Religious or Christian?

I’ll be honest. I have not looked up the definitions to these terms. These are my opinions. I hope they will bring clarification to those who think everyone who goes to church is religious.

Religious: Someone who has a belief in God, may or may not go to church, and who claims affiliation with one denomination/belief system, or another. This group would include those who asked Jesus to save them, read their Bible sometimes (or not), and ignore God most of the time. They have their “fire insurance” giving them a free ticket out of hell, but they don’t take God very seriously. These are people who would rather go to a football game, stay home and watch their favorite TV show, go fishing, etc., than go to church and worship the God who saved them. Some religious people go to church on Sunday morning (only), put on their spiritual faces and lift their hands in praise. then they go home and cuss out their kids or neighbors, watch the garbage our society calls enterntainment on TV, and live the same as always. Sorry if I sound critical. I’m not trying to be. I’m just clarifying the differences here.

Christian: someone who tries to follow Christ. Christ is the first part of the world. The word Christian was first used in Antioch after Jesus’s resurrection from the dead, and was used to describe the twelve apostles. If you read the scriptures and study the life of the apostles, you will find that they were dedicated to the purpose of evangelization, the spreading of the gospel. But they didn’t just talk about Jesus and the price He paid to deliver us from hell; they helped and encouraged others; they reached out to the poor and needy. They lived what they believed. A Christian is someone who gives God/Jesus first place in his/her life. We still make mistakes and mess up, but we try to live what we believe.

I once heard a preacher ask this question: “If you were on trial for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”

No one is perfect. We will never be perfect in this life. But just as we should do our best on the job, at home with our families, as parents, we should also give our best to Jesus. He deserves it more than anyone.

So if you are a religious person, I would encourage you, if you haven’t already, to ask Jesus to save you from your sin (nature) and then get an Authorized (AV) King James Bible, get involved with a church who uses and believes that Bible, (they are getting hard to find, but ask God and He will direct your path), and study that Bible. There are many good study Bibles out there. I like the Open Bible, but Dakes, Henry Morris, Schofield, are a few of the good study Bibles. Another is Thompson Chain Reference. Take your time to look at each one, see what features might best help you and appeal to you. Read it every day, looking up the cross references and reading the commentary notes. As you grow in the knowledge of the Lord you will be able to discern opinion in the commentary from truth.

Don’t expect to agree with everything a pastor/preacher says. They are human too and can be just as wrong as we are, but they have studied more than we, are (hopefully) called of God to the pulpit (which eliminates female pastors: see I Tim. 2:11-14). Just be willing to listen, take notes, and ponder what he says when you get home. If you have questions, ask the pastor or Sunday School teacher. (Yes, adults needs Sunday School too.) Many churches have a new converts class. If the church you choose does, that would be a good place to start.

Some words in the Bible are words we don’t use today: throughly (not the same as thoroughly), ensample (not the same as example), and a few others. As you become familiar with your Bible you will soon be able to understand the thees, thous, thine, and so forth.

I recommend starting your study with the gospel of John, then go back to Matthew and read the rest of the gospels. Many people believe that there are mistakes in the Bible because some of the accounts of events in the gospels differ from one another. Each gospel writer is showing us a different aspect of Jesus and His ministry and so focus on different details. It’s like what details you include when viewing an accident. You may only cite those details that you think matter. In the case of the Bible, God inspired every word, based on what He wanted told by that writer.

Proverbs is the book of wisdom in the Bible.

10 Misconceptions About Being A Christian

1)      I’m an American

2)      I was raised in a Christian home

3)      My dad/uncle/grandfather was a preacher

4)      I’ve gone to church all my life

5)      I’m a good person

6)      I’ve never committed a crime

7)      I read the Bible and pray

8)      I don’t hurt people

9)      Someone told me I’m a Christian

10)   I was born a Christian

I have heard every one of these statements from various people. None of them are what makes anyone a Christian.

