Wednesday, October 22, 2008

What kind of Christian are you?

I got this idea after reading a Post written by an internet friend(Jason) at Societyvs.wordpress.com, he wrote the post for de-conversion.com. From what I have gathered by reading the blogs of Jason I would consider him a good man. He has many admiral qualities and is respectful and polite. In my opinion he exemplifies the goodness that Christianity can offer. Now dont get me wrong, there is much in that religion that causes strife and discord, but as I read the bulk of his words I would make the claim that he uses it for the betterment of his life and others. As I have been reading a lot on Christianity lately, I have come to the conclusion there is no real definitive description for what a Christian is. It seems that there are countless interpretations and viewpoints on what it means to be Christian.


Catholic, presbyterian, pentecostal, baptist, Universalist, liberal, conservative, evangelical.........and the list goes on. It seems everyone decides to cherry pick scripture and work their beliefs around that. Sure there may be some points that most agree on, but really its a hodge podge, as Im sure it is with all religions. So I have decided to be Christian, and in the following few paragraphs I will show you what I am going to base my beliefs on. They will all be Bible Based though. Here goes.

1. 1 John 4:16 (English Standard Version)

16So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

I think that this is as good a starting point as any, if there is a Creator Im sure it would be Loving. Afterall Im a parent and I love my kids too.

2. John 12:32 (English Standard Version)

32And I,when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself."

You gotta love this one. From the mouth of Jesus. Hes going to take care of Everybody. I mean damn, we dont have to worry about faith vs works, sprinkled or dunked, Evangelical vs Catholic. Its like WOW, were all ok.

3. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 (English Standard Version)

21but test everything; hold fast what is good.

Use that brain.How can we not expect things to make sense, I mean like, really, who here isnt going to research something after thinking, "man that just doesnt make sense." It sure helps when you read all those Nasty scriptures and realize a Loving creator would never do that kind of shit. This scripture has really helped me see how many people actually try to use the Bible for there own purposes( go figure).

4. Galatians 6:7-10

Galatians 6:7-10 (English Standard Version)

7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.


Damn, you reap what you sow. Its like who/whatever made this Universe had a format. If you do certain behaviours or actions, they will come back to you. Now thats just freaking genius! I believe its the old adage "what goes around, comes around idea". I am sure we can all relate to that one, especially if you have Kids.

5. Matthew 7:1-5

Judging Others 1"Judge not, that you be not judged. 2 For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. 3Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when there is the log in your own eye? 5You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.

Firstly this one is for all you "nice" Christians who are going to jump all over me for Cherry Picking, I hope none of you live in glass houses. On a second note, couldnt we all live by this one. And if we did, do we not "know" the world would be much much better.

I wrote this to show how if I wanted, I could be Christian too. I would be no different than anyone else who reads the bible and trys to inform his/her life by it. The "FACT" is you cant live the bible 100% literally, anyone who believes they can is at best delusional, at worst Homicidal.

Im not sure if most people know this, but the term Christian was first used as a slur. I see how that has come full circle as many, many people who have had terrible experiences with the faith now see it the same. For all the people hurt by the assholes of the religion, just remember, they are not real Christians, LOL Oops.

14 comments:

Jim Jordan said...

Good selection of Scriptures, JT.

1 John 4:16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

Love comes from free will and first came from God's free will (We love because He first loved us). But love has a counterpart: sin, which is not God's love but the deceptive love of self. The sinner raises himself in his own mind and lowers God (aka pride, the first deadly sin). Note that Jesus' both commands attack this self-love (Love God first, Love your neighbor).

I would suggest that living and growing in these truths is more powerful than any other attempt. Because the person who says "I can live a good life, too" is already giving in to the sin of pride. Instead we must understand that only God is good and that we must abide in Him.

Tit for Tat said...

JJ

Remember though, our first experience of a Creator(god) is through ourselves. Without Love of self you cannot see Love anywhere else. Having value(love) for oneself is not Pride, it is healthy. Now believing you are better than others is where the sin of Pride comes in.

Luke said...

awesomes stuff JT! you're using what us theologians call the "canon within the canon" meaning "you can do EVERYTHING the bible says, so which ones you cherry-pick define your faith".

prefectly acceptable in my circle anyway. gotta name the starting points.

i should go through and name my canon within the canon, but i'll just answer (for simplicity's sake) "what kind of Christian are you?" with the answer "a fundamentalist Christian." I fundamentally believe that if you're living a life full of love of God, neighbor, and self, you're golden. the rest is commentary.

RAWK!

societyvs said...

Also 'God is Love' meant a lot.

societyvs said...

