Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Human Religion and Veiling the Truth

Luke 11:52

Because men, in their sin natures, do not want to be ruled by God they do all in their power to cover-up the truth about God.  The evident truth in our own consciousness regarding the special and intelligent creation of the Universe by Almighty God has been covered over by man’s arbitrarily imagined philosophical materialism in forms such as pagan polytheism (the deification of ideas), and modern evolutionary scientism.  Maybe in the future I can address that issue.  In this brief article, I want to speak about how man-made pseudo-christianity has veiled the Bible.  The religious power brokers have refused to enter into the God-given truth and they have constructed an apparatus to hinder you from entering.

In Luke 11 the Lord Jesus was not rebuking those afar off and obviously contrary to the Bible, the Word of God; Jesus was rebuking those that claimed to know and believe the Bible and represent God.  The closer a lie is to resembling the truth the more dangerous it is.  In the statement by the Lord Jesus we are speaking of in Luke 11:52…

“Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.”

…the lawyers mentioned are not practitioners of civil or criminal law, as we might think today, but practitioners in the laws and teachings of Judiasm.  If you assume that Judiasm and the Law of God (the Old Testament Scriptures, called the Torah by the Jews) are one and the same you would be wrong.  The key of knowledge is a figure of speech for the means of knowledge.  Jesus had already spoken of the means of knowledge in Luke 11:28 where He states, “…blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.”  You want the truth? Hear the Word of God—take God at His word, and do what God says.  The following event and exchange between the religious leaders and the Lord Jesus recorded in Matthew 15:1-9 is a case in point, illustrating this veiling of the truth.  You can read that here

The scribes and Pharisees complained to Jesus that His disciples were eating without washing their hands.  This was not hand washing for hygiene, but as a religious rite.  Here is the problem, the Pharisees appealed to the tradition of the fathers and not to the Bible directly for authority.  These men were appealing to the fathers—the foregoing generations of Judiastic teachers (Rabbis).  The Lord brought them up short, rebuked them, and exposed the wickedness of their hearts, asking, “Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?”  Jesus continues by giving an example of how they had superimposed man-made tradition over the Bible and hid the truth from men.  The Law of God commanded that a man was to honour mother and father and the man that cursed his mother and father was guilty of death.  But the ‘fathers’ had imposed a tradition which said that if a man has goods by which he should be looking after his aged parents in their need but claims those goods as a future gift to God he is free from obligation, leaving his parents in poverty.  What is the source of this self-righteous rebellion?  Their hearts were far from God, regardless of how much they said they honoured God.  They were GUILTY of the SIN of teaching for “doctrines the commandments of men.”

When you superimpose anything over the Bible you take away the key of knowledge.  Said another way, you veil the truth from people.  In my experience what most people know about Christianity comes from Roman Catholicism and, its off-spring, Protestantism.  This is so heart breaking because these large religious groups, have departed from the Bible (a long, long, long, time ago) and have taken away the key of knowledge by their traditions, which is the teachings of the (so-called) “church fathers.”  That is why they speak of Catholic Tradition or Christian Tradition.  God warns us about the traditions of men… “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” (Col. 2:8)  The history of man’s philosophizing and religion-izing has long proven itself to be a worthless exercise where men are “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (2Tim. 3:7)

For your own eternal good, please, do not abdicate your personal responsibility to know and believe the truth to another man, or group of men—priests, scholars, clergy, etc.  Set aside the commentators, ‘experts,’ scholars, creeds, traditions, catechisms, etc. and study the Bible directly.  I am not inciting you to make your own religion.  There are too many of those now.  Neither is the point rebellion against organized religion.  The point is that you would not allow yourself or others to superimpose a tradition over the Bible so as to hide what God has said.  I appeal to you to go directly to the Bible yourself and take God at His word according to the normal laws of language.  You may have religious and family loyalties that would attempt to bar you from this.  You may have religious prejudices that would attempt to bar you from doing this.  You may have vested interests that would be threatened by doing this.  Well, you have to decide if those things are worth your soul.

“For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matt. 16:26)

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