People think that being on the membership rolls of a church or belonging to some denomination is enough to ensure their spiritual health and salvation. We tend to believe that being conditioned by rituals and by drinking in sacraments that we shall be sanctified as full-fledged children of God with our eternal salvation assured, but those of us who think this are inebriated on the spurious wine of false religion, a self-intoxicating, long fermented pseudo-spiritual brew expressly concocted for the purposes of making mankind drunk and out of touch with God, denying people all true spiritual food and drink, or any of the things of sober knowledge which provide the real nourishment and tend to the liberal and eternal life found only in Christ and His body. Even Christians who know better or should know better, continue in this drunken stupor of ‘Mystery Babylon’, stumbling along weak in faith and subject to one crisis of faith after another. We continue in this condition because it is the easy way. The world offers no resistance to false religion; they are in collusion. We justify it though it has no lasting goodness for our spirit, because it has been promoted and handed down from generation to generation since ancient times. All the while Christians under the spell of ‘Mystery Babylon’ (false religion generally speaking) do not know they are withering away, dying of sclerosis, heart disease, while their faith faints away from malnutrition. …  




















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Dare to

be Different -

of the

by Terry Smith  


God knows we all have a deep rooted drive to belong - somewhere, somehow. No matter how small a corner or how puny a slice, we want to be included. We want the security of a routine to which we can be joined with others. It is not good to be alone. How can we love one another if we are not with one another? This is the natural way and the godly way. We are social creatures by nature therefore it is not good, natural or healthy for man to be alone. The trouble is we join things for the wrong reason and we join ourselves to wrong things, just out of the urge to belong and for the convenience we are willing to belong to almost anything just so we have someplace where we belong: the marines, a card club, a charitable organization, Red Sox Nation, a band of hoodlums, even a church.

When we join a church for personal reasons just to belong to something, and not because God wills it, we do ourselves a great injustice that may have long lasting detrimental effects. When we do this we are acting in a very worldly manner and anything of the world, we are informed by the Word, is at enmity with God; or, in other words, an enemy of God’s. The Bible tells us that we must come out from among them (the people, places and things of the world to which we have joined ourselves) and be separate. This is the essence and purest meaning of “Church”: The Separated Ones. Here is one of the greatest priorities and processes to be undergone by new born Christians. A new born Christian must allow God to detach them from the world. It is a process that implies a work of extrication by the Holy Spirit working together with Jesus Christ to free us from the quick sand of this worldly life into which we are first born.

We cannot and should not be followers of the World, but we must be followers of Christ, who said; “If the world hates me it will surely hate you.” Come out of the world, if for no other reason than that it hates you; because if you  are Christ’s it will hate you, though Satan will try to convince you it is your friend and that you can be taught lessons of life from it and co-exist just fine with it. But the Christian, if he is to realize his heritage in Christ, must be freed from his instinctive drive to be part of the world; i.e. to belong. Helping one another battle against the seductive call of the world to woo us back to her arms with sweet kisses, after getting free of its lure, should be one of the continuing zealous missions of any church and can be counted on as a sign of true Christian fellowship. The conduct of this mission should not always be pleasant, contrary to what the flimsy, whimsical church spirit of modern evangelicalism likes to teach. God's word says openly, "Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.” 2 Cor. 6. 17and, " ... know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God." James 4.4 If we cannot be friends with this world, then we certainly cannot be accepted by the world, and we surely are not supposed to be like it. The very nature of the words like enemy and touch not and be separated means being extricated and staying extricated from the world is a contentious thing fought for and battled against. There is a time for everything: war and peace, embracing and refraining from embracing.


We are Strangers in a Strange Land

As a people, bought and paid for by Christ's shed blood, Christians should in no way belong to this world. The gospel of Jesus Christ is foreign to the gospel of the world. Jesus told this to his disciples plainly:

"If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you." John 15.19 and, "I have given them thy word [Father]; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world." John 17.14 As the obligatory stranger of countless cowboy movies who is questioned by the suspicious sheriff about his intentions in town, our reply to the world is that we are "just passin' through". We are not of this world but God has sent us into it to be witnesses of a far greater world that is within us now, and is promised when Jesus calls us to the marriage supper of the Lamb in heaven.

