Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Wrong Cross. Jesus is not your tormentor.

In a dream I saw a Christian hanging on a cross. 

I don’t remember any more detail except that the Christian had been experiencing disappointing results in his efforts to serve God.
What was the reason for this lack of success. 

The words in my dream were as clear as the sun in the sky. 

“The wrong cross!”

The Christian was nailed to a cross but it was not by God’s appointment. What could that mean?

In the dream I saw nothing more specific and God did not speak to me directly about it but as I pondered the message, many real life stories came to mind.

Lord Jesus and the Apostle Paul both taught that celibacy is a calling and a gift of God given only to some people. Paul was celibate but most of the Apostles, including Peter, were married.

Yet there are some churches that require all full time spiritual workers to be celibate. We read of sex scandals in the media on a regular basis. 

Clearly celibacy is for many people “The Wrong Cross.”

Many Christian women see their husband criminally assaulting their own children or corrupting them with pornography or incest. 

When such women protest, they are often not believed by church leaders or else they are told it is their own fault for not being a sexually satisfying wife. They are often told that it is a sin to leave their husband and that: “God hates divorce,” under any circumstances. 

If these women submit to this torture, they are on “The Wrong Cross.”

There are women who are taught that contraception is a sin and they must produce as many babies as they can.

They are on “The Wrong Cross.”

There are women who are taught that they must always, always, always obey their husbands. 

They are not free to serve God as disciples who receive their calling and direction straight from God. They are on “The Wrong Cross.”

There are women who are taught that they must not preach or teach or they must not preach or teach to men. Many are called and gifted by God to do what their leaders or husbands forbid. 

Many of these women are on “The Wrong Cross.”

Many Christians are taught that submission to the leaders of their church is their first duty. To leave or join another church is sin. 

They must sacrifice their dreams for their own life and ministry to serve the vision of the Senior Pastor. This can lead to a life of passive religiosity. They are not allowed to think for themselves or express any opinions other than those of their leaders.

These people are on “The Wrong Cross.”

Catholic Priests are called Father but many non Catholics are taught to be like obedient children under the control of a preacher.

I once heard a preacher teach that we must never challenge our pastor over anything because a pastor is accountable only to God and not to any man or woman.

What did Jesus say?

But you, do not be called 'Rabbi'; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren. 

Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 

And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ. Mt 23:8-10 (NKJV) 

There are Christians who are taught that God uses sickness to purify us through suffering. Many people suffer sickness, believing they are glorifying God.

They are on “The Wrong Cross.”

There is only one cross which deals with sickness, the cross of Jesus Christ.

When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, 

that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: "He Himself took our infirmities And bore our sicknesses." Mt 8:16-17 (NKJV) 

When I read the Gospels, I see Jesus is the Healer, not the tormentor.

There are Christians who have been abused or mistreated for years. They develop a victim mentality, obsessed with injustice and their own suffering. Jesus lived, died and rose again to set you free.

Don’t stay on “The Wrong Cross.”

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