Thursday, June 08, 2006

Email Theology?
I get lots of “religious” emails from well meaning friends and co-workers, and once in a while they are pretty good, but most of them are sappy, guilt manipulating, and some are downright heretical.

Here is an example from an email that I received this evening, "And you shall surely achieve all your goals this year. For the remaining months of the year, all your agonies will be diverted and victory and prosperity will be incoming in abundance. Today God has confirmed the end of your sufferings sorrows and pains because HE that sits on the throne has remembered you. He has taken away the hardships and given you JOY"

Now unless the person who sent this is a prophet (and they are not), than there is no way they can honestly say anything like that to a fellow Christian. The statement is VERY un-Scriptural. The Scriptures tell us that if we are the children of God, than one thing that we can count on in this life is suffering. But the good thing is the Holy Spirit is with us and by the Spirit we can (and will) overcome trials, temptations and sufferings.

And in nothing terrified by your adversaries: which is to them an evident token of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that of God. For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake… (Phil. 1:28-29)

And sent Timotheus, our brother, and minister of God, and our fellow labourer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith: That no man should be moved by these afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto. For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know. (1 Thess. 3:2-4)

So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure: Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer… (2 Thess. 1:4-5)

For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. (1 Tim 4:10)

It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him: If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us… (2 Tim 2:11-12)

There are many more verses that could be added to the list above.
I hate to throw cold water on the things in that email, but many of these "religious” emails (like the one quoted above) that get passed around on the internet are not biblical and some of them are out and out heretical. The statement above is a good example of a very unbiblical email that is getting passed around. While it may give us warm fuzzes inside when we read it, it is something that we can not say to someone unless we are a prophet from God. And not just that, it directly contradicts much of what we read in the Scriptures about the suffering and persecution that those who follow Christ will have to endure in this life.

Coram Deo,

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