Monday, June 21, 2010
Faithful's Defense continued - Superstition
Continuing on from our previous post, we consider Faithful's defense against the charge leveled by one Superstition.
Superstition: My lord, I have no great acquaintance with this man, nor do I desire to have further knowledge of him. However, this I know, that he is a very pestilent fellow, from some discourse that I had with him the other day, in this town; for then, talking with him, I heard him say, that our religion was naught, and such by which a man could by no means please God. Which saying of his, my lord, your lordship very well knows what necessarily thence will follow, to wit, that we still do worship in vain, are yet in our sins, and finally shall be damned: and this is that which I have to say.
Oh, for such grace to speak so plainly. Superstition understood somewhat from faithful that according to his religion he could never PLEASE GOD. And if God is not pleased the he will surely and finally be damned. We know that if Faithful said such things he said them in love. In hope that the words of his counsel would work to life in the hearer.
FAITHFUL's response to this Charge:
As to the second, to wit, Mr. Superstition, and his charge against me, I said only this, that in the worship of God there is required a divine faith; but there can be no divine faith without a divine revelation of the will of God. Therefore, whatever is thrust into the worship of God that is not agreeable to divine revelation, cannot be done but by a human faith; which faith will not be profitable to eternal life.
The Worship of God requires a divine Faith. We cannot devise whatever seems best to us and offer that up. But a DIVINE FAITH is required. What does the scriptures say:
Heb 11:6 Without Faith no man can please GOD.
But, note the further connection made by Faithful. There will be no divine faith without a divine revelation of the will of God. Again the Word of God is paramount. Those who would eschew the holy scripture have not a divine revelation and if no divine revelation there will be no DIVINE Faith. And no divine faith no TRUE worship of God.
FINALLY Faithful adds that whatever is THRUST into the worship of GOD not found in holy scriptures - not agreeable to divine revelation -- cannot be done but by a HUMAN FAITH - and such a human faith is not profitable to eternal life.
What superstitions are thrust into the worship of GOD? I was reminded of so many things some held very tightly even among evangelical churches.
"The most important thing is that you love yourself. You cannot love God or others until you first Love yourself."
"God only wants to make you rich, Name it and claim it, positive confession, you are god."
"Bow down and worship that wafer for it is now Christ offered again a sacrifice."
"Christ paid for part of your sins but you must yet make up by suffering in purgatory for those that remain."
I once had a friend in his early twenties who went to church camp, had a great time there, and at the conclusion of the week made some vows and together with the other campers they braided a string together and solemnly put it around the wrists of all campers as a means to strengthen their vows, the string of power. Remove the string lose the power. Oh boy. My friend wore that string for months on end - it was filthy, but how could he take it off, solemnly the string was placed around his wrist. Where is this in the word of GOD?
SO CALLED DELIVERANCE MINISTRIES:
Jesus can save you from your sin, but subsequent to this you need to be delivered from all the demon strong holds. Salvation is good, but deliverance even better. And how to accomplish this? Research your ancestry, find out what a wicked person your great-grandmother was and REPENT FOR HER, break the bondage. Why do you still sin? Because you have yet to be delivered. REPENT for the sins of your ancestors and break that strong hold. (same friend with the string was caught up in this also.) This wasn't your typical charismatic power encounter but a kind of psychological/deliverance technique popularized by Neil Anderson and Mark Bubeck. SUPERSTITION! When I protested my friend said simply "you just don't understand the deep things of the word of God like my Pastor." My reply: "your pastor doesn't understand the gospel and the power thereof."
"Don't tell me things about Jesus, I just want to follow him."
SUPERSTITION - HUMAN FAITH
GOOD COUNSEL FROM FAITHFUL:
"whatever is thrust into the worship of God that is not agreeable to divine revelation, cannot be done but by a human faith..."
In connection to Faithful's response to Superstition's charge my girls and I discussed those who claim: "You make an idol of the bible." "The bible is not God." "This is idolatry to worship a book." "Jesus is the word of God not the bible."
Certainly we know the bible is not God. But also, when we read the bible, God is speaking to us. The Spirit of God by the Word of God is communicating to us truth and Divine revelation. We don't worship paper and ink, but we do worship a God who has revealed himself to us via the Word and Spirit.