By Simon Ifeanyi Ezeh
Quite a few Christians had issues with my article which was on the nature and origin of evil or sin. That was not surprising because Christians usually are not aware of the doctrines of Christ and would always quarrel with his teachings whenever its presented.
My only authority is Christ, not the Bible. Whatever concept you find in the good book is only correct to the extent that it agrees with Christ. If you can’t find a Bible/Christian doctrine in Christ’s teachings, especially in the parables, reject it as false. It’s a lie!!! Your life can’t be based on it. My reason for taking this stand is that almost every doctrine in the Bible especially the OT has an opposing doctrine in the same Bible but it’s not so with the doctrines of Christ. So, I limit myself to Christ.
Sometimes, people believe they are digging deep or engaging in what they call theology by studying all manner of belief systems including the Bible books in the OT and NT alike and trying to unify all the various thoughts, traditions and doctrines in one gospel and present it as the same gospel which Jesus Christ preached. They also humour themselves with degrees like DD, PhD; wear priestly garments and believe that such appurtenances havesome effect on the message they present but it’s all smoke and mirrors because none of those could open blind eyes, raise the dead or even heal a hade ache!!
In his struggle to introduce the real message of salvation to the people, Jesus Christ had a lot of trouble with those who had soaked up a lot of false and misleading teachings by blind people who claimed to see – the old testament prophets. He then summarized those OT misleading and false teachings as old wine (or old/worn garment) whereas his message is the new wine (or new garment) which we’re counselled to prefer to the old. Many people are so used to the old wine (indoctrinated and bigoted) that it’s near impossible for them to accept the new wine of Jesus teachings. Please, note that the new testament also contains a lot of false teachings. Always use the teachings of Christ as the yardstick for knowing what’s true or false.
It’s important to note that God doesn’t teach uncritically. He usually invites people to use their brains or discretion and make their cases before him. As in Isaiah 1:18, Matt 21:25, 21:28, 22:42, 16:3, etc., God often asks us, “What do you think?”. As always, I’d advise you get a Bible in whatever format and look up the scriptural quotations in this writing. People often tell me that the gospel couldn’t be subject to (human) logic but I find it very idiotic. Why won’t God who created man in his image and gave him a brain expect him to think? The logicality of the gospel is water tight!!!
The problem with Christians is that they won’t begin with Jesus Christ and simply end where he ends. Instead, they would teach all sorts of concepts they never heard or got from him. For instance, Jesus’ position on evil is that whatever evil one commits is from himand that evil defiles people but Christians won’t just agree. They’d ask unnecessary questions like, “Who created fornication?” Or, “Who created lying?”. Very unlearned questions! A man creates fornication by first thinking it and then committing it, just as a liar creates lying by lying! The fornication is from you, just as the lying is from you also. This process doesn’t include the devil at all. Of course, the devil kills, steals, and destroys and may even succeed in killing, robbing or destroying a child of God but he could never defile him. Never!! Only you could defile you!!!
Jesus Christ says evil is always from within human beings. It means man has capacity to create good or evil from within him…it’s up to him! Christians teach that poverty, childlessness, not being married, sickness, death, failing exams, etc. are evil but all the afore mentioned conditions and situations of life have nothing to do with evil, according to Jesus Christ. Christ’s teaching is that evil is immoral thoughts, words and actions, from within and will always defile the person who produces it – Matt 15:15-20. Whereas Jesus Christ says, ‘Blessed are you poor, …”, Christians say, “Cursed are you poor…,”, it’s obvious Christians don’t believe in Christ.
New wine and old wine (same theme as New garment and old garment)
Mat 9:16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.
Mat 9:17 Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.
The two parables above are self-explanatory. Even if it seems a bit difficult for anyone, all we need to do is refer to some of his earlier teachings where he overruled some old testament prophets (old wine/garment) and replace them with the truth (new wine/garment). He also teaches that we couldn’t combine the two ideologies because the outcome is fatal. Jesus Christ is the faithful witness who had to come since all the servants (the prophets) didn’t understand the messages they were given and weren’t faithful to the little they understood for all sorts of reasons.
We’d go on to mention a few teachings in the Bible that are antithetical to the message or teachings of Christ and the expectation is that we should know the truth and be set free. That’s the whole point of the coming of the Messiah, the Christ. For the sake of this conversation, let’s designate new wine as NW, and old wine as OW while we compare and contrast the doctrines of the prophets and that of Christ to know what to accept or throw away. OW is always false whereas NW is always true.
Old Wine (OW): God fights, takes sides and sends “his” people to fight physically in bloody wars where lives and property are destroyed and innocent men, women and children taken as prisoners of war!!! This is the position of most of the old testament prophets but it’s most outrageously expressed in Numbers 31. Please, take two minutes to go through it below.
Num 31:1-54And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Num 31:2 Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites: afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people.
Num 31:3 And Moses spake unto the people, saying, Arm some of yourselves unto the war, and let them go against the Midianites, and avenge the LORD of Midian.
Num 31:4 Of every tribe a thousand, throughout all the tribes of Israel, shall ye send to the war.
