By Fred Pruitt

All that “What ism are you?” is basically distraction. Not that there is not truth or there is no error, but it is deeper than the ism one adheres to. It all goes back to person — how do I “know” God?

Everybody is always trying to figure out this peripheral stuff and debate which side of the fence we are on with the other side, or focus on eschatology, or legalism vs graceism, universalism or the evils of “religion,” and all that does for the most part is serve as a distraction from the one central issue out of which all those others pale in comparison, and that is who are we?

Even “no independent self” can be an ism, until we have in ourselves experienced the full agony of Rom 7, and through that the Spirit carries us out of bondage into the glorious liberty of the “law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus.” (Rom 8:2)

We do not get there*[see note below]* except we lose ourselves, [“Whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath cannot be my disciple.”] The rich young man couldn’t part with his riches, going away sorrowfully, and Jesus finally exclaiming that it was easier to put a camel through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to go into the kingdom of God — which he did then say was impossible with men, but all things possible with God.

So we ask, what riches keep us out? It is the riches of puffed up self! A wrong consciousness of independence, that cannot let itself go, and it is true it cannot, as Paul found out in Rom 7, but Christ can and does pull us through from “wretched man” to Rom 8:2. The Spirit does it.

This is really kind of getting to first base. Anything less is walking in the wilderness of separation afraid to touch the smoking mountain. But as the adage I recently heard says, there is a place where there are two doors. One door, “Heaven,” stood open and hardly anyone was going in. The other door, “Seminar on Heaven,” was busy and the room inside was full of people.

Isms are of the seminar. Life just IS, and isn’t contained in an ism, but in the wide impregnable country of Christ. That’s the “heaven” door, and few it seems to be who seek it, but God knows what He is doing, bringing us along day by day.

*”There” refers to the fulness of “Christ formed in us,” or “the Promised Land,” and not meant to reflect on a person’s “salvation.”

5 thoughts on “Distraction

  1. Indeed, there appear to be so many ‘Dis-Tractions’ along the Way, which the thief has set up for the self-centered vessel to so desperately try and navagate through to get to the “Promised Land”. Flashy offramps with signs, “LAW”, “Works of The Flesh”, “Shortcut to Salvation”, “No Faith Required”, and “Salvation on Your Terms” dot the landscape of destruction piled high with deceived souls…

    “Dis-Tractions lead to Dis-Truction”

    The above picture breaks my heart, for I so desire for all to know Christ and how good He is.

    So, How do we be transformed from being “self-centered” to “Christ-centered”?
    “What must we do to do the works God requires?”…Answer: “Believe in the One He sent”
    The Captain of our salvation says, “Except you be as little children, you will not enter the Kingdom of God”.

    From ‘ism’ to ‘IAM’…one letter- can be such a long journey.

  2. Thanks for all the wonderful words you share Fred. This just reminds me that I tend to forget with my feeble mind that could it be, that I still search for “A Finished Work” on Christ’s behalf and therefore create my own ism’s to follow instead of Christ.

    • I suppose you could say that, Phillip, if you could operate as an independent entity, but you are now operated by Christ, so confess that, instead of this “feeble mind” stuff which you are not. Of course all that stuff comes as a temptation, and the devil says because you consider it you are “creating your own isms” but he is a liar, Phillip. You are Christ expressing Himself perfectly through your perfected humanity (spirit, soul, body) that He cherishes so much He has taken up residence there (in you AS you) to express Himself and His love perfectly. Get over the misleading incompletion of Phillip Morris and see the completion of the union of Christ in you! Phillip + Christ = Phillip. If you have a “feeble mind,” guess whose mind that is? See the union, Phillip, not the separation. CHrist is Himself the “finished work” and you do not do anything “on Christ’s behalf” — He is now your totality, so quit confessing the opposite!

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