New Age Pharisees

I am a Christian. This usually comes as a surprise to most people, which is kind of upsetting for me. They say it’s because I’m “too cool” or something. Meaning, I’m not self-righteous and shoving the bible down people’s throats. I also swear like a sailor when I am playing video games, smoke cigarettes, and I am an advocate for marijuana. But the upsetting part is that people think that being a Christian means you think you are better than everyone, know everything, and are aggressive with your beliefs.

I’m extremely aggressive about my beliefs but I don’t really bring God into it. I’m aggressive about equality, the environment, and kindness for the most part. Which are all very Christian things to me.

I’m writing this religious post because I have been reading a book in the Bible called Luke which is in the New Testament and it’s one of the books where one of Jesus’ followers writes about what happened while Jesus was on the Earth. Matthew Mark Luke and John are basically rewrites of each other, but I get something different from each version.

This time, politics have been sizzling in the back of my mind when I read. As I am going along through the verses I think about how if people in power who claim Christianity need to take another look at the Bible. I mean, have they even read it? To be Christian is to try your best to be Christ-like and there are a bunch of people claiming that’s what they are doing with their words, but their actions show something completely different.

The reason I am aggressive with my beliefs and don’t bring God into it is because Jesus literally tells his disciples not to talk about Him to people who don’t want to listen. Yeah, you can bring it up. But when they aren’t having it, you’re supposed to move on.

He sent His disciples out to go spread the Word and He told them that if they go into a house and the people don’t want to listen or deny it, to just shrug it off and move on. Where in the world did Christians get the idea that they have to bash someone in the head with a Bible when Jesus was telling His followers to be chill about it?

Also, if you don’t know the Bible well there are these people called Pharisees and I am just so convinced that the Christian government is a new age version of this. Pharisees are the reason Jesus went ham and started table flipping in a church. He would tell them how stupid they were for being so intent on laws and rules to the point they lost all empathy. That sounds familiar, right?

I read the message so it’s not the fancy thee and thou type Bible, but it gets the message across for me in a way I can keep reading without being bored or confused or frustrated at the writing style. Here are some verses that made me want to write this blog today. Well, I didn’t read all of these chapters today, I just read one a day. But over the last few days this has really been weighing on me.

“He said, “Don’t load yourselves up with equipment. Keep it simple, you are the equipment. And no luxury inns- get a modest place and be content until you leave. If you’re not welcome, leave town. Don’t make a scene. Shrug your shoulders and move on.”

Luke 3:3-5

“Don’t run from suffering, embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way to finding yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you?”

Luke 9:24ish (The message makes it super hard to quote small verses. But that’s the price I pay for being a child about reading)

“When you enter a home, greet the family, ‘Peace,’ If your greeting is received, then it’s a good place to stay. But if it’s not received, take it back and get out. Don’t impose yourself.”

Luke 10:5-6

“You’re hopeless, you Pharisees! Frauds! You love sitting at the head table at church dinners, love preening yourselves in the radiance of public flattery. Frauds! You’re just like unmarked graves. People walk all over that nice  grassy surface, never suspecting the rot and corruption that lies six feet under.”

Luke 11:43-44

“He said, ‘Yes, and I can be even more explicit. You’re hopeless, you religion scholars. You load people down with rules and regulation, nearly breaking their backs, but never lifting a finger to help.’”

Luke 11:46

“Don’t be bluffed into silence or insincerity by the threats of religious bullies. True, they can kill you, but then what can they do? There is nothing they can do to your soul.”

Luke 12:4-5

So basically Jesus is a pretty cool guy and was up in arms about these fake religious freaks who ran the land and He let them know about it. He went completely savage on them. And yet, in this new age, we can’t seem to see past the fallacy of religious government.

Like, I am all for having God in our schools and our country. I’m all for not having abortions, but I still believe in the pro-choice movement and would never want to force someone to have a child they don’t want or can’t handle. I have no idea what I would do if I got pregnant, but I would want the choice to be mine if I kept it or not. I have Christian ideals that I would love to see but I don’t want to force it on people. I want that to be the person’s choice. That is the whole reason we have free-will. Why are we trying to take that away from others? Because we know better? Do we really though?

I am also a skeptic. You might think, how can you be a skeptic and a Christian? It’s because I am an optimistic skeptic and I am aware that there are things of this universe I can’t understand and that anything is possible. I believe in science a whole lot, and I believe in the possibilities of dimensions we could never fathom. I just choose to claim  Christianity in this world of the unknown because of what it has done for my life and how it makes me feel.

I’m not trying to be self-righteous here. I’m not saying that I know better than the religious nuts who have yachts and hot tubs that are probably powered by orphan tears. I’m just saying that there is a god in this country, but it ain’t mine. And our new age Pharisees are making me and my God look bad.

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