Table of Contents at bottom of page.
by Gary Amirault
(This article was written for Christians and non-Christians alike. When the second person plural (you) is used in this article, it usually refers to the Christian audience. The first few pages are addressed primarily to the Christian audience. It is rather ironic and perhaps tragic that the basic message of this book will be better received by the non-Christian community than those in the Church.
You will be hearing the voices of men and women who have passed to the other side. Some of the characters like Methuselah, Havilah, Eliazar, David, Radbod, Abraham Lincoln, Hannah Whitall Smith and others are real historical people. Others like Ali, Kim, and Rachael Abraham, are fictional composites who represent millions just like them. While these characters are fictional, their experiences and thoughts are not.
Many of you who are presently non-Christians will greatly identify with the thoughts expressed by these characters. Some Christians, due to the doctrines they have been taught, will have a difficult time with some of the thoughts expressed by some of these voices. I beg the reader to try to place themselves into the shoes of the voices you will hear in this publication. Christians must learn to identify with our brothers and sisters around the world, not only in our generation, but in all generations. It is sad but true, non-Christians seem to have more compassion for the world-at-large than most Christians. This should not be so. Christ's compassion in a believer should be able to hear the heart's cry of those around us for whom we are to be a guiding light.
With greater compassion we Christians must break through our hardness of heart. It is our hope that this writing will open some eyes to truths which have been hidden from much of the Church and the world for many centuries. I pray the Christians who read this book will open their hearts and minds to the questions raised by the following voices who represent billions of others.)
Have you really ever thought through your beliefs?
Since the declaration given by Jesus Christ, "Go you into all the world," Christians throughout the centuries have felt they have been given the awesome responsibility of declaring the hope of the Christian faith to all mankind. However, this "hope" has taken many shapes and forms since the message was first sent forth. Today, there are thousands of denominations of Christianity each sounding trumpets of different messages which, quite frankly, have not been harmonious to each other. Have you ever wondered if your denomination is sounding the right message?
It is easy to defend our sect's teachings against another sect of Christendom. We just have to believe in our set of Scriptures and hold them up as a shield against other viewpoints. Rarely do we bring ourselves to the place where we truly attempt to see from the other's point of view. Why should we do something like that? We may fall into disbelief and perhaps have to dismantle the kingdom we have built around our set of Scriptures. Furthermore, considering the fact there are literally thousands of different denominations and sects, who has the time to make an honest comparison?
So few Christians really ever embark on a thorough search to test their message, the partial hope which their sect offers to some of the world. Therefore, unless the Lord prepares a fire to test the gold to see if it be pure, Christendom will continue to appear as an orchestra whose instruments have not been tuned to the same pitch, nor are the players playing the same piece of music.
As long as this is the state of affairs in the church, we should not expect the world, our audience, to respond with an ovation. To the contrary, we should expect to be ignored or mocked and scorned because we have the audacity to declare our music is of heavenly origin. As long as the factions of Christendom continue to sound a discordant, contradictory sound, is it reasonable to expect the world-at-large to flock to our message? Of course not! We should expect the very response which we presently are getting, bewildered looks, disdain, sarcastic comments, and thumbs down on a poor performance.
Yahweh declared to Abraham that through him all the nations of the earth shall be blessed. (Genesis 18:18) This is truly a blessed sound which might cause the whole earth to stand in ovation. The angel who appeared to the shepherds of Israel declared joy to all people. (Luke 2:10) This might even bring on an encore! But are these two trumpets in tune and harmony with the message the majority of Christendom has sounded forth? Let us sample the audience of mankind. Let them recount for us the message they heard, whether it was a sound of blessing and joy or the sound of children just learning to play their instruments, or something far worse.
Let us take a trip on the river of mankind and speak with some of the souls the Creator has made. Let us hear from those who have run their course. Hear the words of those who now watch the institution called the"church" race through the decades sounding the clarion call of a thousand different voices to bring what they each call the "good news to all mankind". Let us hear from those who many church leaders say have no further hope. They weren't "born again" or did not make the "right choice" before they died or they weren't among the "elect", chosen of God.
Most of these souls never had the opportunity to join the "right" denomination with the only "true" message of salvation. Few of them ever heard the word "baptism" let alone the "correct" way to be baptized. As to keeping the Ten Commandments, they may have kept thousands of commandments, but as to the Moses' big ten list, few ever heard of such a list, let alone attempted to keep them. Many who have returned to the dust have attempted in their lifetime on earth to do many "good" things to attain a peaceful existence on the other side of the grave. Yet what most of them would call "good" according to their culture and belief system, are often at odds with traditional church teachings regarding what constitutes good and evil.
