Hi, As I read Scripture and look at my life, and the life of those around me, in the church, I see that we have completely lost our understanding of some simple words and phrases: Faith, God, Lord, move of the Spirit, love our neighbor, love, follow, and the likes. We have really reduced the meanings of these; and because of it, we’ve reduced the meaning of our walk with God.

Faith has been reduced to a mere believing IN Y’shua, yet Scripture tells us that just believing is not faith. James tells us that REAL Faith has actions that accompany it. Right after, James gives an example from Abraham. And in case you may think that Abraham is out of your reach, he gives us an example of a prostitute. The “hall of faith” chapter in Hebrews 11 gives the same explanation.

Some words and phrases have been reduced to a point that I can’t even start to explain. Love your neighbor AS yourself? This has been reduced down to I love my brother and sister as long as they don’t tick me off - which completely cuts out the command to love those who hate us and DO GOOD TO those who do us harm.

I’m not sure what people think “Lord” is, if they think of this at all. A “LORD” is a ruler of a kingdom. A ruler creates rules and guidelines so that the kingdom runs in a manner in which the lord see’s as best. But in Lord Y’shua’s Kingdom, we say He does not have rules because He got rid of those rules. We can clearly see guidelines He wants us to follow, even saying that it’s a Kingdom rule, but we don’t follow those rules - and we are satisfied with worshiping Him for an hour or so a week; yet we still want the Kingdom riches.

When our Lord says to make disciples of all nations, don’t hoard up treasures here, love those who hate you, give up everything in this life to seek after Him (because He’s a pearl of great price), and we don’t do those things, what have we reduced the word “follow” to? It means absolutely nothing: we shouldn’t even use the word any more.

The “move of the Spirit” has not only been reduced but twisted. When I read Scripture, I see the Spirit of God move in a life and death situation with pagans. I see Him move, and have Christ’s followers speak other languages, for the spreading of the Kingdom. I see the Spirit move to give boldness to them so they can proclaim the Gospel to the World. Yet today, we’ve changed the move of the Spirit to a group of people babbling in the comforts, and security, of a church building then going home to post about it on Facebook, sit down to a fat meal, and watching the boob-tube.

All we have to do is look around to see how we’ve reduced the word “love” - the divorce rate in the church is as high as that in the world. “Love” is just simply a word that is blurted out with absolutely little to no meaning. Most people “love” Christ the same way they “love” a burrito. They love Him as long as He’s presented in a tasty manner, easy to palate, cooked just right with all those unhealthy ingredients. Christ said if we “loved” Him, we would keep the commands; yet we make up excuses on why we can’t keep virtually any of the commands. In this, the church is saying it’s impossible to “love” Christ.

And we have God: the Creator of all things. His power is shown in Scripture and in the world around us. His Heavenly Kingdom was seen by Isaiah and by John - they also saw a veiled image of God while there. Yet, many times we talk to Him like we’re talking to a cashier at a store when we are late for an engagement.

The manner of our reduction of God, along with virtually all the words and phrases we’ve discussed here, can be summed up in a true story. I was at a church event, which involved food, and the people were sitting around joking about their gluttony, about how much food they eat and have eaten and was eating. Really? God specifically calls it a sin and destroyed cities for it; but we’re going to mock God and make a joke of His command and His power. I mean, I really don’t think that they sat there and was purposely making fun of God (I think I’m going to make fun of God today - ha ha); but it’s a witness of that condition that we’ve sorely reduced our meaning of who God is and what He says, what His commands say, what He has already done on this subject, and what He says He will do to those who disobey and do not do His will. They couldn’t tell me that they take Him seriously or they wouldn’t be laughing about it. If they punished their child for something and that child went back and did it again later while laughing with his friends, we’d say that child didn’t take his parent seriously - and I’m sure the parent would be both hurt and angry. They’ve reduced the meaning of “love of God” and “love of neighbor” because, while there are people hungry, they joke about eating too much; and having so much. They reduced the title “Lord” and the word “follow”; because they don’t take into the accounts of Christ’s words to not store up for ourselves and to help those in need - they joke about their abundance while Christ reduced Himself to a servant.

There are more words and phrases, this was just a sample. If we read Scripture, and are honest with ourselves, I’m sure we can find more in our lives.

In the church, most of the people make a mockery of God and His Word; they don’t really take Him seriously. I say “most” because that is what Y’shua said - many rather than few. It’s really not hard to see. Until we start putting these words and phrases into context, until we start taking the Bible seriously and taking God seriously, we will never receive the abundance of what He has in store for us - we only get a taste of what the world has to offer and call it God.

I don’t know what else to say. If we defend ourselves, if we make up excuses on these facts presented, how can we really say we are a Christian - Christ like?