Keeping It Simple

Many have a poor view of Christianity because they see it as complicated. Understandably so because in one small town, you have over 50 churches all having different beliefs, different practices, different paths to salvation; yet, all churches claim they are following the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Are their 50 different ways to enter Christ’s Kingdom? Jesus says no. “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber… Then Jesus said to them again, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them’” (John 10:1,7-8). The Lord says that He is the only door that leads to salvation. There are other doors available, but they are like thieves and robbers. These doors deceive you into believing they lead to Jesus when they actually lead to something else.

Paul talks about this issue with the Corinthians. Paul had taught them the gospel years ago, but men began teaching different things from what they had heard from the Apostle themselves.
“Oh, that you would bear with me in a little folly—and indeed you do bear with me. 2 For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!” (2nd Cor. 11:1-4)

These that preached another Jesus had corrupted the simplicity that is in Christ. That isn’t to say that everything that Christ taught was easy and quick to understand. It means that the Lord set up the gospel where everyone and anyone could understand it. Men who get involved creating the gospel just complicate things.

Paul gives the example of how Satan complicated the one rule God had for Adam and Eve in the garden. God told Adam if you eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you will die. It is very simple: eat of this tree, you die. Satan comes in and deceives Eve into believing that God’s simple rule had some other principles that Eve did not know about. Satan first says that God’s warning was an empty threat. He says if you eat of the tree, you with NOT die! How often do we read New Testament passages today and people clarify God’s warnings with saying “God would never do that,” “God will not actually do that,” or “He is just testing us here.” Well, to keep things simple, Satan did the same thing. He then told Eve that if she ate, she would become like God. So now he makes things even more complicated by saying that this sinful behavior, that God specifically said not to do, is going to make her Godly. Satan corrupted the simplicity that is in God’s law.

When we read a passage in the New Testament, we come to an understanding of what it simply says. If someone tells us that there are more principles not listed there that nullify that passage, let us be warned of great possible danger. Let us ask him to show us in God’s word where God nullifies that passage. If he cannot produce a bible passage to prove his point, then it is possible that he is corrupting the simplicity that is in Christ. Instead, let us always consult God’s word for what we believe. Paul says that scriptures were given to us by God to equip us with every good work. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Tim. 3:16-17) Let us keep things simple and allow God to be the final authority on His will.

—Andrew Smith