Last Sunday I was privileged to teach Sunday school. However, one thing struck me as I taught this class. I posed to them this question, “What are the things saved people do?” and no one had an answer. The church became dead silence for few minutes; all were deep in thought. I decided to pose to them a second question, “What things saved people do not do?” and to my surprise, there were tens of hands up, others literally standing up to catch my attention to answer the question.
I was astonished. I cannot not help stop thinking about this experience. How comes these kids knows much of what saved people (or Christians) must not do but have little to say about what saved people do?
“Is Christianity a bunch of rules?” am still wondering. It is sad that most of us has only subscribed to adhering a list of “do’s and don’ts.” Our religions have majored in showing us what we should not do, but rarely are we told what to do.
The writers of Gospels shows us different instances where Jesus was against Pharisees and the teachers of the law because of their concentration on do’s and don’ts that made it hard for them even to recognize him as the messiah.
In my interactions with letters of Paul, I rarely see the apostle concentrating on what his audience should or should not do. His focus was the gospel. Mainly urged his audience to have and nurture their relationship with Jesus Christ. Gospel of Jesus Christ was the foundation of his faith.
Think of this, every time you join a game to play, the first thing we all get interested to know is the rules. Not only the rules but also the penalties. It is sad that most of us concentrate in knowing the rules of Christian living, which acts as a veil covering many from experiencing the messiah.
It is important for all of us to realize that Jesus paid it all on the cross. By keeping on viewing Christian behavior as a series of ‘do’s’ or ‘don’ts’, we will become imprisoned by them rather than getting liberated.
In the Old Testament, the first five books of Torah (Books of the Law), Moses gave out 613 commandments commonly known as “Mitzvot” to be followed by the Israelite. God knew that it would be so hard to follow the laws fully and thus provided a way out for those who violated them, an annual sacrifice of a lamb without blemish.
To solve this once and for all, God brought forth His one and only son, Jesus Christ, to die for the sins of the world. He came as the remedy for sin! Through Jesus, we are freed from the list of dos and don’ts that handcuffed humanity for many years.
As a result, we are able to please God by believing in Him and the sacrifice of His son, Jesus Christ, for our sins. The goal of every Christian thus should be to cultivate a close walk with God. Having a set of do’s and don’ts serves no purpose.
There is no greater joy on Earth than knowing God, Supremacy of His son Jesus Christ and His love.
By Kenneth Irungu
iServe Africa Apprentice 2015/16