4 MISCONCEPTIONS THAT NEED TO BE CLEARED ABOUT BEING A CHRISTIAN.

Thou shall not call the name of the Lord thy God in vainExodus 20:7. This is one of the commandments of God to the children of Israel and subsequently, every believer. However, over time especially in the area where I live, this statement has been misinterpreted over and over again. When I was a child attending the children’s church, a teacher of ours said calling the name of God in vain was calling him without attaching any prayers…something like just shouting “Gooood” or “Jesus!”. His interpretation was totally wrong. If I find myself in a scary situation and I call “Jesus” without attaching a prayer, it does not mean I’m calling His name in vain. It means I’m calling on The One who can help me out. What then does it mean to call God’s name in vain? When a person swears by the name of God for something he knows isn’t true, he has in fact, called God’s name in vain. Another example is an unbeliever who does not believe in God, calling on God for the fun of it…as in, without any form of reverence or belief in His power. Involving the name of God in activities that impugn His character or dishonor Him or even disregarding the power in His name by any means is tantamount to calling His name in vain.  

To eat or not to eat? This is an issue that apostle Paul hammered on in virtually all his letters. Are there really some foods that Christians should not eat? The answer is no. All foods are made by God and in the beginning after God made all things, He said everything was good. Peradventure, you are a convert from another religion to Christianity and you aware of the kinds of pagan rituals performed before certain foods are served in certain celebrations and you happen to be at such celebrations for one reason or the other, there might be a little confusion arising on whether to eat this food you know has been earlier sacrificed to a false god or not. Do you know what to do? Go with your conscience. This is what Apostle Paul under the influence of The Holy Spirit, tells us. For some people, they are convicted in their spirit not to eat those type of foods and really, it’s okay…don’t try to convince them otherwise because if you do, and they eat the food without conviction from their spirit, then you have caused them to sin. For some other people, they eat these foods just as well as they eat non-sacrificed meals. This is fine too. The bible makes us understand that God Almighty the creator of the whole universe is the One and Only true God. That means, every other god, is actually non-existent and made up by people’s imagination and craftiness. Eating those sacrificed foods carry no weight because in the real sense, they have been sacrificed to no one. But, as I said earlier, each person is to keep with their own internal convictions. Some persons may not eat such meals probably because they are new in the faith and are only beginning to crawl…a little external force could cause them to fall, some people may be stronger and have no conviction against eating such foods but people telling them “not to eat it that it is a sin”, could confuse them and cause them to sin too. Therefore, in your eating and drinking, be careful not to lead anyone to sin…do it all to please the Lord. (1 Corinthians 8; Romans 14; 1 Corinthians 10:31).

What comes to your mind when you see a person with tattoos? In my country, the first thing that comes to the mind of most people is “wayward”. Because of this myopic conclusion that anyone with a tattoo is wayward or rebellious, it is unmentionable for a Christian to have a tattoo. I know some of you might be thinking of Leviticus 19:28 but the fact is most people who think it is wrong for Christians to have a tattoo do not even know about this bible verse. Now, I’d take us down history lane quickly. In the olden days, as at the time when God gave this law to Moses, body art and tattoos were associated with pagan rituals. As a result, God wanted His people to stand out from the people around them. If the pagan worshippers ate bread (this is an analogy, this is not an actual happening) the Israelites were instructed not to eat bread. Hence, several thousands of years ago, it was a clear no for God’s people to get tattoos. Right now, tattoos do not hold pagan ideologies as they did before and there are so many untattooed unbelievers. For this reason, not having a tattoo is not enough distinction. Nevertheless, if you as a Christian are considering getting a tattoo, weigh it on what I call “the holiness scale”.

Consider first, “why am I getting this”. Are you getting it for the attention or for fun or what is the exact reason?

Then remember Philippians 4:8…evaluate your choice on these words.

Think whether what you are about to do is beneficial in any way to you spiritually. Think whether it brings glory to God.

Some people may argue that they are tattooing a bible verse to their body but go-ahead to get the tattoo placed on their lower back. This obviously not a way to bring glory to God.

