A common accusation against Christianity is that it is exclusive (although no one seems to make that accusation against Judaism or Islam [1]). On the contrary, Jesus said he would accept anyone who came to him. But there’s the rub: “Jesus said”. We approach Jesus on his terms, not ours.

To be a Christian is to be a servant of Jesus of Nazareth. If Jesus is master, his word will rule our lives; which is fair, as he is full deity [2]. Eventually, his word – the Bible – will conflict with what we naturally want or think is right. So if the God’s word says A, B, and C, then Christians will bring their beliefs into line with what it says.

This is the point where people think that Christians are exclusive, because they assert what the Bible – what God – asserts is right or wrong [3]. When Christians say that desires and traits such as homosexuality, greed, cowardice and pride are wrong and should be resisted, people say that Christians are intolerant. You don’t hear that accusation that when Christians say that forgiving your enemies and being honest and trustworthy in all your relationships are right and good. Likewise, people may think that Christians are old fashioned by asserting that the Bible says not to have sex until you’re married, and then only with your spouse. They don’t say that Christians are being exclusive. Yet the one assertion is on the same basis as the others: the Bible says so. The Bible is God’s word, and God is the boss.

This doesn’t mean that Christians always like having Jesus in charge. It’s uncomfortable, inconvenient and a continuing struggle to turn away from what we naturally want to do, from what we feel is natural and right, and submit to God’s word.

There is only one requirement to be a Christian: let God rule your life [4].

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Footnotes

[1] This is perhaps because attacking Judaism isn’t politically correct, especially after the Holocaust, and the fear of attacking Islam of accusations of intolerance or of being attacked oneself; as in the popular mind Islam is less forgiving and more militant than any other belief system – except perhaps militant atheism.

[2] Despite the claims of many to the contrary, but correct hermeneutics and accurate exegesis unmistakeably indicate that Jesus is both full deity and full humanity.

[3] Some who claim to be Christians say that some things the Bible asserts are wrong; the things that their contemporary society says is wrong.

[4] Of course, this will lead to arguments about who is God and what interpretation is correct. That isn’t the topic of this conceptual word splash, and many others have already done it so well that there’s no need to do it again.

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