Door Stops

Neil Girrard

Jesus said, “Woe to you, experts and teachers of the Law, and you, zealous ritualists and traditionalists, you hypocrites! You shut the kingdom of God in men’s faces. You do not enter in yourselves; nor do you stand aside and make way to allow in any others who desire and attempt to enter.”

When one objectively examines the religions of the native American peoples (so-called “Indians”), one is struck by the many similarities between the heavenly Father-God of the Bible and the Great Spirit of various tribes. Certainly, there are differences but the similarities are deep and striking.

One who is in any way familiar with the real way of following Christ and familiar with the real and often brutal and bloody history of the white European “Christian” treatment of the “Indians” of North America, finds it enticing to imagine how history might have otherwise happened than how it did happen. Suppose that, instead of coming as they did with a very superstitious “gospel” of Christ (that among other things allowed the Puritans and many others to commit atrocities against the “savage” “heathen” red man), the Puritans and other “Christians” had recognized the similarities of the Father God of the Bible and the “Indian’s” Great Spirit and seen it all as God’s sovereign preparation of the red man to be more deeply integrated into the everlasting kingdom of God. Instead of forcing the red man into the white man’s cultural roles, suppose the white man had instead gleaned and embraced the red man’s “intuitive” and spiritual connections with the Creator (which they had acquired through their generations of intimacy with nature) and the red man had been free to embrace the eternal cross of Christ without all the white European appendages. The result would have been a truly new world very different from the world today - a world that is probably very comparable to the coming thousand year reign of Christ when men will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Though the emphasis of that prophecy is on the departure from war (something neither the red nor the white man have yet attained), the implication of a return to an agriculturally-based culture (one more in tune with creation than man’s current, modern “advanced” technology-based society) should not be overlooked.

One could rightly argue that such a merger was ahead of its time and such a culture would not have been industrially prepared to stave off the demonic one-world obsessions that came on the scene about a hundred years or so later. But those who are determined to following only Christ, those who have had some connection with other cultures (especially having some acquaintance with foreign missions and at least some knowledge of the cultural collision the gospel ought to transcend and override), those who don’t want to repeat history’s mistakes, these can hardly be blamed for indulging in a forward-looking form of “nostalgia” toward a time and place where only righteousness (what is right in God’s eyes) dwells. God, being both the Creator Spirit of life and the Father-God, sent His own uniquely divine yet fully human Son into the world for the specific purpose of redeeming and rescuing the world from its fallen, dying and decaying condition by sacrificing Himself on the cross of Calvary in propitiation (satisfaction) for God’s righteous condemnation of our sinful ways.

As this world endures Satan’s last-ditch, futile efforts to prove that he can rule the world benevolently and be like the Most High God, many will die for the name of Christ, thus again showing that God’s way and Satan’s way can never be compatible. Christ’s way is a way of truth, righteousness, goodness and mercy worked from within the inside of a man’s innermost being. This interior work produces men, women and even children who routinely display the love and compassion of God for mankind. Satan’s way is that of heavy-handed, top-down, impersonal power and control forced upon all whom he can subjugate. Christ brings individuals into His corporate body to produce beneficial change. Satan molds all persons into mere units who can be easily replaced so as to keep the system, organization or institution functioning - often rolling right over the lives and corpses of those snared in or by that system.

Christ’s is the loving, inside-out approach. Satan’s is the controlling, domineering, top-down, outside-in approach. Grasping this simple fact alone will enable us to more clearly discern how modern churchianity has deviated from the original way of following Christ and become the foretold apostasy, the great falling away from the faith, just as this insight will open our eyes to many of the strategies of the devil and the demonic in any realm that involves a dehumanizing bureaucracy and institutional system. The failure to discern this primary difference between the kingdom of Christ and the kingdom of Satan is the root behind nearly all of the ills and woes that plague modern “Christianity.”

The way for the red man to enter more fully into the kingdom of God was blocked by white men who had refused or failed to enter into the real way of following Christ themselves because the white man had succumbed to a “gospel” already infiltrated with the outside-in, top-down way of Satan. That process had begun even in the time of John’s writings but it became openly visible and widely practiced in the 1st and 2nd centuries when bishops took “the place of Christ” (Ignatius of Antioch) as head over every ekklesia (English “church”) in every major city. For the first time (though certainly not the last), the people of Christ were centered around a man other than the Man Christ Jesus - or perhaps better stated, suddenly there was a new layer of men between the people and the only mediator between God and men. Delegated (“in the place of”) authority replaced the direct and total authority and power expressed by the Holy Spirit who lives within each and every believer’s heart.

Fifteen hundred years later, the white Europeans were well prepared to arrogantly suppose themselves a superior race over the red man because they had a superior technology and their gospel, supposedly a “divine mandate” (actually a demonically-inspired distortion of God’s way of peace, justice and mercy) that gave them the “right” to conquer and steal the resources of the New World for their own greed. White men, who came most often in the name of Christ and God, stood squarely in front of the door to the kingdom of God and prevented the majority of red men from coming to a more accurate knowledge of God because their own arrogant presumption that they held a superior moral and religious tradition blinded them to the spiritual realities.

History still repeats itself as “pastors,” “apostles,” “elders,” “prophets,” “priests,” “fathers,” “popes,” all exercise their delegated authority over those who blindly and foolishly submit to their headship. Nearly all such clergy express a similar arrogance that their own peculiar private interpretations are the correct ones and they therefore see their doctrines and traditions as an adequate basis by which to practice separation and division from those other “lesser” followers of Christ or, even worse, those evil, pagan heathen who practice all those really dark, ugly sins.

The fact that Christ died for all men everywhere is almost never mentioned and certainly never seen as the central, most important fact of all time.

Let he who has ears hear.

Matthew 23:13
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