Contrary to Paul's teaching, Christendom offers many means and methods of salvation. Let us hear from some of those for whom Christ died. Let them tell us what the modern gospel of Christendom means to them. Perhaps, by stepping out of ourselves for a moment, looking at the river of mankind from the viewpoint of those who died before us from different times and cultures, we may learn something about ourselves. Perhaps our journey may enlarge our understanding of God and his plan of redemption.
To those of you who use the name of Christian, who are clinging to your denominational standards as firmly as one would handle their sword in a fight for life itself -- since you are unable to hear the sounds of other denominational trumpets sounding a different tune from yours, and since you are probably incapable of rising up from the confusion the world hears to hear for yourselves that the sound of the universal church is not harmonious, not truthful, not rich with mercy, not glorious, but rather the sound of confusion -- to you I say: Why not be honest and acknowledge that your denomination's trumpet sound is equally discordant and unharmonious? Are you afraid to be honest with yourself? Are you afraid that if you take an honest appraisal, you may be left with nothing on which to cling? Are you afraid you may have wasted years of your life, perhaps all of your life, adding breath to something that is not alive? The breath you have lent to the trumpet sound of your denomination or movement may prove to be very "unsound" indeed.
There are millions of Christians who would rather continue on their courses, even if it is an intercourse with death itself, rather than come to an honest time in their lives to "test" what they are doing, saying, and literally giving their lives to.
But Jesus says, "He who clings to his life will lose it, but he who loses his life for my sake will find it." Repeating the messages of dead men like Luther, Calvin, or Pope Pius may not be life at all. It may be nothing more than the death the elders of Israel were sounding forth in Jesus' day. Oh, they had the Scriptures, did they not? They used those very Scriptures to condemn the Lord of Life. Are we so vain to think that we are incapable of doing the same thing with the same Scriptures? Let us humble ourselves for a moment. Let us put off our robes of tradition and hear the voices of our brothers and sisters from ages past. Some would not call these men and women brothers and sisters. They would call them enemies. OK, then call them enemies. But hear them out. Did not Christ command us to "love our enemies"? Hearing one out is certainly in the bounds of love. Let us hear them out. Let them tell us if our gospel is truly "good news to all mankind". Let us see if our trumpet sounds reach these dead men and women or whether our sound falls short of the mark. Let us see if the angel who appeared to the shepherds of Israel declaring joy to all people actually reached all people, or if his declaration was nothing more than vain boasting, or a Jewish figure of speech, not meant to be taken literally -- an exaggeration for effect.
The men and women whose voices we will hear have run their course. They can speak to us only through history, archaeology, and literary devices such as this article. See if your trumpet sounds like good news to these men and women. Is it a glorious sound of love, joy, and peace to all men, or does your sound fall short, or on deaf ears, or do pursed judgmental lips and gnashing teeth prevent the full measure of liberty from coming forth? See if tradition or fear of what the elders might think is holding back the liberty which is necessary to declare the full sound of the pure gospel. Remember, one day you will have to look into the loving eyes of the One who gave his life for you while you were yet in your sins. To him, you will one day give an account, not to your pastor, your pope, or denominational superintendent.
I have assembled together an audience to judge the sound you have accepted as the pure sound of the gospel. Sound forth the message you have been taught, the message you have incorporated into your very life. Now let us hear from all the corners of the earth to learn what your sound means to them. Listen to their words and re-examine your foundations. Does your trumpet reach all generations with glad tidings based upon Scripture? Or does it fall short, which is what the English word "sin" means in the Greek and Hebrew languages? Judge yourself, today, in the privacy of your own heart. The elders of tradition need not participate. After all, they will not be your counselors at your judgment. So then, learn to speak and hear for yourself. Now then, open your heart to hear their cries.
Table of Contents
Page 2 - Methuselah / Havilah / Eliezer / a slave in Goshen
Page 3 - David / Sheshai / Radbod / Ali
Page 4 - Zuma / Maria / Kim
Pages 5-7 - Hannah Whitall Smith
Page 8 - Rachael Abraham / Ivan Magog
Page 9 - Joseph Simon
Pages 10-11 - Paul
Page 12 - Abraham Lincoln
Pages 13-18 - Gary Amirault (the author)
Pages 19-20 - A Cloud of Witnesses
Page 21 - Michelle Amirault
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