Gary Smith wrote:
> So, until you get your eating habit under control, you aren't following
> the D&C, and this means you aren't a true Christian because you aren't
> following the prophets? I definitely wouldn't be considered one under
> your definition, either, since there are many things I struggle with and
> do not follow perfectly.
I didn't see anything in John's definition indicating a true Christian
follows Christ and those he sends PERFECTLY. By definition, a Christian
is a sinner in need of repentance -- but is a person who recognizes
their imperiled condition and admits it. But a true Christian DOES need
to follow Christ, no matter how weakly or how often he/she falls down
and has to be helped up again.
A not-so-true Christian would profess to follow Christ and then not even
try to follow him or those he sends. A not-so-true would even reject
many of the words of Christ, ignoring those which are too difficult for
whatever reason. A not-so-true (I may have coined a new and useful term
here) would certainly be more concerned about social pressures than
about following the fullness of the gospel.
Here's a wonderful example: my mother-in-law is one of the most
wonderful people God ever sent to Earth. She has suffered much (mostly
due to here LOUSY choices in husbands) and has given much. She has a
firm belief in the Book of Mormon and a testimony that his church is
true. But for the past 12 years, she has not joined the church.
Initially, it was because her then-husband threatened her and the bishop
with his pistol. Since then, it's been because it would be bad for
business, her other daughter (Cherie's sister) would have a hard time
with it, etc, etc, etc.
Ma certainly loves Christ. But she doesn't love him enough to sacrifice
All Things. Does this make her a Christian who avoids hard doctrine (as
many did who fell away from Jesus when he preached hard doctrine)? Does
this make her a not-so-true Christian?
What about Latter-day Saints who are not willing to sacrifice All
What if Abraham had not been willing to sacrifice All Things?
It's tough, this "following Christ" thing. Even his apostles kept
falling asleep on the job.
And I really can't see how one can follow Christ and reject him when his
teachings get too tough and still consider oneself a Christian. But I
don't have to figure that out (though it puzzles me) because that's NOT
MY JOB. I have too much concern about following him myself, and
following whenever I come across hard doctrine which requires sacrifice
or which I don't understand.
"Start by doing what's necessary, then what's possible, and suddenly you
are doing the impossible."
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