Am I a scam artist?

What the church offers the world is either the greatest thing anyone could have or it is the biggest scam ever perpetrated.

Or, I should say, what some churches offer the world. Some only offer a sense of community or a warm do-gooderism. Some offer personal inspiration or self-help empowerment.

What we have to offer is much more than this: the Kingdom of God.

If we call ourselves orthodox, we dare not deny this or water it down. In the last article of both the Nicene and Apostles’ creeds we affirm the life everlasting or the life of the age to come. The Bible speaks frequently of the same.

We are not merely in the career advice business or the relationship enhancement business or the get my kids to mind me business.

We in the eternity business.

Yes, I know. Lots of people don’t like the word “business.” Pick another if you like. The point remains.

The resurrection of Jesus was not a metaphor for the way things get better after they go bad. It is a promise, the first fruits, of a general resurrection of the dead, who will stand in the judgement — the righteous to eternal life and the unrighteous to the lake of fire.

And, yes, how we work and how we relate to each other and how we live in non-Christian society are all important. There is a reason Jesus and the Apostles taught us about these things, but these things are not the main thing the church offers the world.

The church offers the world the Word of God, the body of Christ, the bread of life, the cup of salvation, the keys to the kingdom, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

Either this is true or we clergy are a pack of scam artists.


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