But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.The word "tolerance" (or a lack of it) has been tossed around far too much when addressing Bible believing Christians. Are they the only group who has to be tolerant of all other beliefs and yet not be accepted for their personal faith? There is tolerance for every social group no matter how perverted or out of mainstream. Are we to be tolerant of muslims who are required by their writings to kill or enslave non-muslims? Is this the road to peace? The Holy Bible clearly teaches one route to salvation and non-acceptance of sexual immorality or belief in a different "god," and yet at the same time teaches that because of the grace and mercy we have received we are to love and pray for the lost - love the sinner, but not the sin.
Christian rights have surely been eroded over the past 30 years to the point that the name of Jesus can no longer be mentioned in any public forum without fear of persecution by either the ACLU or the government itself. I suggest you read the book Persecution by David Limbaugh to find out just how dangerous and widespread this has become. This despite our Constitution:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof......
And where did the term "wall of separation" come from? I've asked many people where this term can be found and almost without fail, they say "that's in the constitution." Answer this for yourself. Do you know where the term is from?
Here's the answer. It was in a letter from Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists. They had written him with concerns about the free exercise of their faith. He responded as follows:
Gentlemen, The affectionate sentiments of esteem and approbation which you are so good as to express towards me, on behalf of the Danbury Baptist Association, give me the highest satisfaction. My duties dictate a faithful and zealous pursuit of the interests of my constituents, and in proportion as they are persuaded of my fidelity to those duties, the discharge of them becomes more and more pleasing. Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for is faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church and State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.
I reciprocate your kind prayers for the protection and blessing of the common Father and Creator of man, and tender you for yourselves and your religious association, assurances of my high respect and esteem.
Before we continue, let's define tolerance using the MSN Encarta Dictionary:
Tolerance: acceptance of different views: the acceptance of the differing views of other people, for example, in religious or political matters, and fairness toward the people who hold these different views.
In America we have (or should have) freedom of religion; this is in line with God's gift of freewill to man; however, freedom of religion does not mean acceptance of those wrongly held beliefs. Nor does it mean each faith has to "be fair" to such beliefs by allowing them free exercise within a denomination or social organization. Why should the boy scouts be required to accept perverts. Oh yes...they're intolerant...homosexuals should have free reign over our youth - to exercise their perversion on our children without restraint. Wake up! Rev 3:2.
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If you call yourself a Christian and yet don't believe and accept the Bible as written, but rather reject the parts you find disagreeable or offensive you are an idolater and have broken the first commandment:
You shall have no other gods before me.
This is because you have created a god in your image. For Christians (for everyone), God has revealed himself through Holy Scripture - there is no other source for God outside of it. By purposely rejecting his word, or the part of it you dislike, you've created a god in your image and you are neither a Christian nor will you receive salvation or mercy from a jealous God. This is made clear in scripture from Genesis to the book of Revelation. As I've said before, do you suppose there is a Creator out there who can whip together a bumble bee in its splendor and yet can't get his word to us in an intelligible form? I'm not talking about minor editorial changes between source texts or available translations. These come to less than about 1% of 1% of all discrepancies in the Bible, unless they've been purposely manipulated to pervert scripture - e.g., purposeful changes made by the Jehovah's Witnesses or additions such as the Mormons. Having discounted Scripture, or the parts of it you find disagreeable, you are creating an image in your mind of what God is to you. Wake up! Habakkuk 2:19.
Another way of doing this same thing is by following church doctrine when it is contrary to scripture. The Catholic Church is notorious for this, but many denominations do the same. The Episcopal Church, among others has rejected sound biblical doctrine recently by condoning homosexuality contrary to Holy Scripture. They've rejected God in His image (and His word) to create a god as their own contrivance. There is nothing light about preaching your flock into hell because you failed to warn them of the consequences of the Holy Bible. Many denominations use the process of Confirmation as a means of bringing an individual into their organization. After the process is complete, a paper certificate is usually issued. From this point, most people truly believe they are Christians and their eternal security is assured. I can tell you this is totally unscriptural and the confirmation paper is worth only its recycle value. Unless you've made a personal commitment to Christ, the Holy Bible teaches there is no more salvation for you than an atheist. There is a glimmer of hope for some in these bodies though as evidenced by the Lord's letter to the Church in Sardis:
Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels. Revelation 3:4,5
You must ultimately be the one to decide where you will put your allegiance. By giving your tithes and offerings to an apostate church, you are contributing to exactly the opposite of the good you think you're trying to help. In essence, the devil has what you meant for Christ and you're doing nothing to further Christ's Kingdom.
