Last night I had a very disturbing dream. Some dreams are forgotten instantly, others stick with you. This one, I can’t seem to shake.
The first scene was at a church (I do not recall which one, and it did not seem familiar), and the pastor was giving a rather inspiring message. Two married men were seated, each holding a Bible and looking at it with confusion and disgust. They were married to each other.
The pastor realized this, and I could see he was torn about whether to continue on with his message, or tone it down so as not to offend the two married men. He decided to risk offense, and went on with his message. The married men stormed out of the church, leaving the Bibles behind.
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. (Galatians 1:6, 7 NIV)
The next scene of my dream was probably what is the most saddening: Another church, another time. Walking into the youth room, I discover that the students had written their own “Bible” to create a “gospel” that was more relevant to their lifestyles – to allow them to do anything they desired to do. Devoid of the true Gospel of Christ. On the table lay a Bible that had been completely ripped apart and replaced with handwritten pages of pop culture doctrine and lyrics from secular music. Because they refused to devote themselves to the commandments of Jesus.
You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. “A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” I am confident in the Lord that you will take no other view. The one who is throwing you into confusion, whoever that may be, will have to pay the penalty. (Galatians 5:7-10 NIV)
My heart ached at this discovery. Why would anyone want to leave the protection and love that Jesus offered? Why would they want to create their own Bible? Their own gospel? Their own religion? Because what the world offered was better?
You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. (Galatians 5:13 NIV)
So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:16-21 NIV)
Is what the world offers truly better than what Christ offers? Is that why these guest stars in my dream were so convinced that they could do life better without Jesus? That they could do it on their own?
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. (Galatians 5:22-26 NIV)
I do not mean for this to be an anti-(anything) type of post. Because it’s not.
I cannot help what I dream about.
I am not against the world. I am just not of the world.
I have merely been pondering this in great depth today.
What is our generation coming to that it wants to push Jesus out of it completely?