Wednesday, February 13, 2013

What brand of Christian are you?

  • Baptist
  • Pentecostal
  • Catholic
  • LDS
  • Protestant
  • Lutheran
  • Presbyterian
  • Amish
  • Mennonite
  • Methodist
  • Adventist
  • Non-Denominational
 and the list goes on and on without even mentioning the sub-types under each one. 

I have been Pentecostal, Baptist, and Non-Denominational and in all three I found one constant: God. 
Baptist churches are generally quiet and somewhat reserved in respect and reverence to God. 
Pentecostal churches are more free and charismatic to let the God and His spirit move as they will and as the congregation feels led. 
Non- Denominational are also a free and charismatic group of people. 

These descriptions are based on my personal experience in each. 

I realize that each type has their own individual variances but we need to focus on coming together as one body for Christ. Heaven is going to be made up of only Catholics, Pentecostals, or Baptists. I also do not picture Heaven divided into section for each belief system. Heaven is going to be everyone worshiping, praising, and glorifying God's name as one body. It is going to amazing because there will not be any of the human factors getting in the way of worship, as they do here on earth. 

We, as Christians, should have the goal of uniting as one body under the title Christian and not worry about the label that is on the sign in front of our church. 

Realistically, I know we are never going to be completely rid of these labels, until Heaven. But we need to work hard to see past them and accept the other beliefs. God has remained the same since He spoke everything into existence and He will remain the same when none of this remains. We must never lose sight of that and we must not let personal feelings, such as church labels, divide the body of Christ. 

I know if you are raised in a reserved church, the thought of things like speaking in tongues or seeing someone slain in the spirit can be unnerving and intimidating. Does that mean they are fake or not of God, no. It just means we are not accustomed to it and are uncomfortable with it. I would like to digress just a moment and touch on these two things, since these are two the big apprehensions people have with charismatic Christianity.  I remember the first time I saw someone speak in tongues, it seemed very strange that someone would just stand up in service and start talking in a strange language, but shortly after they finished someone else got and had the translation from God. This does not occur every service and during the service before and after this event you will feel a strong presence of God.   Being slain the spirit is the same way, there is a really strong presence of God in the service. This also seems strange the first time you see this, but it is a great experience when it happens to you. It is such a peaceful communion with God and His will completely blocks out the rest of the world and you are solely focused on Him. There is nothing at all wrong with this, from first hand experience. 

In conclusion, I want to say that we should not brand anyone based on a label, especially a fellow Christian. Our job is to spread the word of God to the world working as one body for God. We should focus on being a good Christian and not the brand of Christianity that we are part of. If we are unsure about any beliefs study and even ask the pastor of that church to talk with you about their beliefs and practices. You don't have to convert, but you may learn something new. 

Mark 16:17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues;

Acts 2:4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

Matthew 28:19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,