(Ten Similarities and Distinctions)
- Both PSEUDO and TRUE Christianity promote the Holy Bible as basis for belief in God.
- Both preach belief in, and worship of, One God.
- Both preach Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior.
- Both preach salvation through Jesus Christ by the shedding of His blood on the cross.
- Both preach Christ's resurrection from the dead and His 2nd coming.
- Both preach judgment according to faith and works.
- Both preach the resurrection of the dead and life after death.
- Both preach hell as the place for retribution.
- Both preach eternal life with God in heaven.
- Both preach aspiration and fervent desire to be with God in eternity.
1. PSEUDO Christianity claims competence to understand and interpret the word of God. The result is division into denominations. The establishment of Seminaries and Bible Schools, an "addition" to the word of God, for each sect aggravates the division. Confusion therefore is evident from the claim of truth by each denomination. Human reasoning and passion are the cause for this incident. Warning:
Prov. 30:6 "Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar."
Col. 2:8 "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy…after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ."
Jer. 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? "
For details, read THE SIN OF ADAM AND EVE - http://www.purechristianity.org/sinofeve.htm
TRUE Christianity professes incompetence to perceive the message of the word of God. Therefore it preaches spiritual humility to obtain God's mercy for wisdom to understand His words. Reward:
Matt. 11:25 "At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes."
Isa. 28:9 (KJV only) "Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts."
2 Tim. 3:15 "And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."
For details, read THE CHOSEN FEW - http://www.purechristianity.org/chosenfe.htm
2. PSEUDO Christianity, for reliance on human capability to understand the word of God, fails to identify God of the Old and New Testament. Often heard when asked about the clear identity of the One True God is the plausible excuse, "It is impossible to identify the infinite God and the Lord with the finite mind of man." Thus, the rebuke:
1 Cor. 1:19 "For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. 20Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? 21For after that…the world by wisdom knew not God…"
John 8:19 "Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also."
John 8:54 "Jesus answered…it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: 55Yet ye have not known him…"
TRUE Christianity, by virtue of total trust in God for divine wisdom, is endowed with a clear perception of the identity of the One True God of the Holy Bible. This is the initial great miracle that God is endowing His chosen. Simon Peter identified Jesus "not with his flesh and blood, but by the revelation of the Father" (Matt. 16:16-17). Saul of Tarsus, later known as Paul the apostle, received this miracle when he recognized his Lord/God on his way to Damascus (Acts 9:3-6). The evidence:
Col. 1:26 "Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: "
Heb. 8:11 "And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest."
John 16:1 "These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended. 2They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth (1 John 3:15) you will think that he doeth God service. 3And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor me."
For details read: JESUS OF THE ORIGINAL APOSTLES
THE GOD OF THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENT
THE "666 MARK" - YESTERDAY, TODAY, OR TOMORROW
3. PSEUDO Christianity is overly concerned with the construction of chapels, churches, and cathedrals where sect leaders are distinguished and looked by the laity. Christ admonished His Apostles on the meanness of this practice.
Matt. 23:8 "But be not ye called Rabbi (teacher/pastor/shepherd/leader): for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. 10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ."
Luke 22:25 "…The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. 26But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve."
In TRUE Christianity, Christ and His Disciple never built such physical structures or edifices but rather produced spiritual temples by preaching the truth in the word of God. This is what is written:
1 Cor. 3:16 "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?"
For details, read CHAPELS, CHURCHES, AND CATHEDRALS
SPIRITUAL vs. RELIGIOUS FELLOWSHIP
4. PSEUDO Christianity preaches easy way of salvation. No wonder chapels, churches, and cathedrals are teeming with people thinking that number is the gauge for the truth. However, our Lord said:
Matt. 22:14 "For many are called, but few are chosen."
Matt. 7:13 "… wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat."
TRUE Christianity recognizes difficulty and hardness of salvation. While God is ready to pour His mercy, only a few people truly humble themselves as to be gifted with faith. Admonition:
Matt. 18:3 "And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
Eph. 2:8 "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"
Matt. 7:14 "…strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."
5. PSEUDO Christianity, while professing belief in the immutability of God, cannot comprehend the immutability of His words whilst the Lord is being represented thereto. Thus, it teaches amendments and irrelevance of some word of God, which is tantamount to "deduction," failing to perceive the realization of the truth in:
Matt. 5:17 "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. 18For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled."
Rev. 22:19 "And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."
Thus, it preaches that some Old Testament laws, stories, and incidents are no longer applicable or relevant in the New Testament.
TRUE Christianity, by virtue of the divine revelation of truth, unfolds the immutability of God through the immutability of His words. Thus, Old Testament laws are seen to be equally applicable during the time of Christ, in the future as they are now, and this is not based on human wisdom but on God's divulgement of the spiritual meaning of His words. God words are like prophecies that are fulfilled all the time. Thus only God can interpret His words through the words:
2 Pet. 1:20 "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation."
Eccl. 1:9 "The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun."
For details read THE TOWER OF BABEL -
DECIPHERING GOD'S SPIRITUAL LANGUAGE -
THE SIN OF ADAM AND EVE -
FROM THE RED SEA TO THE WILDERNESS -
6. PSEUDO Christianity puts the BODY over the SOUL, while preaching salvation for the latter. The inveiglement or bait to embrace the doctrines of denominations is chartered on the physical-material benefit from the word of God. These are the "miracles" purportedly coming from God through His words. Jesus Christ has this to say:
John 6:63 " 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 6:26 "Jesus said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled."