Think, is it really necessary? Remember all things must be done in moderation.  Also, don’t forget to evaluate and reevaluate its effect on your health. As a child of God, you have to understand that all things (which are not sinful) are permissible but not all things are beneficial (1 Corinthians 10:23). You might get a tattoo and not feel bothered in your spirit but how about the other believer who sees you with a tattoo but doesn’t know how much evaluation you have done before getting it? What of if he goes on to get so many and puts himself in health challenges or worse, trouble with God? Even though there are some instructions that God gives us in His words that are later updated, none of them are outdated. Getting a tattoo these days may not stand for what it used to as at the time when God gave instructions on it…but it is certainly a good instruction that a child of God should not get a tattoo. Don’t get yourself worked up if you already have tattoos though, since you gave your life to Christ you have become a new creature…2 Corinthians 5:17 (Romans 14:16; Romans 14:19; 1 Corinthians 6: 12; 1 Corinthians 10:23).

Moving on to one of the most controversial topics of all time; can a Christian get divorced? Well, the answer is yes, provided it is based on scriptural reasons…although, the bible advocates strongly for reconciliation instead of separation. In Matthew 5:31-32 Jesus corrects the previous norm that a man could divorce his wife for any reason. He says a couple can only get divorced if one of the partners has been unfaithful. Apostle Paul goes further to tell us that a divorce is also permissible when an unbelieving spouse separates from the other. These two grounds are reasonable enough but there is one other reason that seems uncovered. What if my spouse is beating me? A man who beats his wife has already separated himself from his spouse by so doing. He makes the marriage unbearable for the woman and God is not pleased with such people. God does not permit injustice and so He would never be pleased with a marriage that causes one partner so much pain. How could the name of God be glorified in such situations? Because the issue of divorce is very delicate especially to Christians, it is important to take such matters to God. Though the bible teaches more on reconciliation, (1 Corinthians 7:11) in cases where a reconciliation could be a recipe for disaster, a divorce is permissible. A Christian is not allowed to get a divorce on any other ground except for unfaithfulness of one’s partner (which also encompasses physical abuse) and abandonment by one’s partner. For any other reason, counselling from the right sources and talking it out with your spouse could resolve the situation.  

I pray the good Lord keeps giving us insights to see the part of His words that we have misconceived in Jesus name. Do you know any more misconceptions in the Christian life? Feel free to share with me in the comment section. If you read this post up to here, thank you…God bless you!

Published by teniiiola

A Pharmacy student who loves to talk about God.

11 thoughts on “4 MISCONCEPTIONS THAT NEED TO BE CLEARED ABOUT BEING A CHRISTIAN.

  1. Lol well, this tattoo thing has a long way to go in Africa, that’s for sure. And concerning divorce, I don’t exactly see how domestic violence is equal to infidelity in its biblical context. We need an organised body to lead the whole Church like the apostles did. For example when there was a dispute on whether or not circumcision was compulsory, it was the apostles, Paul precisely, who told them what to do about it. While I detest domestic violence with everything in my being, I also think we should follow scripture. The bible doesn’t have anything against indefinite separation of such couples, does it? Then again, the bible does tell us to be wise as serpents and a serpent wouldn’t stand and watch while it’s being beaten to death.

    Then about the food thing, lol I dey chop anything except my spirit says no.
    Thank you for allowing God to use you
    in this way ♥ . May you continue to grow in knowledge of Him and continue to grow closer to Him. Amen.

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  2. Concerning divorce, i could not explain it extensively since it would result to another article on it’s own but marriage means two people becoming one flesh yeah? So how would it look if you were to see a person a man beating himself up…madness right? if a man beats up his spouse, he has clearly separated himself from his wife…he has departed from marriage because in essence that is not a marriage anymore…it is a war zone. God does not like His children to suffer and such a marriage is unhealthy for the woman who keeps getting beat up, the children who have to witness that and even the man who becomes a perpertual sinner by so doing. Again, that is why i said it is a delicate matter that needs to be taken to God. At such times, godly wisdom is very important. The whole instruction about divorce in the first place is to protect people. No family going through a divorce is ever at peace or happy about it…it hurts people and that is why we are urged to avoid it. I did a lot research and studying before writing on the last two topics but unfortunately, i did not save the web adresses i visited so i think you should also check it up…i hope this makes it a bit clearer

    AMEN…may you also continue to grow closer to God. Amen.

