UI – Part 232b – Salvation, God vs. Allah (2 of 2)
(Continued from Last Week)
Last week we ended with the analogy of Adam as a car, once new, then broken. How could it be restored? The Adam-mobile needed Salvation. With the aide of the manufacturer (creator) and his team of field specialists (repair mechanics) this Adam-mobile can be restored, reborn, as a new Adam-mobile. The salvage yard can be avoided and the Adam-mobile made to look as good as new. It would have a history, its own CarFax, with that history of past mistakes now covered, and the future as bright as the day the car left the showroom. It was Saved.
Man, philosophical, authoritative, and human made up and make up laws, knowing there was a need for order. Society needed (and needs) boundaries to enable people to live with one another. The boundaries were intended to provide a means to a peaceful existence, with policies, control elements to achieve stability. However such an environment can offer some people benefits and others restraints; it can suggest one sex stronger than another, or with rights above another. It can separate the wealthy and the poor, the worker and the boss, the aggressive and the passive, the slave and the master and the lazy vs. the industrious. What is fair? Man tries but cannot enact perfect laws. Because the standards man establishes tend to benefit the created.
Using the car analogy, the protective elements society creates are the lines on the streets, the passing lanes and stop lights, the apparatus to signal changes and headlights at night, and more. They all are designed to enable the operator to protect the Adam-mobile.
The greatest example of erroneous laws designed by man as such is exhibited in Muslim dominated cultures. The boundaries established are wider for a few and narrower for others; the laws are not equally applied. There are sects, tribes, even competing religious groups that are not compatible; they are to be eradicated. There is latitude provided authority, as was the situation for the Prophet Muhammad, whose personal household was not subject to the same standards, his number of wives for example. This is not right, it is not godly, nor is it equal. Men and women have differences, they have different roles and purposes, but as humans, they are equal and must be treated equally. It would appear more a domain that Satan would prefer.
There are lanes in effect in which women cannot drive, turns they cannot make, even cars they cannot drive. There are cars that are called out for total elimiation, destruction, no matter who is at the wheel.
The Bible established laws in Genesis, through Moses, and in Deuteronomy and Leviticus from the leaders of the then Chosen people. The Bible also provides a guide for man. If man needed a manual to follow the Bible is it. Any reader, try as they might, cannot find answers to questions that would lead them towards the wrong, or to err. The answers/directives provided lead only towards correct judgment. It is a unique document. The laws serve a purpose informing humans and reminding them of their sin. The laws clarify sin. Laws may do that more than provide the standards for a peaceful co-existence. The objective is to be right with God and if all humans are right with God then the Kingdom of Heaven would be here on earth. The biblical parameters apply equally to men and women.
“It is Scripture, and Scripture alone, in the light of which all moral questions must be answered. Scripture as an external revelation became necessary because of the sin of man….Man alone cannot himself truly face the moral question, let alone answer it.”[i]
Restoration becomes the key. God made that possible. As a believer you too can be restored. You are as the Adam-mobile clearly needing repair. It is possible, made so by the Creator himself. The means for restoration of all mankind has been provided.
God the Restorer
God gave us all the finest example of living on earth to demonstrate how-to-live, and took this most unlikely person, Jesus, humans unaware of the incarnation, to be punished for all the transgressions, the mistakes, and the errors of man. Perfect in every way he became the collective auto-junker for all. Why put to the crusher such an exquisite machine? But it was done and suddenly reappeared as new, as if all Cars were now as new, despite outward appearances, accepting that the Jesus-mobile was crushed for us all. Mankind, believing in God, was free of the laws, yet was made aware this gift of forgiveness necessitated believing and accepting and having a new life, reborn, reconditioned, restored, as a new Adam. This is Grace. “For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.”[ii] You now obey God, purposed to be obedient because that is your desire; you love God above all else and are thankful for His Grace. You follow all the road signs because you want too, not because you must.
Allah provides no such pathway similar to that noted above. This god of Islam reserves judgment, keeps it to himself, never sharing, only suggesting, the opportunity to be saved from the actions of oneself. Allah may or may not forgive. It is a guess. My guess is terrorists are not forgiven, no matter how they interpret the Quran. Muslims turn to their scholars, the ulema, for answers; it is their best guess tainted with personal convictions. The Bible has better answers. The Quran even refers Muslims to the Bible for the final say. Sura 10:94 – “But if thou (Muslim) are in doubt as to that which We (Allah and Muhammad) have revealed to thee (in the Quran), ask those who read the Book (The Bible) before thee. Certainly the Truth has come to thee from thy Lord, so be thou not of the doubters.”
God is righteous. Do you want to be controlled by God? We are weak in our natural selves; we know this as does God. We use or have used our bodies in wicked ways, disobedient to what we know the Lord requires. Worshipping the created made us slaves to impure thoughts and deeds; we made the choice not to obey God. What are the benefits? Eternal life with God is not one. Through the savior Jesus Christ we have been set free from sin. We have become servants to God, obedient and thankful. Holiness is the reward. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”[iii] This is Salvation.
Allah offers no similar gift. It is deeds only, with Allah taking credit for good deeds and leaving man, the created, high and dry when it comes to evil deeds. Allah takes no credit for creating the human who does evil, therefore how can Allah be the creator? Know this: it only takes one evil deed to be denied access to The Kingdom.
A most descriptive verse from the Bible: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works (deeds), so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”[iv] (the highlights in bold are mine)
Jesus is knowable. God wanted that. Jews, Muslims, many others, and Christians, know Jesus. Muhammad knew Jesus; he had a cousin of his first wife who knew Jesus (Waraqah). Then there is denial. Why? To deny Jesus and God’s gift (for all mankind) is to keep the created on the pedestal and worshipped. Christians accept Jesus and serve the Lord as obedient followers. There are those that know Jesus and deny God vehemently as he constantly reminds them of their affiliation with Satan, their preference for the pleasures of the created who enable the created to do as they please. They want to erase God and history so they can continue to wallow in the muck of their own choosing. To be forgiven, to be Saved, takes acceptance of what history has recorded and maintained. The Bible is history that enables the world to understand how it came to be and functions. It tells us who is in charge. It also provides a guide for mankind, individuals and collectively, that never misleads, never lies, and never deceives. Jesus lived; Jesus died; Jesus rose again. Jesus was resurrected. It was not faked. Believe and be among those awaiting their resurrection and seat at God’s table.
Please note that as the ‘restored man’, reborn, and reconditioned we are submissive to the Lord, mindful of his Being, made aware of our purpose, striving as a believer to be godly. Our imperfections remain, but we struggle; our fight is with our proclivity to be tempted and succumb. We are forgiven. Now we know we are to please God, the creator, knowing and assured of our Salvation. The good works or deeds we are to ‘do’ have been ‘prepared’ for us. Just believe and know that God is present in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, each serving as an attribute of the one God; it is so man can understand. There is no mystery. “Love the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”[v]
If not already your Adam-mobile can be made like new. Let Jesus take the wheel.
Grace and Peace