Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The "Feel Good" Gospel

There are many churches and preachers out there promoting the "feel good" gospel. Some of them are even mega-churches. They shy away from controversial issues such as abortion, homosexuality, morality, etc . It reminds me of the "I'm OK, You're OK" book and movement in the 70's. The lines between right and wrong are blurry; I'm a good person and you're a good person and the way we live our lives matters little. What matters is that we believe in Jesus. Jesus wants us to be happy and prosperous.
  These preachers gather large crowds not because they are preaching the truth, but because they are preaching what people want to hear. People don't want to hear about repentance and sacrifice; about changing their lives; about following Jesus words in the revealed Word of God, the Bible. In other words, they don't want the cross, only the Resurrection. And they think that everyone except the very, very evil people like Osama Binladen, is going to Heaven because God loves us. They don't want the truth.
  But St. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 1:17:  "For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel--not with wordy "wisdom," however, lest the cross of Christ be rendered void of its meaning!"
  Jesus said "He who will not take up his cross and come after me is not worthy of Me. He who seeks only himself brings himself to ruin, whereas he who brings himself to nought for me discovers who he is." (Matthew 10:38-39)  "If a man wishes to come after Me, he must deny his very self, take up his cross, and begin to follow in my footsteps. Whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it." (Matthew 16:24-25)  "Anyone who does not take up his cross and follow Me cannot be my disciple." (Luke 14:27)  This doesn't sound like a "feel good" gospel to me!
  Belief in Jesus is not enough; we are called by Him to follow Him. So beware of those preachers, churches and authors of best sellers who promote the "feel good" gospel. If we examine the lives of the apostles and the early disciples in the Bible or the lives of Christian saints and holy people throughout the ages we will see that their lives were anything but easy.

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