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  3. You call on Jesus. Him being not God is not using the name of God in vain. Though we have the impression you do not accept that Jesus is the son of God and the way to God but have made him into your god; That naturally would be damaging your position because going against God’s commandment of having only One God, the God of Israel.

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    1. Thanks for your comment. However, Jesus Christ is God. John 1:1 tells us that in the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God and in the next verse it goes on to tell us that that same word became flesh and dwelt among us. Therefore, Jesus is the Word and if we replace the Word with Jesus, you’ll come to see that Jesus is God.

      Now I know that they’re two different people because the Bible makes it clear that Jesus is seated at the right side of God. Nevertheless, they are the same. As per, they are one. Praising God is equal to praising Jesus (one can’t even access God without Jesus anyway) and praising Jesus is the same as praising God. They are one and the same. Calling Jesus God does not equal to calling God’s name in vain…Jesus wasn’t even on Earth as at the time this instruction was given.

      I pray God help you to understand this and help you realise that He and Jesus are one.
      Feel free to message me directly on my email: tenny_shoneye@yahoo.com

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      1. John 1:1 does not say Jesus is The God but talks about the Word being “God’s Word having come into the flesh”. The apostle John who wants to write his gospel in the same way as the Genesis was written with a look this time to the “New World”, the world made possible by Jesus Christ. The Word is the promise of God, made in the garden of Eden, now having become a reality by the birth of Jesus.

        You yourself write “Therefore, Jesus is the Word” but then goes in the fault by replacing the Word with Jesus to give your false proof “to see that Jesus is God”. You should not change the words of the Bible in words you would love to see or not twist words so they can suit your own human dogmatic teachings. You should keep to the Biblical dogma’s and believe the Words of God and Christ like they are written in the Bible; God clearly declares Jesus to be His only begotten beloved son. Nowhere in Scriptures Jesus or God said that Jesus is God or would be God.
        “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (Joh 1:1 KJ21)

        “But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law,” (Ga 4:4 KJ21)

        “21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Jesus also was baptized. And while He prayed the heaven was opened, 22 and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from Heaven, which said, “THOU ART MY BELOVED SON; IN THEE I AM WELL PLEASED.” 23 And Jesus Himself had become about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, who was the son of Heli,” (Lu 3:21-23 KJ21)

        “16 And Jesus, when He had been baptized, went up straightway out of the water. And lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon Him. 17 And lo, a voice came from Heaven, saying, “THIS IS MY BELOVED SON, IN WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED.”” (Mt 3:16-17 KJ21)

        “10 And straightway coming up out of the water, He saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him. 11 And there came a voice from Heaven, saying, “THOU ART MY BELOVED SON, IN WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED.”” (Mr 1:10-11 KJ21)

        “Ye have heard how I said unto you, ‘I go away and come again unto you.’ If ye loved Me, ye would rejoice because I said, ‘I go unto the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.” (Joh 14:28 KJ21)

        “Then answered Jesus and said unto them, “Verily, verily I say unto you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do; for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.” (Joh 5:19 KJ21)

        “But I would have you know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God.” (1Co 11:3 KJ21)

        Yes Scriptures is clearly saying all the time there is Only One True God, and that God, the invisible Spirit, Who is the God of Israel, The God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Jesus and his disciples Whos is One and Who should also our only one God we worship.

