Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Tract

First of all, I would like to wish everyone a joyous Easter celebration. It is a wonderful reminder that we are all loved beyond our comprehension.

Last night my husband and I were standing on the street with our realtor. A man passed by and handed my husband a tract. A little Baptist pamphlet outlining that people can be religious but not right with God. I took one, too.

The problem with this little tract is that several quotes from different authors of the Bible are strewn together out of context to create new and (for lack of a better term) mutated messages. There are quotes and parentheses and no indication as to which version of the Christian Bible these quotes are extracted, because, in case you were not aware, each Bible is unfortunately worded very different based on the religious sect touting it.

Another problem with the tract is that in one sentence it says “salvation is God’s gift” and in another says that “those who believe will receive remission of sins”. The problem with these two statements is that one really contradicts the other: Salvation as God’s gift means we receive this gift free and clear, without paying for it, without any attempts to earn it (because Jesus died on the cross to take away the sins of the world, hence paying for EVERYONE). The other statement makes clear that to receive forgiveness; you have to take charge of your own salvation through believing. You have to earn it with your belief. This is really problematic. And I disagree with it entirely.

If I were standing on the street and Christ came up and handed me a tract, I think it would be a one-pager that simply read:

I love you, you are my child. Nothing you do will ever change this. Be kind and love one another as I have loved you, even if you do not agree with one another, always be respectful.

You are my child who is playing ‘outside’ and when you come back into my house we will get you all cleaned up so you can rest. I am always with you, whether you think so or not, it makes no difference.

Do your best and when you’re done with this life, we’ll talk further. And then I may have another project for you : )

Love Always,

Your Heavenly Father