In an old video about people who influence our world was a scene in which noted Swiss born Christian theologian Karl Barth pulled down an old dusty copy of the Bible and began reading. Years of human reasoning and highly intelligent surmising stood by as he pondered the divinely appointed words of the Savior. It created a stir in his soul from which he began to see that what Christ had already said, in all of its power, simplicity and authority gave him a brand new start in life and an entirely new view of the world.
Later, when asked by a newspaper reporter to state briefly the most important thing he had ever learned, he replied with – “Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so.”
Rather than being curt with the reporter, Barth was indicating that he had regressed to a state of childlikeness, that state where true understanding and wisdom stems from – it is the ability to see unhindered by doubt. It is the state of being that slaughters presuppositions and can see God even in a world where abject darkness prevails. In fact, no wisdom is as pure as the trusting nature found in children. Barth was attesting that he had touched the meaning of Christ’s words even as they touched him. It was the word of God alive in his experience, not just in his head.
It was the quickening of Matthew 18: 3 in his life and all his theology would be tempered and influenced by it for the rest of his life. Christ said, “Verily I say unto you, except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”
Religion is a poor substitute for relationship with the Savior
The western world has somehow concluded (much like the theory of evolution) that because there are similarities in all religions they must all stem from or share the same roots. Yet, we are not willing to say that there are not still dangerous cults, false religions and pseudo religions that bring us great harm. The mistake of accepting these similarities as proof that all religions worship the same God is silly, but much worse it is an error that can cost you an eternity.
The world view is that if enough people attach themselves to something or affirm its intrinsic value it must be the right thing. No further examination is given and the generalization sweeps us into an error that costs more than we will be willing to pay on that final day.
Things that are popular have more power than sweeping ideologies like communism or Nazi-ism. We are more prone to be swept away by familiarity than ideology.
Comparative religion is a farce fostered by pseudo intellectualism, because if a true comparison was made only Christianity would be seen as the way to God.
In Islam we have a man who entered a cave and emerged with a vision that we clearly see in today’s world produces wholesale death and mayhem.
In Christianity we have a man who also was slain and then after being deposited in a cave, came out of the cave alive. He gave a true life warning in his resurrection that says – you too, will be resurrected and stand before God. Is there anything in Islam, eastern religions or the nascent offerings of religious nonsense that even remotely compares to that? If you can name even one please write to me and let me know because after fifty years of looking I have never seen it!
The idea that if a billion people believe in something, it can’t be wrong is in itself the folly of trusting yourself to the corrupted thinking of un-regenerate man. At the risk of repeating myself too often on the subject, I must say, yet again, that religion is not off limits to the god (Satan) of this world. It is the most important weapon in his arsenal.
Ancient Vs. Modern – The other universal error of Godless thinking
Most people think the bible is the big book of right and wrong, but it is much more than that. It is the authoritative book of life and death. It is given by the author of life to the living to keep them living – forever.
It is the nature of the words in the bible that is most often misunderstood. They are often relegated to the ancient past and seen as something that has no connection to the ravages and complexities of modern life in our brave new world.
We prefer what we imagine is more forward thinking such as science or modern philosophy. We are numbed by the nascent and we trust what we know of the day rather than some ancient record of a dying Savior who said he will one day judge the whole world by the words he spoke.
“He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” (Jn 12: 48)
The most serious error is to see God’s message to mankind as something from the past or the future – it is neither. God speaks to man from the eternal, he had no beginning and he has no end and he is willing to share his eternity with us. His words are life, they are timeless.
“It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” (John 6: 63)
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.