The Christian life is intended to be like Abraham's faith, who as the father of those who believe, was never welcomed or accepted by this world. When God told Abraham to settle in Canaan nothing about it was hospitable. Before him lay Egypt, behind him was Babylon, on the right was the sea, and to the left was Sodom and Gomorrah. Around him were a multitude of confederated hostile sheiks against whom he was forced to make war. He owned no land, not even a burial plot, and his entire household, over 300 armed men with families and live stock, lived in tents. All he had was the promise of God that he would someday see the heavenly home, "for he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God."  This city is not made with hammers and saws and plume lines held by the hands of men, but is built by God’s hands alone.

Like Abraham, who dwelt in tents waiting for the promise, we modern sojourners must reckon that we live our spiritual lives in ethereal mobile homes. We are temps on our jobs and renters waiting to move into our home currently under construction in heaven. We know this world is a temporary abode, fragile, having no anchor or foundation in eternal life. And best of all - a mobile home can be removed from its site in a moment's notice - in the twinkling of an eye - one might say. But very few of us want to forego belonging to the world to become strangers in a strange land, sojourners "just passin' through", living in ‘mobile homes’ with no solid foundation on earth with dubious rubber tires liable to flats and blowouts and guaranteed to wear out.

We need to "dare to be different." All the greats of faith knew they were just passin' through. As it tells in Hebrews, "These [great people of faith] all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth." Let us embrace the fact that we are "strangers and pilgrims". First and foremost we need to realize that part of our inheritance is that we now belong to God and are members of His family and belong as residents to the Kingdom of God. We must realize that this is not a promise of a future existence in paradise, but a reality this very moment and very real part of our daily existence in Christ.


We Look for an Inheritance

We can afford to be different because we have an inheritance that the world cannot share. God has promised that our pilgrimage will end with us inheriting a wonderful mansion, rich beyond our wildest dreams. "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." 1 Cor. 2.9 But the Spirit has told us. When our time in the ‘trailer park’ is up, and our inheritance comes in, we shall dwell in a mansion along the heavenly streets of gold. So let us revel in the promise that makes us different. Remember Jesus' promise to His pilgrims, "In my father's house are many mansions: if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you." John 14:1 Believe it! Get all excited Tell everybody! Compared to the inheritance that Christians have coming, this world, with its "Graceland", Buckingham Palace, and Taj Mahal, is nothing more than a crummy mobile home in a shabby little trailer park.  We can shout it from the roof tops - When the trumpet blast is heard it will be goodbye trailer park, hello mansion on those streets of gold!


This song from the early 1970's says it exactly right,

I can't wait to see Jesus

And walk those streets of gold.

I can't wait to check into my mansion

And get my sleepin ' bag unrolled.


Tell me how it’s gonna be

Read it from the Bible again!

I can't wait to see Jesus

'Cause Jesus is comin' again!


We Must Accept It: We Are Strangers Here

Why not dare to be different, brothers and sisters, especially since we know we have a mansion waiting for us. Our inheritance is near. And we owe it to the executor of our inheritance, Jesus, to act different, because his blood makes us different. There are things we should do while we wait. We can lay up a treasure in our heavenly mansion that neither "rust, nor moth, nor corruption, or thieves" of this world can rob or destroy. Jesus warns His Church not to put too much time or effort into the affairs of this world, or invest too much expense into our "mobile homes". We are spiritual beings in a carnal world; let us take care of spiritual things first. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and then all these things shall be added unto you." As the Scriptures teach, we have been bought from all iniquity so that God could "purify unto Himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works." Titus 2.14 So let us preach Jesus "in season and out of season". To preach righteousness in our homes and to the people whom God sends us is to be totally out of step with the 'anything goes' theology of the world. God is our anchor. He, and only He, is the same today as He was yesterday, and will be tomorrow. Jesus said that, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away." Mark 13.31 How much more shall this Antichrist world pass into oblivion some day. We do not want to be found in it. Dare to look for an heavenly home. Dare to preach righteousness. Dare to love one another for there is no love without truth which is mixed with God's mercy. Be as the greats of faith and live as "strangers and pilgrims" in this life. Be a stranger in a strange land.