Someone recently made the comment: “I’m no sinner. We’re not bad people.” Anyone who watches the news knows there are bad people in the world. If you aren’t perfect you’re a sinner. There is only one perfect person who ever lived: Jesus the Christ, the only BEGOTTEN Son of God.

John 3:16–For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:17–For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

John 3:18–He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 3:19–And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

John 3:20–For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

John 3:21–But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

These are words that Jesus himself spoke.  He was fully God and fully man. These are copied from the King James Version of the Bible. We have many Bibles today, and all of them are supposed to be easier to understand. But if you compare them to the King James you find that most of the time, where the words are changed, the meaning is also changed. There has to be a standard. I would highly encourage anyone who truly wants to follow God to study how all of these versions came about. I have done so and have concluded that the King James is God’s preserved inerrant word for English-speaking people.

Isa_64:6  But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Think about this: how can any mere mortal be good enough for a holy, righteous, perfect God? How many good deeds would it take to deserve the cruelty that Jesus the Christ suffered WILLINGLY for our sakes?

The apostle Paul called himself the chiefest of sinners. I don’t know about you, but I know my faith and my walk with the Lord are not even close to his.

Rom 3:10—As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Rom 3:11—There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

Rom 3:12—They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Rom 3:13—Their throat is an open sepulchre (grave); with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:

Rom 3:14—Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:

Rom 3:15—Their feet are swift to shed blood:

Rom 3:16—Destruction and misery are in their ways:

Rom 3:17—And the way of peace have they not known:

Rom 3:18—There is no fear of God before their eyes.

The above verses are what we were before we recognized that we were sinners and asked Jesus to forgive us and change us. Even if we’ve only done some of these things (at least in thought, if not deed), we are still guilty. Jesus took OUR punishment, yours and mine, on a cruel cross, after being beaten with a cat-o-nine-tails until he looked like 100 pounds of ground hamburger meat, had his beard plucked out by the handful, was spat on, punched or slapped in the face while blindfolded, had a wreath of 2-inch thorns thrust on his head, and finally nailed to a cross. He didn’t have to go through all of that. And on top of that, while he was on that cross, his Father turned his back, because God is so pure, righteous and holy that He can’t look at sin. Jesus didn’t just carry our sins. Scripture says he BECAME sin for us. It was the first time Jesus was ever spiritually separated from his Father. It was the first and only time he addressed his Father as God when he cried out, “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?”

Rom. 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Does a sovereign God have the right to decide what’s right and what’s wrong? Guess what? No mere human is going to tell God what He can or cannot do. If you don’t think He’s being fair, your opinion isn’t going to change anything with God

Rom 10:9—That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

Rom 10:10—For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Rom 10:13—For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Rom 10:14—How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?

Rom 10:15—And how shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

The only way to be saved is to accept the fact that you are a sinner, (that means agree with God that this is a fact), ask God to forgive you of your sins, and invite Him to take control of your life. It must be done with a sincere heart, in humility. After all, you are addressing the Supreme Being: then find a church that is friendly and preaches from the King James Bible (so you get the truth, without omissions), attend Sunday School (yes, adults need teaching too), and read your Bible every day. I usually recommend starting with the gospel of John. There are 31 chapters in Proverbs: one for every day of the month. As you read and listen, ask God the Holy Spirit to teach you and help you understand. The more you read, the more you understand. Don’t try to absorb too much at once. Start with just a few verses a day. Then think about them as you go through the day, pondering what those verses mean to you, and how they apply to you. This is how you grow in the Lord.  Have a great day.

Thought I had posted this last week, but apparently there was a snafu.

Author Alert: Is Your Book Held Hostage by a Subsidy Publisher?

If you are an author looking for a publisher, PLEASE read this before submitting to any of the companies listed in this article. PLEASE use the links to websites that list “publishers” that are really vanity houses and scam artists. Don’t be fooled if they tell you they are a subsidiary or affiliate of a Christian publisher. Do your homework.

The Book Designer

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