Num 31:5 So there were delivered out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand of every tribe, twelve thousand armed for war.
Num 31:6 And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand of every tribe, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the war, with the holy instruments, and the trumpets to blow in his hand.
Num 31:7 And they warred against the Midianites, as the LORD commanded Moses; and they slew all the males.
Num 31:8 And they slew the kings of Midian, beside the rest of them that were slain; namely,Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba, five kings of Midian: Balaam also the son of Beor they slew with the sword.
Num 31:9 And the children of Israel took all the women of Midian captives, and their little ones, and took the spoil of all their cattle, and all their flocks, and all their goods.
Num 31:10 And they burnt all their cities wherein they dwelt, and all their goodly castles, with fire.
Num 31:11 And they took all the spoil, and all the prey, both of men and of beasts.
Num 31:12 And they brought the captives, and the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and unto the congregation of the children of Israel, unto the camp at the plains of Moab, which are by Jordan near Jericho.
Num 31:13 And Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and all the princes of the congregation, went forth to meet them without the camp.
Num 31:14 And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle.
Num 31:15 And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive?
Num 31:16 Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.
Num 31:17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him.
Num 31:18 But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.
Num 31:19 And do ye abide without the camp seven days: whosoever hath killed any person, and whosoever hath touched any slain, purify both yourselves and your captives on the third day, and on the seventh day.
Num 31:20 And purify all your raiment, and all that is made of skins, and all work of goats’ hair, and all things made of wood.
Num 31:21 And Eleazar the priest said unto the men of war which went to the battle, This is the ordinance of the law which the LORD commanded Moses;
Num 31:22 Only the gold, and the silver, the brass, the iron, the tin, and the lead,
Num 31:23 Every thing that may abide the fire, ye shall make it go through the fire, and it shall be clean: nevertheless it shall be purified with the water of separation: and all that abideth not the fire ye shall make go through the water.
Num 31:24 And ye shall wash your clothes on the seventh day, and ye shall be clean, and afterward ye shall come into the camp.
Num 31:25 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Num 31:26 Take the sum of the prey that was taken, both of man and of beast, thou, and Eleazar the priest, and the chief fathers of the congregation:
Num 31:27 And divide the prey into two parts; between them that took the war upon them, who went out to battle, and between all the congregation:
Num 31:28 And levy a tribute unto the LORD of the men of war which went out to battle: one soul of five hundred, both of the persons, and of the beeves, and of the asses, and of the sheep:
Num 31:29 Take it of their half, and give it unto Eleazar the priest, for an heave offering of the LORD.
Num 31:30 And of the children of Israel’s half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the beeves, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD.
Num 31:31 And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses.
Num 31:32 And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep,
Num 31:33 And threescore and twelve thousand beeves,
Num 31:34 And threescore and one thousand asses,
Num 31:35 And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him.
Num 31:36 And the half, which was the portion of them that went out to war, was in number three hundred thousand and seven and thirty thousand and five hundred sheep:
Num 31:37 And the LORD’S tribute of the sheep was six hundred and threescore and fifteen.
Num 31:38 And the beeves were thirty and six thousand; of which the LORD’S tribute was threescore and twelve.
Num 31:39 And the asses were thirty thousand and five hundred; of which the LORD’S tribute was threescore and one.
Num 31:40 And the persons were sixteen thousand; of which the LORD’S tribute was thirty and two persons.
Num 31:41 And Moses gave the tribute, which was the LORD’S heave offering, unto Eleazar the priest, as the LORD commanded Moses.
Num 31:42 And of the children of Israel’s half, which Moses divided from the men that warred,
Num 31:43 (Now the half that pertained unto the congregation was three hundred thousand and thirty thousand and seven thousand and five hundred sheep,
Num 31:44 And thirty and six thousand beeves,
Num 31:45 And thirty thousand asses and five hundred,
Num 31:46 And sixteen thousand persons;)
Num 31:47 Even of the children of Israel’s half, Moses took one portion of fifty, both of man and of beast, and gave them unto the Levites, which kept the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD; as the LORD commanded Moses.
Num 31:48 And the officers which were over thousands of the host, the captains of thousands, and captains of hundreds, came near unto Moses:
Num 31:49 And they said unto Moses, Thy servants have taken the sum of the men of war which are under our charge, and there lacketh not one man of us.
Num 31:50 We have therefore brought an oblation for the LORD, what every man hath gotten, of jewels of gold, chains, and bracelets, rings, earrings, and tablets, to make an atonement for our souls before the LORD.
Num 31:51 And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of them, even all wrought jewels.
Num 31:52 And all the gold of the offering that they offered up to the LORD, of the captains of thousands, and of the captains of hundreds, was sixteen thousand seven hundred and fifty shekels.
Num 31:53 (For the men of war had taken spoil, every man for himself.)
Num 31:54 And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tabernacle of the congregation, for a memorial for the children of Israel before the LORD.
