Armodoxy for Today: Religious Scams
We have all become familiar with this word, scam, though we may be unaware as to how prevalent it is in our lives. We have heard of Internet scams, financial scams, email and telephone scams, and try to exercise some degree of caution against them. Banks, financial institutions, even health care foundations issue warning about the threat of being scammed. But when it comes to religious scams, we are certain that it could never happen to us. After all, we think, I’m a Christian, born and raised a Christian, and I know what I believe to be true. In that statement is the weakest link in what protects us from religious scams.
These days we have everyone and their uncle professing authority in all matters concerning Christ, Christian faith and Christianity. Quote a few Bible verses and do it loud enough on a social media account, and anyone can proclaim just about anything with some degree of authority by virtue of the platform. Fake news gets tagged; but anything goes when it comes to religion, especially Christianity. With wars and talk of wars escalating, the field is open for end-of-world predictions that have to do with a battle called Armageddon.
Because religion is a personal matter, people don’t really care to know the background story. For instance, the Armenian Church, being an Apostolic Church, that is from the time of the Apostles, has a unique spot in the Christian world and speaks with authority when it comes to Christian concepts and dogma. Still, it’s easier for people to believe what they want, as hideous as things may be, rather than educating oneself.
So, in the interest of passing along some information which you may not know, here are a few things to keep in mind as you read through the some of scary predictions which are being made in the name of Christ and Christianity.
The Old Testament is not salvific. Jesus Christ is the fulfilment of the law and the profits.
Jesus is the Son of God and therefore His ethnicity transcends our understanding of ethnicity. He belongs equally to everyone and to all ethnic groups.
The word Israel means the “people of God.” After baptism, we proclaim the child as a member of the “New Israel” which is not to say they belong to the Jewish state in the Middle East.
Jesus will return. His return is imminent, but it has been imminent since the 1st century. For this reason, Jesus says, “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36)
The location of Jesus’ return is not disclosed. It’s his business. He asks us to love and care, not to predict places. Despite what you have read or heard, if Jesus decides he wants to come back in Puerto Rico or in Armenia, you can site all the pages in the Bible and all the preachers that you’ve heard, he doesn’t have to go by those rules. Again, He asks us to love and care, not to predict places.
Anyone who predicts Jesus’ return on a specific date or place is running a scam.
The Book of Revelation was written by St. John, one of the 12 disciples. He was imprisoned on an island writing to the Christian’s of the time. He wrote in a code that they, the people of the time, would understand. The message is simply: endure the sufferings and persecution, God’s victory is guaranteed in the end.
Who goes to Heaven is God’s business. Ours is to love and care for one another and leave the rest to God. Our prayer is: Lord have mercy.
These are just a few items I wanted to share with you considering all the scary religious misinformation that’s being pumped out in the name of Christianity. There’s much more and that’s why we speak about the Apostolic Evangelism, and hope you follow the ancient teachings.
Pray the Prayer that our Lord Jesus taught us: Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.