Snyder, George L Snyder, Lenore Snyder, God, ethics, morals, religion

The Elephant Speaks
One Man’s Elephant book II

The Message to Me


            Do not read any further. Destroy this page now, before I corrupt you further.


            If the messages credited to Jesus are valid, is it important that Jesus was God or even the Son of God? I am not saying that you should not believe that. I am just saying that the messenger is not as important as the message. Remember, I may be an atheist, but may be able to accept the message even if I do not accept the messenger. Is it really important that Jesus even existed if the message is valid? If I am an atheist but accept the message of love and responsibility of Jesus, and live that life, am I not living closer to what God desires than those who ‘thump’ their Bible and tell you that you are destined for Hell?




And, God speaks to me:


          “Once you accept My love, grace, and forgiveness; you freely act in the manner I wish. Then you do My will. Any way you see to follow Me is good. If another follows Me along a different path, that too is good.




            I was told that I was going to Hell. It was a ‘man of the cloth’ who told me so. It was within the walls of a ‘house of God’ that I was told so. He started by asking, “Are you saved?”


            The only answer he would have found acceptable had to be an enthusiastic affirmative response. Throw in an “Amen!”


            What I could have said is, “I’m sorry, perhaps I can help you with your faith problem.”




            What is the real mission of a ‘man of God?’


            Shouldn’t he be telling me how to get to heaven?


            Shouldn’t he be telling me about salvation?


            Shouldn’t he be telling me of God’s love?


            Shouldn’t he be telling me of God’s forgiveness?




If you believe the following, then there should be no question.


1.         God is infinitely powerful.

2.         God is merciful and wants the salvation of all people.

3.         Jesus was sent to Earth as a sign of God’s salvation for all people.

4.         God cannot fail in anything He attempts to do.




            Once upon a time, many years ago, in the dark ages of religion, I had a friend who insisted that I attend church with her. I do not remember the message given from the pulpit, but I clearly remember the message that was presented at the end of the service. My friend requested that I meet the preacher personally, so I was introduced.


            “Have you been saved?”


            Now, this is the type of question to be answered thoughtfully. I had been raised in a Christian environment and wondered if this was a trick question. After all, Christians believe that Jesus came to save all people. They also believe that Jesus is/was God or at least the Son of God. Christians believe that God wants all people to be saved. As God, Jesus could not fail in any endeavor. I must be included in there somewhere. This man as a ‘Man of God’ should know all this.

            I suppose I hesitated too long while running this through my mind. He decided I was not saved and the conversation went downhill from there. Finally, he told me that I was going to go to Hell.

            I had become quite irritated by this man who obviously did not know his own professed faith. I lost what little courtesy I still had. Perhaps my response was too harsh:

            “I can go to any bar and find a drunk to tell me to go to Hell, I don’t need to come to church for that.”


I suppose he is still praying for my soul.


Now, what was the message he gave to me?


And, what message did I return to him?


And, what do you think is the message for you who read this?


Religion should not be oppressive,


Religion should be liberating.




Am I going to hell if I do not believe exactly as you?


If so, then you are going to hell if you do not believe exactly as me!




We are all blind men, and cannot see the elephant.




            If you are one of those who believe that Jesus was/is God, then great for you.


Just do not forget

          None of his followers called him God. They all called him Teacher or Rabbi.

          Even the term Messiah does not mean God, only the one sent by God.

          Jesus did not call himself God. He did call God Father, but then so do we whenever we say the Lord’s Prayer.


Do not believe that the Deity of Jesus is more important than the message of Jesus. Without the example of His life, Jesus would have been an empty, worthless god.

Still no lightning strike.

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