The Many and the One

"Just tell me what you believe so I can tell you why you're wrong!" You may not have heard these precise words, but I can bet you've run into this attitude at some point in your life.

Our faith is distinct it is who and what we are. What we live and die for and what we know our ultimate destiny will be if we live in faith to Yeshua our Messiah.

People have used all sorts of words to slander and offend Believers over the ages: "Judaizers", "heretics" some have even gone so far as to call us "devil worshipers". This would be something akin to a cannibal looking down upon your dietary habits, they are the last ones to talk!

There are times people try to gauge what Brethren feel about other religions and sects or denominations, trying to label us either as liberal and progressive or conservative and intolerant. Which is funny because you really can't be both, but these are the kinds of comments that get thrown around about us.

The reason I mention this is that I want to make it very clear to everyone that Brethren are not intolerant of other faiths. Not at all! But saying this, does not mean we believe in pluralism. Pluralism means that there are many paths to God and to eternal life. That we absolutely do not believe. There is one path. One Narrow Path laid out by Yeshua. You cannot believe this and believe in pluralism. Some groups teach that they are all the Body of Christ, but if they believe what each group is doing is right, then why would they insist on their own way. This implies that all Christian groups are on the Narrow Path and there is no proof to substantiate this at all. Secretly, they believe each one is closer to being right than the others and their way will take them to the Kingdom of Heaven. Kind of like an unspoken competition. "Last one to the top is a rotten soul!" It just becomes guess work at that point.

So it must be clear that Brethren do not believe in pluralism and we only believe one way... The Bible, along with the Didache, will take a person from this world along the Narrow Path to eternal life. We do not believe any other way leads a soul to where they want to go. After all, Yeshua is the Way the Truth and the Life. If a person does not come into contact with this truth in this life, that they will have the opportunity to do so in the hereafter. Because we believe God is both just and merciful. We believe that every single soul will have the choice to turn to God through Yeshua. To have no provision for every single soul would imply that God is neither just nor merciful. Those who cling to the latter idea are usually those who believe themselves to be above reproach and guaranteed for paradise. This acceptance of an unjust and unmerciful concept of the afterlife, makes themselves guilty of legalism at best, and can be a sign of intolerance and cruelty of the soul.

So we believe in One Way but we also believe in an infinitely Just and Merciful God that would never leave a single soul without the clear option to choose to turn to the Light of Yahweh. We believe this opportunity to choose is so vital that to think that just because the physical body ceases to work, that the spirit isn't still working toward this same goal is unthinkable.

It is a small mind and a cold heart that accepts intolerance and injustice for even one single soul. Yeshua would never accept this, and as His Brethren, neither should we.

What about people of other religions, then? Are they evil? No. We do not believe people of other faiths are evil. We do believe some are in error, they are mistaken. And a person who is in error is not evil. If they faithfully seek the God of the Universe and strive to do so based on the teachings they were lead to believe and have never heard of Bible or the True Gospel of Yeshua, they are not evil. They are in a vehicle that just does not have the power to take them where they need to go. If they put aside this faulty vehicle, either in this life or in the next and embrace Yeshua and His teachings, they will get where they want to go - eternal life in the Kingdom of God.

But make no mistake - there are some evil teachers out there. A cultural Christian who is lukewarm to Yeshua, that makes a mockery of His teachings and twist His words to suite his or her own needs, is evil and will not be accepted by Him.

There are more people who claim to be in Yeshua who don't know or follow Him than there are people who have never heard the Gospel of Yeshua in this world, and act more Godly in their morality and ethics and civility in this world.

If you saw a community of Buddhist monks you would assume they are followers of Yeshua because they embody the peaceful nature that Yeshua outlines for His disciples.

If you saw the Hindus that renounce worldly objects and desires to seek the One God, of their deeply spiritual nature and high moral character. You would assume they are followers of Yeshua because they embody the walk of the spiritual minded believer, one that Yeshua outlines for Believers.

If you saw the Sikh communities, how they follow the One God, how they study the word of their scriptures, how they discipline themselves in worship, how they hold themselves to a very high moral, spiritual and ethical standard, and how their faith is in all parts of their lives. You would assume they follow Yeshua because these are mandates for all Believers.

Having said this, you would think I am encouraging pluralism, but I am not. These beautiful and spiritual people practice the faith that they have been given. They do not have Yeshua, not because they are evil but because of circumstances other than their own nature. This is not something Yeshua would ever hold against someone. In all of these faiths, there are some truths that are in line with the teachings of Yeshua. The truths of:

Love
Service
Peace
Duty
Contemplation
Spiritual Practice
Morality
Ethics
Philosophy
The drive to find the ultimate Truth
The drive to find our final Home.

All world religions of merit, strive for these things. These elements are true! Anything that is true has only One Author... Yeshua. He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. If any soul seeks the Way to life, they embody peace, love, compassion, morality, ethics, philosophy, service spiritual practice, duty, and contemplation then they will have to seek out Yeshua, if any soul looks for "Ultimate Truth", they must learn at the feet of the Master - Yeshua our Messiah; if any soul longs for completion, to attain eternity in the Kingdom of God and live with Yeshua for eternity in a joy that surpasses our ability to comprehend, they will have to take hold of Yeshua as He is, the only One who can get them to where they need to go.

We do not hate other religions. Not every person who kills or injures another person is a representative of the highest attributes of their respective faiths. Followers of Yeshua understood that there were many gentile communities of deeply spiritual, ethical and moral ideals that only need to come into contact with Yeshua to complete their faith. The Unknown God then becomes the Known God.

However, adopting the attitude of Yeshua, we have no compassion on those who betray the Gospel of Messiah, that spread lies about Him and His teachings, that reject the Law and encourage others to do the same (See Matthew 5:17-20). To never have the truth is one thing, to have the truth and reject it or twist it to meet your needs is an abomination and these people God will turn His back to.

There is only One Truth. One Way and One Path, just as there is only One God of the Universe.

Yeshua our Messiah is the Source of Truth and Life. We follow His Teachings in the here and in the hereafter.