I have been in Poland for a month now and God has done more in my heart this month, than he has ever done before. God have shown me how big and powerful he his and he have shown me how much I really need him and his grace. He has giving me a much deeper hunger for reading in the Bible.
BY ELIN MARIA CHRISTIANSEN
Searching for answers in the Bible
I have realized how much I have been lead more by leaders than the Bible and the Holy Spirit. Leaders are good and important, but sometimes we just make conclusions out of what leaders or preachers have said, without searching for answers in the Bible ourselves. We all have leaders we respect more than others and it easy to “yes and amen” to everything they say. But even though I know a lot of good leaders and churches, none of these are perfect. Even the best churches we know are making mistakes. What we often do, without knowing it, is reading culture, history and church theology into the Bible instead of doing it the opposite way. We skip over those verses, we do not like and the verses which do not fit into the theology we have known for years.
Most of us have heard about Martin Luther, who in the beginning of the 16th century began the reformation in the Catholic Church. Before Luther many people did not have a bible to read in. It was only the priests, monks and other people with high authority in the Church who had a bible. The rest of the civilization only heard the Bible in Latin, which most people did not understand. Because of this many people could not tell if the priest told the truth or not. The Church sold a lot of indulgences to the people. People did now know the bible, so they could not say anything against this. They just trusted in the authorities of the Church.
If you as a Christian do not know the Bible, there is danger that you are living more out from a church theology rather than a biblical theology. Even though there are many good leaders and preachers with really good hearts, who love God and even if they live a radical life for Jesus, we have to remember they also just are humans who make mistakes like the rest of us. And the mistakes they are doing do not always have to be because of the desire of money and power.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
In our lives as Christians there must be a desire to grow and grow with God. God is too big to understand on one day and this is what makes the Bible so important and also really interesting to read. There is always more.
There are still be many leaders I look up to and there are still people who can give me a lot. But I cannot live out from their revelations. It is really important to share the revelations you have got from the Bible, so others can take part of it. Some people have bigger revelation on healing than I and therefore it is really good to ask them about their revelation on healing, while you are searching yourself. It is not dangerous to be challenged by people with different views than you. It only gives you the opportunity to search even more in the Bible.
I began in a process on the question baptism when I was on High School. I have as most Danish and Faroese people been baptized as an infant. When I was on High School, one my friends got baptized and he had as I already been baptized as an infant. I began to think really much about baptism. But in stead of looking for answer in the Bible, I began asking priests and other people who had the same theology I had always known. When I had heard their arguments on infant baptism, the baptism was a closed case. I did not even spend time searching for answers on this subject in the bible myself, because it was much easier to rest on the answers from people who had some kind of authority in the church. My attitude to it was: “If the priest and so many other Christians are doing this, it must be true”.
In August 2013 I began on VEIEN School of Ministry, which is a school with students from many different church backgrounds and therefore the school also has a class filled with many different views on baptism. We do not spend a lot of time on discussing this on the school, because this is not what is the main focus on the school. The school is for equipping people to their call in life and showing them their identity in Jesus. I love the fact that we can have fellowship with Christians from all kind of backgrounds and just focus on the Lord our savior. Jesus Christ is the one it is all about. He is the one who saves everyone who give their lives to him. He should be our main focus, but that does not mean that the rest of the Bible does not matter. We should always search deeper into the word. If the rest of the word does not matter, I do not believe God had given us such a thick Bible.
At the end of the year on the school three of the students got baptized. I actually dreamed about getting baptized at this moment, because I already knew what view I had on baptism; I did not have infant baptism theology, but what many call “believers baptism”. But I did not dare to take this choice to get baptized. I knew, that if I made this choice, there would be a chance, that many people would react on this, because it is somehow a really sensitive to talk about.
When I came to Poland I began in a Pentecostal Church. Really many got baptized or had recently been baptized; also people who had been baptized as infants. I realized that I had to read in Bible and search about the subject and take a choice myself. And my conclusion after searching trough all New Testament, was that I really believed in “believers baptism”. I could write you all the arguments on why I came to this choice. But the reason why I wrote all this is not first of all because of that I want to convict people to get baptized as I, but I hope people will search for the answer themselves in any kind of question as Christian. It is ok to ask other people why they have the opinion they have, but it is good to ask yourself if you are living out from revelations other people goy or if you are living out from what you see from the Bible yourself. If you want to hear my opinion on baptism, it is ok, but you have to ask why you have the opinion you have.