Christ. Because the idea of adding these to the Christian religion makes the whole set up look “insane” and confusing, and another form of slavery, in stricter sense.
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