If you feel differently, your knowledge of Scripture is lacking. A sobering analysis of the consequences of all such apostasy, and of the churches that hold to sound doctrine, can be found in the short letters to the seven churches in the province of Asia. See Revelation 2,3.
To address the misguided notion that Jesus came to bring peace and harmony to those who fail to call on Him:
"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn
" 'a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law--
a man's enemies will be the members of his own household.
"Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. Matthew 10:34-39
So much for peace until He returns! We can use this same terminology on a national basis. If a nation, or a people within that nation, holds firm to its conviction of Christian morality, they will be divided with those who do not hold the same values. The dividing "sword" of faith is the same. Therefore, we can assume that any nation or people who loves "tolerance" above acceptance of Christ's values is also not worthy of Him and his merciful blessings. Wake up. Rev 3:2.
When He said, "Peace be with you" in Luke 24:36, he was not talking to the world at large. Rather, he was talking to his disciples and those who would, in the future, accept his message. His demonstrations as the humble and suffering servant were meant to show his followers how to show Christian love to the world. He humbly rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and washed his disciples' feet as an example. Contrast this to his return:
I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. "He will rule them with an iron scepter." He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written:
KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. Revelation 19:11-16
The white horse signifies his return as the conquering King. And so much for love and "tolerance" for those who failed to accept his Gospel. This is why true Christians so desperately want the non-saved to wake up and accept Christ's free gift now. Wake up. Rev 3:2.
The Holy Bible teaches that the age we currently live is an age of grace; that we are no longer under the law of the nation of Israel:
For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. Ephesians 2:14,15
But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law. Galatians 5:18
However, this grace does not include sins such as sexual immorality:
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11
or faith outside of Christ:
Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." Act 4:12
Let me insert here that the first half of the above paragraph on sexual immorality once included me, but by repentance and turning away from this filth to trust in the Lord Jesus I was washed, sanctified, and justified. One concept you must understand is that NO ONE is righteous before God on his own account. Rather, it is Christ's righteousness that covers our sins by faith in Him. As Scripture makes perfectly clear:
The righteous will live by faith. Galatians 3-11
Therefore, according to the Good Book, you fall into only one of two categories before God - righteous or wicked. There's no bell curve and if you aren't clothed in Christ's righteousness, you are a child of the devil.
If you disagree with this analysis, that's your prerogative; however, don't write me with your opinion without backing it with biblical reference. Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your house or welcome him. Anyone who welcomes him shares in his wicked work. 2 John 1:9-11
The message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is my standard and I won't compromise this faith for family, wealth, status, or life itself.
With all of this in mind, I will give my opinion, backing it with Scripture, as to the living person who is the most intolerant of other religions:
You shall have no other gods before me. "You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. Deuteronomy 5:7-10
Do not tremble, do not be afraid.
Did I not proclaim this and foretell it long ago?
You are my witnesses. Is there any God besides me?
No, there is no other Rock; I know not one. Isaiah 44:8
I am the LORD, and there is no other;
apart from me there is no God.
I will strengthen you,
though you have not acknowledged me,
so that from the rising of the sun
to the place of its setting
men may know there is none besides me.
I am the LORD, and there is no other. Isaiah 45:5,6
"I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him." John 14:6, 7
The person alive today who is more intolerant of any religion outside of Christianity or apostasy within Christianity is the incarnate Word, Jesus Christ himself, of whom the Scriptures so faithfully testify -
I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades. Revelation 1:18
Now who are you going to follow? Are you going to place your trust and faith in a myth taught to you in a secular body, an apostate church, or your own imaginings, or are you going to follow the one sure Word which comes down from God who loves you so much that he sent his only begotten Son to die in your stead - granting you righteousness in place of your life of wickedness. Make your choice with out delay:
For he says, "In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you." I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation. 2 Corinthians 2:6
Tolerance for non-biblical heresies within the church such as homosexuality or extra-religio acceptance (such as islam) is not a virtue, but rather a capitulation of held beliefs or a lack of such beliefs. Outside of Christ Jesus "tolerance is dead."
Please send me a line, I would love to hear from you: BumbleBee@Wonderful1.com.
Having said the above, I will say that I do believe in tolerance within Christian parameters. Some biblical issues will never be resolved until Christ returns. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 1 Corinthians 13:9, 10. But the basic tenets of the faith - that Christ Jesus was physically manifest on Earth, that he was crucified for our sins, and that he was physically resurrected are not even debatable. Also, as stated above, the Holy Bible clearly states that repentance of sins and a turning away from them is necessary proof of acceptance of Christ into one's life. So then, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the vision from heaven. First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds. Acts 26:19, 20.