Is it wrong to demean other religions? Should we just live and let live? Does a Christian criticizing other religions misrepresent the Jesus in the Bible? These are criticisms often leveled against me by those who leave comments. Many times they return to give me more opposition.
There are Christians who carry out their ministry in a different way, and I don’t fault them for it when they stick to Biblical truth. However, there is a movement I am opposed to in Christian circles that waters down the gospel until it ceases to be the gospel to please the world in some way. That’s not me. I am a spiritual non-conformist to the pressures to embrace carnal, worldly principles. The factual, historical occurrences in the Bible were written as examples for us to learn from, which even Paul acknowledged [Romans 15:4]. Those examples tell me and all believers to stand firm on what God commands us to speak regardless of the opposition, no matter what status they have, including rulers. Here are some examples I’ve learned from:
♦ And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness. And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go. …
And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Go in, speak unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land. [Exodus 5:1-2, 6:10-11]
Pharaoh followed a different religion, but did God tell Moses to stop preaching when Pharaoh was offended? No. God sent him and Aaron back to preach the same thing. Eventually, God gave them the victory.
♦ 2 Chronicles 8: when Jehoshaphat visited evil king Ahab in Israel to join him in battle, the prophet Micaiah warned that Ahab and his false prophets of paganism were deceived by a lying spirit and that Ahab would die in the battle. Micaiah was subsequently thrown in prison for his God-given prophecy, but he did not change his message.
♦ But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted. Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads. As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house. [Ezekiel 3:7-9]
The Lord warned Ezekiel that Israel would not listen to his true prophecies, but he told him to preach anyway. He even gave Ezekiel the promise he would make him just as stubborn for righteousness as the Israelites were against righteousness.
♦ Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison. But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life. …
Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. [Acts 5:17-20, 29-30]
What God commanded through the angel overrode what the Sanhedrin commanded, so the apostles continued preaching and even pointed out the Sanhedrin’s sins.
♦ And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ. And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean; from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles. …
Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them. [Acts 18:5-6, 9-10]
In spite of opposition from people following wrong religion in Corinth, the Lord told Paul to continue preaching there because there were still more people Paul was unaware of that would be saved. So Paul continued to preach in spite of the opposition.
This is why I pay no heed to those who want me to stop speaking God’s truth. The way I see it, they don’t have the power to put me in heaven or hell and they didn’t come as a sinless savior to die for my sins.
Harry A. Gaylord