#DoNotBeDuped, #Foolishness, #UnBiblical, #NewAge?

Another reason Ravi Zacharias is so helpful.  Don’t be duped by “New Age” thinking:

See the New Age spirituality for what it is; a systematic methodology of appealing to a cultural mindset that despises certain things and that follows a reductionistic approach that actually distorts any claimant to truth that differs from those the New Spirituality endorses in order to make them all say the same thing.  This is the goal of the New Spirituality.  Bring everything to the same level.  There is a clear agenda.  In their deep prejudice against Christianity, advocates of the New Spirituality malign the Christ of history in order to remake him into an image that is consistent with their ideas. (Ravi Zacharias, Why Jesus, page 209-210)

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This Can’t End Well

I am reading a book by Ravi Zacharias right now called Why Jesus.  It is a stunning read of his own journey.  Growing up in India around those who embraced eastern spirituality, then moving to the west to see us marry capitalism and spirituality by marketing eastern spirituality to make money, then to return home and see the eastern spirituality of his homeland failing people leaving them lacking and searching for truth still.  I recommend this book to any person who has ever sought truth, or seeking truth now.  He makes a stunning comparison on page 112 about our situation in the West at the moment:

I remember as a new Christian walking into a church in Canada and listening to a hymn I had never heard before, a hymn entitled, “Himself.”

Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord

Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word

Once His gifts I wanted, Now the Giver own

Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone.

The hymn was written by the well-known churchman and theologian Albert B. Simpson (1843-1919).  The first time I heard it I thought to myself, “How profound!  How God-centered and how refreshing that the spiritual journey is to move one from focusing on the benefits of belief to the great romance and beauty of knowing the Author and Giver of life!”  Heaven, if it means anything, will mean being in the presence of the Ultimate Being, not being the ultimate.

Today’s spirituality actually would reverse the thought to:

Once it was the Lord, Now it is the blessing

Once it was His Word, Now is it the feeling

Once it was the Giver, Now the gifts I own

Once I sought Himself, Now it is the healing and my “self” alone.

Don’t you find it interesting that is these same eastern spiritual thoughts Ravi grew up with that are now leaving his people lacking in their search for truth?  Funny how the west is now mass marketing these things to us to make a profit.  This can’t end well.

You Have More In Common With Terrorist’s Than You Think

I am a Calvinist.  This means I am into “ism’s.”  Does this make me a fool?  To some it does.  To some, identifying yourself along with any “ism” is to allow yourself to be brainwashed by another’s ideology rather than allowing your own mind to govern your beliefs.  Is this the case?  Of course not, at least not with me.  I used my mind to study, examine, and embrace the system of belief known as Calvinism.  No system was shoved down my throat, I did not grow up in this tradition, and was against when I became a Christian for 2 years.  I am not brainwashed, I don’t think I am a fool, and I am not allowing another’s ideology to govern my mind.

I wonder though, why do so many people hate “ism’s?”  Couldn’t each belief be classified into some kind of an “ism?”  Possibly.  But more is at stake in this conversation than most think.  Those who are against ism’s beware – you have more in common with terrorist’s then you think.

Existentialist’s don’t want to the boxed into an “ism”…nor do postmodernists.  The person who isn’t into “isms” gives himself the liberty to conveniently dismiss anything he doesn’t like or agree with as an “ism,” which by his definition does not deserve to be taken seriously, while his own beliefs are defended against being considered an “ism.”  Giving yourself the privilege of destroying other positions while parking your own position in an unidentifiable location is a form of linguistic terrorism. (Ravi Zacharias, Why Jesus, page 14)

Faith vs. Reason? Or Faith & Reason?

Are faith and reason separate?  Are they two distinct, un-overlapping, different positions one can hold to in this world?  Or are they two sides of the coin of man’s experience in this life?  To me, the latter is the most truthful and honest option.  How then can these two seemingly different realities work in tandem and meet each other without damaging the nature and substance of the other?  Ravi Zacharias helps us out:

God has put enough into this world to make faith in Him a most reasonable thing, but He has left enough out to make it impossible to live by reason alone. (Why Jesus, Introduction, page XVI)

To further impress this Paul says to Agrippa in Acts 26:25

I am not out of my mind, most excellent Festus, but I am speaking true and rational words.

What is Paul mean by saying he is speaking “true and rational words?”  It means that the gospel of Jesus Christ is both true and rational.  In other words, if one is seeking to know true reason, rationality, and truth one will ultimately land on and embrace the gospel.