        “God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”” (Joh 4:24 KJ21)

        “”‘Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.” (De 5:7 KJ21)

        “”Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD.” (De 6:4 KJ21)

        “yet to us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we in Him, and one Lord Jesus Christ by whom are all things, and we by Him.” (1Co 8:6 KJ21)

        “I am the LORD; that is My name. And My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images.” (Isa 42:8 KJ21)

        “And the LORD shall be king over all the earth; in that day shall there be one LORD, and His name one.” (Zec 14:9 KJ21)

        “And Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord.” (Mr 12:29 KJ21)

        “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” (1Jo 4:15 KJ21)

        “And I saw and bore record that this is the Son of God.”” (Joh 1:34 KJ21)

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      2. Funny, or should we say “strange”. You yourself agree that “the Bible makes it clear that Jesus is seated at the right side of God” though you do not see or want to accept Jesus is sitting next to God which makes him not God, but some one sitting at the side of God.

        When you sit next to some one or at the right side (or even left side) of some one you shall not become or b e that person.

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      3. Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
        Philippians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God

        This is from the same Bible, chief.
        Jesus is God. But Jesus is not the Father, and neither is he the Holy Spirit. He is God, and so is the Father, and so is the Holy Spirit. The Catholic Church calls this a mystery because we simply cannot comprehend how three different persons are the same person. Jesus isn’t “another God”, he is God.

        Jesus is the Son of the Godhead, the one given the name above all names at the mention of which every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus is Lord. If he was given a name above all names then doesn’t that overthrow even the name of God? Or doesn’t this make him equal to God as he has always been?

        Jesus “sitting at the right hand of God” isn’t a statement to be taken literally. If it was so then who is at the left hand of God? The Holy Spirit? Satan? Hell?
        We have to be careful not to read the Scriptures like a novel because if everyone did that, Matthew 5:29-30 would have left a lot of us with no eyes and hands.

        You don’t cherry pick some parts of the scripture that make it sound like what you’re saying is correct, and then leave out the other parts that blatantly state that what you’re saying is wrong.

        Thank you.

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      4. If “in the form of God” means the very nature of God, then Christ could not have been “Very God” while on earth, as trinitarians assert, since this is what he is said to have sacrificed and left behind in coming to the earth.

        2. The Greek word “morphe” (translated “form”) does not refer to “essential nature” as the trinitarian cause requires. This is proven by the following:
        a. “Eidos,” not “morphe” is the Greek word which conveys the idea of “essential nature”. As Liddell and Scott point out in their lexicon, “morphe” means form, shape, fine, beautiful form or shape, figure, fashion, appearance, outward form or semblance. It is opposed to “Eidos” which means “true form”.
        b. In the context of this passage, it is stated that Christ “took upon him the form of a servant” (#Php 2: 7). But what is the form of a servant (Grk. “doulos,” a slave)? The “essential nature” of a slave is the same as that of any other human being. The form, therefore, must refer to the semblance or demeanour of a slave as the distinguishing characteristic.
        c. “morphe” occurs in only one other place in the N.T.- (#Mr 16:12), and here it clearly does not mean “essential nature”. Jesus appeared “in another form,” but this could not refer to a change of his essential nature since the reason why he appeared to be in another form was because the disciples’ “eyes were holden”. (#Lu 24:16) cf. (#Lu 43: 31). Not even a trinitarian or a J.W. would be prepared to say that Christ’s essential nature was changed after his resurrection and glorification.

        3. How was Christ in the form of God? He had the semblance and demeanour of the Father mentally and morally. His character was the express image of his Father’s person. (#Heb 1:3).

        4. Sometimes trinitarians stress that Christ was originally in the form of God-i.e., “being” in the form of God is taken to mean that he was in fact “Very God” before his “incarnation”. The Greek verb “huparchon” refutes this position since it is in the imperfect tense which expresses action yet, or still in course of performance. Time signified by an imperfect tense is of a continual, habitual, repeated action, so that “being in the form of God” means “being, and continuing to be in the form of God”. Christ never ceased to be in the form of God since in semblance and demeanour from his birth he habitually exemplified his Father’s character. Note the use of “huparchon” in the following passages:
        a. (#Ac 2:30)-“Therefore being a prophet does not mean “being originally before birth a prophet,” but rather a prophet and continuing to be such.
        b. (#1Co 11:7)-“Forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God” does not mean “being originally before he was born the image and glory of God,” but rather being the image of God and continuing to be.
        c. (#Ga 2:14)-“If thou being a Jew” does not mean “being originally before his birth as a Jew,” but rather if you from the start and continuing to be a Jew.

