The Ways of Compromise
December 1, 2003
Glen Moore (AGM Missionary)
“I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
"The Ways of Compromise"
Thanksgiving - We certainly hope and pray that your Thanksgiving was as great as Carol’s and mine. We have so much to be thankful for. It would take far more space than I have here to list it all, not only for this year (which has been beyond measure), but for my whole life. I know I don’t deserve anything, but God has been so good to me, and I fall so far short, it amazes me the incredible bounty of love that God has available for His children. Which brings me to my question: Who are all these people thanking at Thanksgiving? And next we have Christmas, which is about Christ, not presents; what are they celebrating?
We all know the story of the Pilgrims first Thanksgiving in 1621 in which the early Americans gave thanks to God for bringing them through their first year (even though ½ of their company died). Then in 1789, following a proclamation issued by President George Washington, America celebrated its first Day of Thanksgiving to GOD!! Wow, the American government, officially proclaimed thanks to God. What God were they talking about? Well it was not the god of the Koran, nor any other god than the only God, who’s Son (Jesus) died for us, that we may live.
I found it interesting, if not disheartening to have a discussion with a Christian during the Thanksgiving weekend, centering around the subject of all peoples (religious groups and organizations) coming together in harmony and love for a common cause to help people. Now, you may be thinking, “well, what’s wrong with that,” --everything. Before you get in a huff about what I’m saying, think about it. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
If “true Christians,” stand hand-in-hand with other “religious” groups working in some “good work,” we are in affect endorsing the other religion as - OK. IT’S NOT OK! You must ask yourself, “do I believe Jesus is the only way to heaven”(JN 14:6). If you believe that fact, then how can we stand together with another group that says “Jesus is not the only way.” We are to be a witness, a testimony to the fact that Jesus is the way, and if we join up with some group with the thought “oh, this is a good cause,” then our witness is: that any way to God (heaven) is ok, as long as we are doing good. Doing good has nothing to do with having eternal fellowship with God (Eph 2:8-9, Titus 3:5, Gal 2:16).
The believer who made the comment to me said, “Glen, that’s just too narrow.” Apparently many believers as well as non believers don’t understand that Jesus and the Gospel are narrow! Matthew 7:13-14 tells us exactly how narrow He is and the consequences of not following the narrow way.
13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
God does not want us “teamed up” with non-believers in the name of religious help. The bible says in 2 Cor 6:14:
“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?”
This does not mean that we should not have friends that are non-believers, we absolutely should. Jesus met with everyone, even as we should, but not as a group of different religious bodies or groups. God calls us to reach out and love everyone; but do we love them if we don’t at some time offer them the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Now they may not be interested in the truth of the gospel (see Jn 12:48), but we have at least offered to them the free gift of eternal life through Jesus.
We must not be ignorant of the devises of Satan (2 Cor 2:2) to keep people confused as to the way to eternal life. What better way to confuse the lost than to join hands with a “lost” religion in some good work. If we true Christians want to do a “good work” then good, do it, but not with a “lost religious group.” In these days of “tolerance” we can be easily swayed by the “world” that if we are “good people” we will join the world in a spirit of tolerance, peace, and love, to help people. We need to help people, but what we need to help them do is meet Christ, their only hope.
It is a misnomer for people to think Jesus came to teach us how to live in peace with each other and do good. In Matthew 10:24 and the verses that follow Jesus makes a profound and sometimes hard to swallow statement:
“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.”
Warren Wiersby’s commentary puts it like this:
Verses 34-39 it indicates clearly that the Gospel is a divider of people. Christ is the Prince of Peace, and the Gospel is the message of peace, but when people; confess Christ, they usually make enemies. Christ separates and makes the strongest natural ties of family and friends seem less important. Christians cannot serve Christ without taking up the cross; this means being crucified to self and bearing His reproach. To save our lives means to lose them but to lose our lives for His sake means to save them.
Jesus came for one purpose; it was to die for us as payment for our sin that we could have eternal life. Now, don’t get me wrong, we should do good and help people, but what good will it do them when death comes knocking at their door, and they are not ready.
The last time man had such a desire to “come together” came in Genesis 11 when the people wanted to build a tower and a city which would tie them into a solid group, so that they might be powerful even without God’s help. The group wanted to make a name for themselves (“make for ourselves a name”). Their towering structure would be a monument to their energy, daring, genius, and resources. Does that sound like any of our religious organizations today? You see we must be careful who we join hands with in the name of tolerance and good will. God was certainly not pleased by man’s effort, and confounded their language as a direct action to stop them. So, I don’t think God is impressed by our efforts to do “good works” in a spirit of tolerance and peace. God is concerned for a person’s soul, not the good works they can do. He does not need our good works. What He wants is for us to be a child of His. We are all His creation, but we are not all His children.
Are you a Child of God or a spectator in a religious group?
Remember as we celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas what it is all about, and who we have to be thankful for: JESUS!
With all our hearts Carol and I do wish you a happy and merry Christmas, just make sure you have received the greatest gift of all: eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Why not offer that gift to a friend or family member this Christmas.
Romans 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
"The Way" is written by missionary Glen Moore based solely on his thoughts and study. If you have any comments - please email Glen at firstname.lastname@example.org