Updated: Jun 21
The title of this post was presented as a question; a "meme" actually, that stood out to me because it strikes every necessary note of modern, mind-numbing nonsense we try to wrap our head around almost daily. The meme (or misnomer), presented in this quandry was meant to be, designed to be- confusing. Shredding this meme is as easy as defining what is, "competition" & "who" is family.
Here's 5 points to disect this meme. At the end, I share thoughts on a word, the world has in my opinion, throughly vandalized which is- "Community."
Churches- Family or Competition
1- FAMILY- The Scriptures state Yeshua and His Father identify "family." The wheat & tare for now, grow together. We do however have a good litmus test for "family" I go into more, in point #3.
2- (A) CHURCHES- The contemporary churches are saturated, bogged down in false doctrines of peddling the sloppy-grace of unrepentance, unaccountability, entitled prosperity, and insist on upholding pagen inspired traditions as a mountain thier willing to die on.
2- (B) TESTING BY WHAT STANDARD- As earlier stated the Heavenly, Royal family makes the final call on who is, or is not, family. However, I believe that by using the written Word of the Most High for the only factual standard of identification, we can get a really good idea as to who our spiritual family actually is. We can start by recognizing those who value the 10 Commandments, they live with a heart of conscientious repentance, and live carefully to avoid snares. Family does everything they can to learn the Father's ways, to understand them, and adopt them as thier own lifestyle. They esteem the Restored Names with great reverence. They continually look to the Word for Truth, and stand ready to buck tradition, and renounce ALL cultural deceptions.
4- COMPETITION- WITH WHAT?- In no way would I view what the modern churches do as a "competition." I'm aware to some degree of what goes on in these churches, but to view. thier efforts and effects as competitive, is giving "churches" waaay too much credit. I've seen 1st hand how pew-warmers can dress up, show up, and stand up in church, then disregard any simulance of righteous living on the other side of the church walls. How can they be classified as "competition?"
LOOK AT THE MINISTRY- A large "community" presence by way of plate-dinners, yard and bake sales to enlarge facilities add anemitites, or pad pews, is not ministry. I believe that if done correctly, ministry is devoid of luxury. Genuine ministry uses thier corporate resources on, and for, the shattered desperate lives of orphans, widows, and the vulnerable broken lives that seek fundamental change through YHVH'S written word. Ministry means, "to serve" not enrich, or satiate the spiritually thirsty soul with philosophical mantras, in-house coffee nooks, or elaborate PA systems. By simply following Yeshua's example, true "ministry" stays in correct perspective.
Here's a very quoted verse-
📍Ephesians 6:12- For we *wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." I see NO illusions of competition there. Instead, I do see a constant war, fought by "we." We, the faithful, courageous, unconforming family, that fights by standing on the unadulterated Truth.
5- COMPETITION NO, WARFARE YES
Lastly, the meme itself is presented as a declarative statement; it appears to be a well-crafted play on words, for the hearts and minds of the easily confused and lukewarm to hash out and argue over among themselves.
There's no competition; only spiritual WARFARE- a war that's already been won by Yeshua. Those traveling His narrow-path fight daily for every inch gained in the spiritual victory. We’re called "more than conquerors," but also warned we're being sent forth as "sheep among wolves." Matt. 10:16
🕎TWO ROADS- If we were on a road of "competition" with churches, we'd be succumbing to the snare of sparring in a never ending cycle of "one-up'smanship." We'd also be on the same road to YHVH'S judgment for poor discernment, and lack of wisdom.
Conversely, the "Torah road" choose's YHVH'S 10 Laws (Commandments) of Covenant, and can testify of His faithfulness to keep His promises, and bestow blessing- much better than the road of competition. YHVH'S reward is FAR better than the smooth, feel-good word-games, and well orchestrated programs, the enemy employs on the emotionally driven heart, and itching ears, of the modern church.
CHURCH "COMMUNITY"- There's no shortage of souls that value thier inclusion of "community" over taking the solitary position of YHVH’S ways. But a "community" of knowingly, (or unknowingly) comfortably entertained, conforming souls, in error, is tragic. To choose "community" OVER courageous, non-conformists striving to be Biblically authentic, and uncompromising to honor the way of YHVH, is the common sway of the world and most churches. It seems more have bought into the community of churchianity rather than Torah, and it's always been human nature to follow the crowd, and the traditions of men.
Followers of The "Nazerene" are so single-minded having both eyes intently on Him, they leave the sorting out of the contemporary "church" to Yeshua. They're willing to assist anyone seeking Truth by pointing them to YHVH’S ways, minus the denominational doctrines of men.
People seeking, "community" instead of Truth, find it's easier inside the modern church walls than on the narrow path. Torah folks are willing to walk away from said, "community," jobs, or family- we love Truth more. Yeshua said. "follow Me." He didn't say find a compromise or denomination, and soak in its doctrinal muddy water.
IF all there is, is self-affirming word-salads, that solidifies the comrodery of a feel-good, emotionally driven "community," where's the everlasting merit of it? Yeshua brings DIVISION and a SWORD- not competition.
Matt. 10:34-36 [New KJV]
34- “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.
35- For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’;
36- and a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’
37- He who loves Father or Mother MORE THAN ME is not worthy of Me.
For anyone that hasn't experienced the reality of this Biblical text, and felt the vitriol of fury from family turning on them like a rabbid animal, or being shunned as an outcast, simply take a Biblical stand against the BLATENT paganism woven into the stronghold of C'mas and Easter. Then alternatively, share the Appointed Feasts given by the Heavenly Father for His people- then promptly brace yourself, and have a teflon heart. The wisdom of the above verses will then shine, and take on life as never before.
Believers seeking to live a set-apart life should be in direct relationship with Truth, and voluntarily submit to it; there's no competition with anyone. The biggest challenge for most believers is finding the courge to go against the grain of pagen inspired manmade traditions, and culturally accepted norms. Most certainly Yeshua will sort out who the "brethren" (family) are. Until then, we're to stay single-minded, and expect the world to view us as a peculiar oddity, if truly walking set-apart as we're told to do.
Knowing Truth but being cowardly and not living it out, refusing to take a stand, is a dire choice that bears monumental, irreversable repercussions. We would be wise to feed the way of righteousness, by honoring all the Word of YHVH; to bear the cross of "being different," and starve out the internal corruption of systemic earthly programming that leads to becoming spiritually barren.
If this has resonated with you, or encouraged your heart in some way, please leave a comment to let me know you were here. I love SO much to hear from your heart perspective too!