TRUE Christianity clearly recognizes Christ's statement, "the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit." The life of the Apostles, the foundation of faith (Eph. 2:20), is a demonstration for this truth. Never is there anything written about them where they received miracles benefiting the body. If ever, it is just a "bonus" from the circumstances coming from God. Jesus Christ set this principle when He opened the eyes of a blind man:
John 9:36 "He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? 37And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. 38And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him. 39And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. 40And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? 41Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth."
Read: MIRACLES AND WONDERS -
7. PSEUDO Christianity preaches prayer the same way as other religions, Islam, Buddhism, etc. do. But that is how human wisdom perceives the word of God on the subject. Warning, how could it be followed with this command?
1 Thes. 5:17 "Pray without ceasing."
Thus, the rebuke:
Mark 7:6 "… This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. 7Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."
Isaiah 29:13 "Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: 14Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid."
TRUE Christianity follows the way the Apostles as they saw this in the life of our Lord Jesus Christ. True prayer and worship is spiritual relationship with God through His words. Thus, genuine praise for God is the lifting up of His words. Prayer as it is known should only be the manifestation of this divine relationship.
Related to PRAYER is FASTING. Fasting is not hunger for bread as Satan saw in Jesus when He fasted 40 days and 40 nights, but rather hunger for the truth in the word. Thus, Christ's rebuke:
Matt. 4:4 "But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
This is in line with a prophecy:
Amos 8:11 "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: 12And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it."
8. PSEUDO Christianity cannot sustain without the literal application of the law on tithes and offering. The Apostles, following the Way shown by Jesus Christ, did not preach the law in the manner that is being applied using human understanding. Nowhere in the Gospels and Epistles can we find Paul and the other Apostles made preaching as a profession or a full time job.
Acts 20:33 "I have coveted no man’s silver, or gold, or apparel. 34Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me."
2 Thes. 3:10 "For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat."
TRUE Christianity follows the law on tithes the Way Jesus Christ and the Apostles preached and applied it. It is spiritual and not literal-physical. The spread of truth in the word of God is the responsibility of God using His chosen servants as instruments. This was seen in Nineveh when God sent Jonah, but it is not literal-physical as the Natural Man (1 Cor. 2:14) understands it.
Isaiah 55:8 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts."
Read TITHES & OFFERING AND THE TEMPLE MERCHANTS -
9. PSEUDO Christianity follows the Pastoral System where religious leaders and their appointees act as steersman or guides for the laity. This is based on human perception of the following:
Eph. 4:11 "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers."
Matt. 28:19 (NIV and other versions) "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father…"
The Pastoral System had its origin in the Old Testament when the Israelites wanted to have a king like the Gentiles:
1 SAMUEL 8:4-5 "Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, and said unto him…now make us a king to judge us like all the nations."
Is it not God, the Master and Shepherd? Ever since, God had been leading them who looked after their spiritual welfare. Does not the Shepherd know what is good for the flock? God therefore was greatly slighted by this act:
1 SAMUEL 8:7 "And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them."
God warned His people that He would be sharing His glory with the "king that would reign over them." Christ saw the Pastoral System when He warned His Disciples in:
Matt. 23:8 "But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. 9And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven."
God further forewarned of the imposition that the leader would exact from the people:
1 SAMUEL 8:15 "And he will take the tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give to his officers, and to his servants."
1 SAMUEL 8:17 "He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants."
Very clearly, the warning refers to the literal application of the law on tithes and offering. However, the Israelites ignored these warning and therefore God acceded to their demand giving them Saul as their first king. The Natural Man (1 Cor. 2:14) sees King Saul as a political leader instead of spiritual master as the message of the word imparts. God is speaking in parables or "spiritual things." (Ezek. 20:49). Christ saw how the people were heavily burdened by this system:
Matt. 23:4 ''For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers."
ORIGIN OF THE PASTORAL SYSTEM
APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION DOCTRINE
TRUE Christianity recognizes God's sole authority to teach. His servants act only as His mouthpiece. This is analogous to God speaking over the microphone and His servants acting only as the speaker system. There is supposed to be no sound from the speaker system without somebody talking over the microphone. If ever there is an extraneous sound, this is the nauseating hiss and hum which is painful to the ears and this corresponds to people taking the role of God in explaining His words. Christ saw this in His time in the religious leaders when they appropriate His titles:
Matt. 28:8 "But be not ye called Rabbi (or teacher or preacher or shepherd): for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."
10. PSEUDO Christianity preaches immortality of the unsaved soul in everlasting punishment.
This is the fruit of human wisdom in, "And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal."
TRUE Christianity recognizes the death of the soul, which is the 2nd death.
Ezek. 18:20 "The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father…"
Rev. 21:8 "But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
Based on the fairness of God, punishment is commensurate with the evil acts of the unsaved:
Heb. 9:27 "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment."
Rev. 20:12 "And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works."
2 Cor. 5:10 "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad."
In the beginning God was alone. His plan of having an eternal companion will be fulfilled, as He foreshadowed this in Adam when He gave him Eve for a wife. God is the Bridegroom and the chosen few will be His Bride.
Rev. 21:2 "And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 5And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 6And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son."