The Christian Secret

The question before us is why the Bible’s central message about Christianity, mentioned loudly and clearly, remains a secret. Even to those who call themselves Christian. The New Testament is filled up, packed down and running over with a message that few people recognize, let alone understand.

Most people, even most Christians, define Christianity as being a good person. If you’ve never been to church, I can understand this lack of knowledge. But if you’ve spent time in a pew, you should know that can’t be the answer.

Being a good person is within reach of any human being. Some may choose not to reach, and some may find the reach a challenge, but the good person label is available to everybody. And who could quibble with wanting to be a good person?

But that limited definition of Christianity raises a difficult question: If being a good person is all God intends us to be, why did Jesus have to die? What would be the point of all that suffering and shame? As a gruesome object lesson? From a God of love?

No, Jesus died because our strength and determination can’t–emphasize can’t–make us all God wants us to be and accomplish. God’s intentions for us, the reason for our being, go beyond our own capabilities, however amazing.

So how does this work?

The sacrificial death of Jesus released the full power of God’s Holy Spirit, the third part of the Trinity–God the father, Jesus the son and the Holy Spirit, one God with three functions. That may sound like gobbledegook, but here’s what it means: The Holy Spirit’s power is everywhere, all the time, and it can be ours.

Whenever anybody chooses to follow Jesus Christ–to make God the boss of life–the Holy Spirit–God himself–moves in. God’s spirit literally joins the new believer’s human spirit, and they become one.

With that union, God gives us ideas we’d never have on our own. He increases our courage and provides insights, warnings and comfort. He takes us beyond where we can take ourselves.

But most new Christians–and long-time Christians, for that matter–don’t have a clue.

One group says the Holy Spirit just makes you talk funny and fall down a lot. Another group, put off with the antics of the first group, says the Holy Spirit is only a concept, not a reality.

Why the confusion? Mainly because the Holy Spirit doesn’t kick down the door and take over our lives; he simply makes himself available. If we don’t know about the power he adds to our resources, life won’t change. We’ll just go along, trying to be good people as best we can, relying only on our willpower and determination.

So, I’m telling you. Listen up! If you choose to follow Jesus Christ, you have a powerhouse living in you. And all you have to do to access that power is learn to recognize the Holy Spirit’s voice when he speaks to you, spirit to spirit.

It takes effort to learn to recognize God’s voice over all the noise of our lives–maybe getting together with a few others on the same journey to compare notes and avoid blind alleys. But it’s not hard.

Now you know the Christian secret: Christianity is God living in us to empower us.

When AA believed in the God of the Bible, their recovery rate was more than 90%. Then they went multi-culti and got politically correct, replacing God with a higher power of your own design. Recovery rates, according to the latest studies, plunged to the single digits. Even in the face of this condemning evidence, they stick with the higher power hoo-hah. They let people suffer the hell of addiction rather than admit that God is the real deal, that it’s not all semantics.

Go for the real deal.

Here’s a key you’ll need: Since Father, Son and Holy Spirit reference but one God, the Bible interchanges their names at times. For instance, when St. Paul, who wrote most of te New Testament, talks about the Holy Spirit, he often says “Christ,” as in “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Knowing that unlocks everything.

Now that you know how real deal works, why settle for less than the power that makes life whole?

To read more about how Christianity works and how all the pieces fit, check out Bette Dowdell’s book How to be a Christian Without Being Annoying here.

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