A Dangerous Pursuit
Genuine Christianity is meant to bring true freedom; Christianity as a religion often brings nothing but condemnation.
"There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus …"
“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death." (Romans 8:1a,2)
How to Kill Mercy in the Name of Jesus
1. Add to Scripture (Matthew 12:2)
The Pharisees thought their interpretation of Sabbath law was equal to the Law itself. How blind!
Lesson: Our interpretation of Scripture is not Scripture.
"For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book"
2. Subtract from Scripture (Matthew 12:3, 5, 7)
Selective Scripture reading is the key ingredient of every heresy. "Have you not read ...", "If you had known what this means ..."
Lesson: Let Scripture bear upon Scripture
"For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God."
"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work."
(2 Timothy 3:16-17)
3. Invert Jesus (Matthew 12:6)
Corrupt Christianity doesn't ignore Jesus, it merely puts him underfoot. It subjects Jesus to so much interpretation that He can’t be recognized.
Lesson: Christ must have the final say.
"Yet I say to you that in this place there is One greater than the temple."
“For the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”
Mercy Triumphs Over Judgment
"For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."
New King James Version (NKJV)
1 At that time Jesus went through the grain fields on the Sabbath. And His disciples were hungry, and began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. 2 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said to Him, “Look, Your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath!”
3 But He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him: 4 how he entered the house of God and ate the showbread which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? 5 Or have you not read in the law that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath, and are blameless? 6 Yet I say to you that in this place there is One greater than the temple. 7 But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”