“How can you spot a fake? By comparing it with the real thing.” - Pastor Mike
In life we must trust the reality that we perceive, we must take many things at face value. Surely we approach life with some level of skepticism, then we begin accepting and applying because the negativity is too difficult and we refuse to dedicate ourselves to search out truth.
What is Cubic Zirconia? In laymen's terms, cubic zirconia is a synthesized crystal. It is meant to look like diamond. To the naked eye, many jewelers have difficulty distinguishing the difference. That’s the point. They can create a diamond looking material that is less expensive and few enough can tell that they are fake. There is a popularity in cubic zirconia as it is cheap and looks like the real thing. How can you spot the difference between cubic zirconia and diamond? By comparing them. You must start with diamond and compare each to it.
When sudo diamonds can be manufactured, what other realities are fraudulent? When we accept these things and refuse to stand up against fake schemes. As stated earlier, we refuse to dedicate ourselves to search out the truth.
There are some things that we should be more skeptical about. Consider your teachers and leaders. The position is to be respected and held in honor. However, is the individual holding this position respectable and honorable? Are they leading you where you should be lead, doing what is best for you.
Personally, I work in the church and martial arts. I will be speaking from these two perspectives. Let’s reflect on that quote. How can you spot a fake? Which is the real thing? For Taekwondo, that’s easy. There are families of Taekwondo, though each formed to create the headquarters of Kukkiwon. If it is not Kukkiwon, it is not Taekwondo. This is to say there are of course the true families of Taekwondo, these are the Kwons. They remain as the governing bodies and yet recognize and respect Kukkiwon’s position. Wanting to go their own way, some have broken away from Kukkiwon, some are not affiliated at all and have no right to call themselves Taekwondo. How can you spot a fake? They look more like a watered down American Karate, than Taekwondo. There is a cross over in the martial arts, elements in the style that we share, and then there are distinct aspects that set each style apart. Those that are not connected are easily spited because they look nothing like real Taekwondo. Even if they try, they lack adhesion and over time will return to a ridged form. No matter how synthetic, sudo Taekwondo is not real Taekwondo.
This reminds me of something Jesus said, “4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. 7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (John 15:4-7) We must stay connected to the truth, or be lost in complete darkness. The difficulty is in our own laziness. What is more convenient, what is cheaper, what entertains, what is more comfortable and so on.
Are there fake churches? Are we not all praising the same God? Are we not all Christians? The simple answer is no. Let’s all get on the defensive from the start. Well folks, there we have it. This is where many stopped reading. For those who continue with me for a little while longer, let me explain. “How can you spot a fake? By comparing it to the real thing.” The diamond is the original church, it is the marker by which we must compare every other church. How about the pastors, the evangelism, the governance the teaching and so on. Do these line up with scripture? How can one be a Christian if they do not truly know the Christ they are following? Have only heard and now like the concept of Christ? Do you support some of His teachings and ignore some of the less popular ones? Are there controversies and dogmas in your life and church that conflict with scripture that cause you to make exceptions? Have you made the excuse that this select portion alone is only for this time or old, culture, historic, and so forth without any true understanding? Does your church jump right to the super natural without any concept of Theology and Doctrine? Can you say a simple prayer and count yourself a saint? Do we just praise a God far off or does He come and fellowship with us and participate in His own worship?
The truth is, there are so many questions and we have a procedure for our church service. It is orderly symbolic and depending on the church, very traditional. What good is this service if we are just maintaining and if it is professionally done. We utterly destroy our worship trying to put on a performance every week to make it appealing to the congregation. Our worship should be genuine and joyful, not as if we could control, move or conform Him. As organized as we wish to be, we must be ready to be spontaneous to His Spirit. This is not an excuse to invoke ones own adrenaline or try to provoke God. This is just an openness to His movings.
The church is fake however, in playing service every week. Plan the ritual, the organized emotions through song, lights and words. Who is the service for? If Church service was worship, the focus was missed. If it is for teaching, then many pastors are missing the point. Too many are focused on self through speech, worrying about who they will offend, not feeding meat and misleading their flock altogether. If church is about witnessing, why is it about numbers and how many we can bring in and not how many we can send out? Why are we not organizing groups to go to the streets to share the good news. Do we not believe? If so, we must not really love others, because we must know that they will die, and if they die without knowing; they will go to hell. I hate to state this cold. But there is no beating around the bush. I know for my brothers. I have talked to each of them, at least I talked to them and it pains me. That some may not be in heaven because they refuse to submit their lives to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. If you do not love your family, your friends, your neighbors, strangers, you are not fulfilling the law. Jesus said that every law rested on these two, Love God, Love others. It’s that simple. I ask you again. Do you think that there are fake churches? I’m not talking about those that openly oppose. I’m talking about those synthetic ones.