        5. “Thought it not robbery to be equal with God” is generally acknowledged to be a poor translation. The rsv reads as follows: “He did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped.” Unlike Eve who grasped after the fruit which was to be desired to make one like God (the “elohim”) to know good and evil, Jesus refused to take the kingdoms of the world without the crucifixion of the flesh and the declaration of the righteousness of his Father. In the Garden of Gethsemane he subjected his will to his Father’s, not arrogating to himself prerogatives that rightly belonged to his Father. (#Mt 26:39).

        6. How did Christ take the form of a servant (slave)? Two passages supply the answer:
        a. “If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.” (#Jo 13:14).
        b. “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” (#Heb 5:8, 9). Although Christ was in the form of God in his semblance and demeanour, he took on him the semblance and demeanour of a slave.

        7. “He humbled himself”; “he emptied himself” rsv (#Php 2:8), refers to Christ’s deliberate choice to submit his will to that of his Father. Christ was worshipped (#Mt 8:2; 9:18), performed the works of God (#Jo 10:37-38), and forgave sins (#Mt 9:2), but he never arrogated to himself authority which had not been delegated to him by the Father. In so doing his example was a powerful lesson in humility to the Philippians. But if Christ “being originally, before his birth, while he was in heaven in the form (essential nature) of God thought at his birth, when he descended into the womb, not to be equal with God, but left the form of God,”* where is humility demonstrated?

        * This is the way in which (#Php 2:6) is read by trinitarians. See A.B. Bruce, The Humiliation of Christ, (Edinburgh: T. and T. Clarke, 1889), pp. 1-23.

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      5. Jesus managed all his life not to do his own will but the will of God. In that way he gave himself as a ransom for the sin of all people. By offering himself as a Lam of God he brought the Grace of salvation to all people, but people have to believe in him and his heavenly Father and obey God to be able to enter the small gate of the Kingdom of God.
        As beleivers in the sent one from God, the son of man and son of God, who is the Way to God (and not to himself) we obeying the Word of God, as presneted to us in the Scriptures, do hope to be judged by that authorised one from God, to enter the narrow gate of his and God’s Kingdom.

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      6. We do hope one day you shall come to understand that Jesus is the way to god (which you seemingly already start seeing already for a part). Jeus and God are two different persons and they never said they are one and the same or Jesus never called to have equality with God. Jesus recognised he could do nothing without God, like we also can not do anything if god does not allow us to exist and do.
        “19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, “Verily, verily I say unto you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He seeth the Father do; for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. 20 For the Father loveth the Son and showeth Him all things that He Himself doeth; and He will show Him greater works than these, that ye may marvel. 21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead and quickeneth them, even so the Son quickeneth whom He will. 22 For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son, 23 that all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He that honoreth not the Son honoreth not the Father who hath sent Him. 24 Verily, verily I say unto you, he that heareth My Word and believeth in Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation, but is passed from death unto life. 25 “Verily, verily I say unto you, the hour is coming and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God; and they that hear shall live. 26 For as the Father hath life in Himself, so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself, 27 and hath given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. 28 Marvel not at this; for the hour is coming in which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice 29 and shall come forth—they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life, and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. 30 “I can of Mine own self do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I seek not Mine own will, but the will of the Father who hath sent Me. 31 ¶ If I bear witness of Myself, My witness is not true. 32 There is Another that beareth witness of Me, and I know that the witness which He witnesseth of Me is true. 33 “Ye sent unto John, and he bore witness unto the truth. 34 But I receive not testimony from man, but these things I say, that ye might be saved. 35 He was a burning and a shining light, and ye were willing for a season to rejoice in his light. 36 But I have greater witness than that of John; for the works which the Father hath given Me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of Me that the Father hath sent Me.” (Joh 5:19-36 KJ21)

        “Jesus said unto them, “If God were your Father, ye would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of Myself, but He sent Me.” (Joh 8:42 KJ21)

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