ARE WE TEACHING THE TRADITIONS OF MEN OR GOD?

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By: Theophilus Izobofolo

Where do most churches get their teachings and practices from? Most of their church members assume that they come from the Bible. But do they?

Jesus commanded His apostles to teach others exactly what He had taught them, He said, “Teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:20). And to continue in His words: “If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed” (John 8:31).

He condemned the replacement of God’s commandments by human reasoning and the traditions of men. Speaking to the Pharisees, Jewish religious leaders of His day, He said: “For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men…All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition” (Mark 7:8-9).

Like Jesus, the apostles consistently taught obedience to God’s word. Peter and the other apostles risked their lives to make it clear that “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).

Following Christ’s example, Paul warned the Colossians not to accept traditions as substitutes for the commandments of God: “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

Unfortunately, we are in a generation that Jesus Christ described as a “faithless and perverse generation” (Matthew 17:17), and which Apostle Paul called, “A crooked and perverse nation” (Philippians 2:15; Deuteronomy 32:5).

A generation that has perverted and twisted every written word of God; a generation that has “changed the truth of God into a lie” (Romans 1:25). A generation where the Sorcerers, the Magicians and the Fortune-tellers has build their own churches, prayer houses and deliverance ministries, all in the name of Christianity.

A generation where business fall-outs, school drop-outs and fraudulent people has taken the pulpits as church general overseers and general superintendents. A generation where almost everyone is a Christian and yet crimes and evils acts are on the highest level.

A generation that has over 37 million different denominational churches and yet each of these churches has their own different teachings and doctrines.

Surely, we are living in an age where Christians are following make-up “stories”, “visions” and “revelations” that other people claim to have seen or received (Matthew 24:5,23-26), and in an age where denominational churches follow doctrines of their General Overseer (Matthew 15:9) rather than the doctrine of Christ (2 John 1:9, 10; Acts 2:42).

I have a mind to say that a great number of doctrines, as seen in many these churches, are mere human opinions. But honest and sincere, but gullible men and women who believe everything are being led astray. This is the sad aspect of it. These ones need to search their Scripture to find out for themselves whether what they practice is right or wrong (Acts 17:11).

Jesus clearly stated that Christians must submit to the will of God because the word of God is true at all times. “Thy word is truth” (John 17:17; 2Tim. 3:16, 17). During Christ’s last prayer on earth for His disciples, He said, “I have given them thy word”, “…and they have kept thy word” (John 17: 14, 6).

Therefore, you can’t be a Christian without keeping God’s word, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6: 46; Titus 1: 16). Jesus plainly declared that “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).

What does that mean? True Christians must be subject to God’s will. They will obey God’s word even if it brings them “problems” or severe persecution! As you know, the early Christians took their very lives in their hands when they followed Jesus and the original apostles.

Remember, for our service to be approved by God, we must know God and obey the gospel of His son, Jesus Christ (2 Thessalonians 1:8, 9). There are almost two billion people in the world today who identify themselves with Christianity, yet how many of them are truly following the teachings of Christ?

In Matthew 15:1-9, 13, 14, our service to God is in vain if we follow man-made rules or traditions that differ from God’s commands. Since all God’s commands are in the Scriptures, it follows that any rule that differs from the Scriptures must be human in origin and following such human doctrines condemns both the teachers and their followers (Matthew 7:21-23).

Where do most churches get their teachings and practices from? Most of their church members assume that they come from the Bible. But do they?

Jesus commanded His apostles to teach others exactly what He had taught them, He said, “Teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Matthew 28:20). And to continue in His words: “If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed” (John 8:31).

He condemned the replacement of God’s commandments by human reasoning and the traditions of men. Speaking to the Pharisees, Jewish religious leaders of His day, He said: “For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men…All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition” (Mark 7:8-9).

Like Jesus, the apostles consistently taught obedience to God’s word. Peter and the other apostles risked their lives to make it clear that “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).

Following Christ’s example, Paul warned the Colossians not to accept traditions as substitutes for the commandments of God: “Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

Unfortunately, we are in a generation that Jesus Christ described as a “faithless and perverse generation” (Matthew 17:17), and which Apostle Paul called, “A crooked and perverse nation” (Philippians 2:15; Deuteronomy 32:5).

A generation that has perverted and twisted every written word of God; a generation that has “changed the truth of God into a lie” (Romans 1:25). A generation where the Sorcerers, the Magicians and the Fortune-tellers has build their own churches, prayer houses and deliverance ministries, all in the name of Christianity.

A generation where business fall-outs, school drop-outs and fraudulent people has taken the pulpits as church general overseers and general superintendents. A generation where almost everyone is a Christian and yet crimes and evils acts are on the highest level.

A generation that has over 37 million different denominational churches and yet each of these churches has their own different teachings and doctrines.

Surely, we are living in an age where Christians are following make-up “stories”, “visions” and “revelations” that other people claim to have seen or received (Matthew 24:5,23-26), and in an age where denominational churches follow doctrines of their General Overseer (Matthew 15:9) rather than the doctrine of Christ (2 John 1:9, 10; Acts 2:42).

I have a mind to say that a great number of doctrines, as seen in many these churches, are mere human opinions. But honest and sincere, but gullible men and women who believe everything are being led astray. This is the sad aspect of it. These ones need to search their Scripture to find out for themselves whether what they practice is right or wrong (Acts 17:11).

Jesus clearly stated that Christians must submit to the will of God because the word of God is true at all times. “Thy word is truth” (John 17:17; 2Tim. 3:16, 17). During Christ’s last prayer on earth for His disciples, He said, “I have given them thy word”, “…and they have kept thy word” (John 17: 14, 6).

Therefore, you can’t be a Christian without keeping God’s word, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6: 46; Titus 1: 16). Jesus plainly declared that “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).

What does that mean? True Christians must be subject to God’s will. They will obey God’s word even if it brings them “problems” or severe persecution! As you know, the early Christians took their very lives in their hands when they followed Jesus and the original apostles.

Remember, for our service to be approved by God, we must know God and obey the gospel of His son, Jesus Christ (2 Thessalonians 1:8, 9). There are almost two billion people in the world today who identify themselves with Christianity, yet how many of them are truly following the teachings of Christ?

In Matthew 15:1-9, 13, 14, our service to God is in vain if we follow man-made rules or traditions that differ from God’s commands. Since all God’s commands are in the Scriptures, it follows that any rule that differs from the Scriptures must be human in origin and following such human doctrines condemns both the teachers and their followers (Matthew 7:21-23).

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