“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it. Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Matthew 22:37-40 (NIV)
It’s Sunday! Good morning, beloved, and welcome to another edition of Sunday Morning Word. Today’s poem comes from Mariah Ivey, entitled, “Separate Gods.” I wonder what Mariah had in mind when she titled this poem. There is only one God, and we all worship him the same way, right?
Do all of the Baptists, Methodist, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Episcopalians, etc. worship the same way, or do they all have different traditions? Ah, there’s that word we never want to hear: tradition. Tradition traps us in a repetitive methodical motion of “doing church” without true teaching. There is no harvest through tradition, there is no producing of good fruit through tradition, and because of tradition, we have divided ourselves into different denominations, each professing to be right, better than the others, yet we claim to worship the same God.
“All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts, They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:44-47).
We should take some lessons from the church in Acts. They communed and came together in fellowshiped together daily, they gave to each other according to his need, they prayed, they praised and worshiped God, they had love in their hearts, and they grew by the thousands daily.
What happened to us? With all of these Christian denominations, no wonder sinners are having a hard time finding the light! When one church is saying doing this is OK, while another condemns you to hell for it; when one church is trying to be like the world to attract people, while another is sitting high and mighty, turning away those who are lost because they don’t look exactly like the masks the people of the church wear; when one church says anyone who has an ear to hear, let them come, while another church says you can be saved based on Christian experience, no wonder people would rather not be bothered. They’re confused!
It’s time we get it together. We are ONE body of Christ, baptized by ONE Spirit.