“Sure there may be some points that most agree on, but really its a hodge podge, as I’m sure it is with all religions. So I have decided to be Christian, and in the following few paragraphs…” (John)

True – there is no real definition of a Christian – I use a basic one that has connection with living according to Jesus’ teachings (ie: being responsible, loving, thoughtful, merciful, etc).

I think the fine line in the sand between serving God and serving one’s own desires is the simple idea ‘treat others the way you want to be treated’ (thoughtfulness and hope). Once we walk away from this teaching – we are moving away from acknowledging God. Move towards it – we move towards knowing God. The idea is – the better we treat people the more we honor God.

For me, faith puts all people on the same level – as equals and nothing less. It actually doesn’t matter if someone calls us a Christian or not – as long as we live the ideas within the teachings then we won’t go wrong. We will treat people good and be seen as someone worth trusting – and that’s quite the reward in and of itself.

If I had to choose core scriptures I live by – I would choose:

Matt 7:12 “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (A great summation – also the ‘what goes around’ idea or ‘love your neighbor as yourself’).

Matt 5:44-45 “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” (Equality and justice/being fair)

Matthew 6:12 “And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” (forgiveness and its role in repair)

Matt 6:34 “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (dealing with worry and putting life in perspective)

Matt 7:1 “Do not judge so that you will not be judged” (The role of judgment or being able to control judgment)

I want to throw in a tonne more from the parables in Matthew – but I will leave those. Basically, my paradigm is simple. I use Matthew as my guide-book – the teachings that I will build around. From the beatitudes (as an index) – to the sermon (the beginning of the teachings and the main body – also the summation) – to the rest of the book (supplemental works to build upon the beatitudes and stuff from the sermon).

I really like Matthew – for some reason the teachings in that book have changed my life 180 fold. They really speak to me and my life – they helped me develop a direction for change concerning my attitudes and perspectives on life. I couldn’t be more thankful for that to be honest.

Jim Jordan said...

JT--Without Love of self you cannot see Love anywhere else.

I think love of self is universal, that's why God tempers it with the two commandments. Even people with "low self esteem" reveal their self-love. How many people do we know who want others to pity them?

Jim said...

I left you a reply at my site, but didn't hear back from you. My own feelings are that the Book wasn't meant to be "cherry-picked" in any form or fashion. In truth, I view such practice as a form of idolatry where men create God in their "image" instead of the other way around. I told the kids at the Youth Detention Center this past weekend that I "go to the Bible to find God, but the Book, itself, is NOT God, indeed God speaks to us in other ways also if we are but hungry to know Him". Those last few words, in fact, are a major part of how I find salvation to be and I try not to judge another by my own perception of things, for we are all on separate journeys, each with our own history and our own entrance point into this. My one refuse-to-back-away-from item in this, however, is the Deity-fused-with-humanity of Christ; but, again, do not see it my place to pronounce immediate judgment of heaven or hell upon anyone because they may disagree with me.

If you're interested, I linked to you in my last post. Hope what I wrote doesn't offend you.....

Tit for Tat said...

Hi Jim

Thanks for stopping by. No need to worry about offended me. I actually like to discourse, if we disagree thats ok. I learn much from the discussions. Feel free to comment anytime.

Redlefty said...

I like your post and thanks for your comment on my blog.

I'm in total agreement with just about everything you said. And, crazy as it sounds, even though I go to church I don't think people have to believe Jesus was God to be "Christian". I don't think Jesus himself would have required that of others.

Thanks again, and I look foward to going back through your site and reading more.

freestyleroadtrip said...

I like the post, and I'll answer the question. I tend to hang my Christian faith on Christ's words in Matthew that all the law (meaning the Jewish Old Testament law) hangs on this: Love God with all your being and love others as you love yourself. It removes judgment and offers grace. I recently read a quote by a Jewish agnostic. In it essentially said that the best Christians with which he associated were those who followed this path but didn't really care if you converted to it or not. That is the way I want to live. I want to care tremendously about my fellow man and accept his beliefs. If those beliefs need changing, the God in which I believe is big enough to change them without me trying to force him on people.

Tit for Tat said...

FSR(Doug) and Redlefty

Thanks for your comments. I think we have some similarities and enough differences to have some good discussion ;)

Luke said...

hey bud, just drop'n by cause i put in an old CD and heard a kick ass song that i thought you'd like!

The Used: Blue and Yellow

check it out here and let me know what ya think! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIIIts7oSow

Andrew said...

That list is a wonderful statement of Faith. Well done!

Tit for Tat said...

Thanks Andrew