New Wine (NW): Posting the entire Num 31 was deliberate in case someone is just too lazy to get a Bible and go through it. This event of Num 31 is atrociously godless and has nothing whatsoever to do with Christ. Thank goodness, we’re Nigerians. If you actually read through the entire Num 31, and compared it with what Bokoharam or herdsmen do in Nigeria, especially the North of Nigeria, you’d see no difference whatsoever. Remember Chibok girls and Dapchi girls?
Num 31, like other related episodes in the Bible are, in all probability, mythical but even if they did happen, God certainly never sent anyone on such crazy and godless adventure because everything Jesus Christ did and taught is opposed to that kind of behavior. This sort of scripture explains why some Christians are very wicked and always pray for the death of their enemies or just people of other faith. Sometimes, they pray that God should take the wealth of others (they call unbelievers) and give to them, inviting God to help execute their covetousness. God has “suffered’ all manner of character assassination in the hands of Christians.
Christ in Joh18:36 and Lk 9:56 teaches that he hasn’t come to kill people but to save their lives. Remember, he came to reveal the true nature of God since prophets had character-assassinated God in all their attempts to reveal him to humanity. Sending a band of bokoharam to a village to destroy it and carry their women captive could never be associated with God who’s righteous, holy, just, faithful, loving and forgiving. That’s clearly man’s warfare ideology because the virgin girls you’re taking captive and subjecting to all manner of abuse did not offend you in any way, shape or form and it’s the soul that sins that dies, not the children of the sinner(s) in addition to the fact that most of these girls they kill and abuse in the North of Nigeria (and elsewhere) are children of God. Even if the victims offended the attackers, we are not allowed to fight or take laws into our hands. A sheep of Jesus pasture can never contemplate self-help.
God says that what man (a man who’s not at one with him) thinks is completely different from what he thinks – Isa 55:8,9 – and Jesus Christ severally demonstrated that ideal in all his encounters with men.
So, that God is a man of war who sometimes sides some people to kill some other people in wars or fights is a lie. It’s old wine which would destroy any new bottle that takes it. Whereas he forgives and welcomes those who repent, he’s waiting for others to repent and come home: he’s for everybody. He’s the God of every tribe, tongue or race. His love is equal on all his works. Jesus Christ never corroborated or supported a single story of war in the Bible, instead, he distances himself from the spirit of violence which Elijah operated with and commands all his followers to do same. Of course, Christians are unaware of this and that’s why they keep singing and dancing to the God of Elijah in preference to the God of Jesus Christ. All the stories where God made “his people” kill “his enemies” in the Bible fall flat on their faces once they collide with Christ!!
In fact, Jesus Christ called unbelieving Jews sons of the devil in John 8, in spite of their Abrahamic ancestry. In Luke 16:19-31, a Jew died and went to hell and in Luke 13-16, a Jewish woman was bound by the devil for 18 years!! So, the concept of traditional God’s people according to classical Christianity is a bloody lie!! Children of God are those who obey him, wherever they may come from just as children of the devil are those who obey the devil, wherever they may come from.
His commandment is to love, not to kill. One of the evils he mentioned as coming from inside is murder. Peace makers are sons of God, not trouble-makers or war mongers. I know its impossible for nations to forgive others who want to take their lands and lord it over them but one has to be a fool in the eyes of the world to serve Christ. The concept of Nations is ungodly – so, don’t hide under patriotism (which is also ungodly) to disobey God. You can’t find any godly excuse to fight for any nation on earth. According to Christ, you’re always wrong whenever you fight because God’s children don’t fight, no matter the degree of provocation. Since God commands us not to fight, why should you fight because an ungodly entity, called your country, tells you to fight?
Mat 5:38 Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth:
Mat 5:39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
Mat 5:40 And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also.
Mat 5:41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
Mat 5:42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away.
Mat 5:43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
Mat 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Mat 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for hemaketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
Mat 5:46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
Mat 5:47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
Mat 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
With these kind of words from Jesus Christ, I don’t see how war or any fight whatsoever could be justified in God.
Old Wine (OW): God needs some sacrifice of some sort to forgive sins. So, Christians preach the gospel of sacrifice of Christ for the forgiveness of sins.
Heb_9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without sheddingofblood is no remission.
There are many other scriptures that teach this same fallacy which is very popular with Christians except that they also believe (falsely) that Jesus sacrifice ended the life cycle of sacrifices so that a sinner is forgiven for believing in the “final sacrifice” of Jesus Christ, not for repenting and forsaking his ways. The fallacy that Jesus Christ was a sacrifice to God for the forgiveness of sins is the basis for contemporary Christianity and it’s very sad and unfortunate.
New Wine (NW). God never at any time required sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins! How do we know this? Jesus Christ brought us the truth and God isn’t subject to change. Whatever the Christ says overrules whatever anyone had said before or would say later in opposition to him.
Mat_9:13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Hos 6:6 For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
Psa 40:6 Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.
Psa 40:7 Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me,
Psa 40:8 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
So, according to Christ, the gospel is actually of repentance for sinners, and forgiveness or mercy from the merciful God.
Given these hard facts, you’re not expected to still waste further time arguing. Just go on your knees and repent and God Almighty would receive you and there’d be a party in heaven for your sake! Amen. Contd.