(((Reposting from last January)))
Immersed and Permeated
-From Strong’s Greek
After I had finished high school, I joined the army and ended up in South Korea. The place where I was posted was somewhat north of the “fun” part of SK, but not quite to the “fun” part of NK. I was on a base just south of the DMZ, attached to a helicopter battalion.
As a young man of just 20 yrs old, and having come from a small town in the Midwest, I was free to experience all that the army and the world had to offer. Up to that time I was a church going, and nominally believing ‘Christian’ for a couple of years following my believing in Christ at the age of 15 (see my previous post), however the newness of the freedom I was enjoying had led me down the paths of drunkenness and debauchery. Alcoholism and possibly other diseases that could result from my behaviors were sure to be at the bottom of that Roller Coaster Ride.
About one year into what would be my two years and two months stint, I met a brother who was Church of Christ and who was able to convince me that since I wasn’t properly baptized, that’s why I hadn’t had the power to live a christian life fully. His implication was that I might not even be saved if I hadn’t been dunked under the water. The difference between my Baptist and his CoC Theology should have made me question if other Christians thought the other groups were ‘unsaved’ yet too, but I wasn’t thinking along those paths yet.
The Power of God
He said that there wasn’t anything special or magical about the water or the process, (really?) but that the obedience to Christ’s command to be baptized for the remission of sins was the open door to True Salvation ™ in Christ. For CoC, Baptism in water is the last in a 5-Step Plan of Salvation. It’s what “Seals the deal” with God.
So I got into an over sized bathtub in someone’s down range apartment in Uijongbu, South Korea and they immersed me completely under water while they prayed prayers over me. Now that I was “Re-saved”, apparently I would be “Imbued with power from on High”, the Living, Indwelling Holy Spirit of God, to live the Christian Life and resist “the World, the Flesh and the Devil’s” influence. I went back to church, read the bible again, listened to preachers who declared God’s love for me and those other poor rotten sinners out there where I was once before.
The Power of Community
But I guess it didn’t take, because in a few months I was living my own life again, making my own choices (some good, some bad) without the benefit of either an inner voice or a even a “booming one” from the clouds to “direct my paths”. In church at this time, I was not taught the Bible past the Sermon Stories on Sunday or the Wednesday Bible Studies. I was not encouraged to study or research the Truth ™ of Christianity’s claims past “the Bible says it… and we believe it”.
I had no real foundation other than the “Power of the Holy Spirit” and the “Indwelling Presence of God” after I had been “Bobbed for Jesus” in that tub. Strangely, what was supposed to be “all I needed” and all sufficient as my inner guide by god’s own “Indwelling Presence” proved in Reality and daily experience to be lacking and not nearly enough to keep me and protect me from faltering back into Sin and the World. For that, I would need “to continue with the saints…” and when I didn’t, then the effects of the Group Think and ‘Community’ wore off pretty quickly.
The societal aspect of being an active, church going, ‘one another-ing’ believer was found to be more powerful and life changing than the god i served by doing so. The question being as I type these memories out now… why didn’t i think of that then? -Locutus (not really)
Why was Church Community “… able to keep that which I have committed unto him… ” when clearly God, Jesus, the Power of the Indwelling Holy Spirit and the Living Word of God, the Bible, not able to do so as they had promised? Now I know, at least regarding my former faith, that they are not able to because…
they are not real.
They don’t truly exist outside of the Echo Chamber of Christian Community. Socially reinforced and ‘washed’, if you will, into our minds and behavior patterns. we believe them, we walk in the Community because “… walking in the spirit…” proves to be a Fantasy when actually tested against Reality.
Fear and Aggression, Pull and Push: Defense Mechanisms for Ignorance
This is what the Christian Apologists fear. Questions or challenges to demonstrate and prove the assertions they make are actually in concordance with Reality. This is why they will use psychological bullying tactics to either buckle your reservations or drive you out of the conversation altogether.
Their aim is to protect “The Collective” otherwise known as The Christian Community from doubts and outright contradictions to what they are portraying as Absolute Truth to the Faithful. And I have found that they will use whatever means necessary and at their disposal to do it, even if they can’t see that they controvert their own theology and christian morals by doing so. In their minds and hearts, they must preserve the Bubble at all costs because secretly and subconsciously at least some of them know…
That’s All There Is
My questions for YOU the Reader today
Have you been Immersed in Jesus or Assimilated into the Collective that is Christianity? Are you ‘Bobbing’ for Jesus or just treading water?
There is a way out. It’s called asking questions no one wants to answer honestly and then not accepting B.S. answers till the Apologists show their true colors. Then you will know exactly how much you’ve been lied to, manipulated, and brain washed into thinking that the World and Reality are your enemies rather than just being where you live and what we all must deal with every day. My encouragement to those readers who may be Christian today… Resistance is NOT Futile. It is the first step on the path to Freedom.