Romans 8:8 says “Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” And we also know that “without faith it is impossible to please Him” (Hebrews 11:6)
How does one please God then? Only with our mind?
Of course we are to use our body for good deeds, however, those actions should be out of a belief and trust in God. Unfortunately, there are many people that believe and trust in themselves and attempt to please God by deeds. Instead of looking to Christ to be our righteousness, they look to add righteousness by doing great feats, alas, not knowing that even our best works are but filthy rags.
Here are three of the most dangerous behaviours by which people try to earn Gods favor and atone for sin. By dangerous, I mean physically, though if that is what a person relies on for salvation, I’d say their soul is in far greater danger. (And no these doesn’t work, so dont try this at home.).
HURTING SELF TO PLEASE GOD.
Since the 13th and 14th century (and probably earlier) there have been groups of “christians” that practice self-flagellation. That means they use a whip, sometimes with spikes, to beat their body until blood ran down their backs. This was considered a true demonstration of piety, a true example of goodness and denying the flesh. Today there are still many (notably some catholics) that are involved in this practice. It is reported that Pope John Paul II would whip himself with a belt to get “closer to Jesus.” Likewise some Shiite Muslims also inflict bloody wounds on themselves in hopes of gaining goodwill from allah.
It is a sad shame that some Christians believe hurting themselves will somehow please God, as if He is pleased with causing us pain, grief, and sorrow. Christ came that our Joy may be full, even in suffering, so please dont inflict any kind of suffering to earn His love.
Yes. Some people get crucified too. And no, I don’t mean figuratively by other church-members, nor 2000 years ago as martyrs out of love for Christ; I mean, literally and today.
In fact in the philipines and a few other places it is a big deal. People actually get crucified in order to, get this, atone for their sins.
It both sad and scary what a lack of biblical understanding can lead to: in this case a lack of trust that Jesus satisfied Gods Wrath for our sin, therefore making Jesus Christ insufficient.
Now this is just plain freaky. There are “christians” out there who go to church, get their dance on.. and…. start playing with snakes. And not just any snakes, the really creepy poisonous ones (as if regular snakes arent creepy enough.)
I am officially spooked. Don’t watch the videos if you’re scared of snakes.
For the record, George Hensley, one of the founders in the Snake-handling Pentecostal movement was reported to have been bitten over 400 times, and died from a snake bite. Figures.
Heres a clip from the early 1930’s,:
Some involved will go as far as to say you must handle snakes to be saved, others that its proof you are saved, yet you must still handle snakes to prove it (I dont see much of a distinction.) Either way, I rely on one proof and that is the work of Jesus Christ on the Cross and in my life. But sadly, not everyone who calls themselves a Christian shares that with me.