Contrary evidence, “Shincheonji teaches weird topics that are strange and unorthodox?”
“Shincheonji teaches weird topics that are strange and unorthodox?”
The statement above states that Shincheonji teaches “weird topics that are strange and unorthodox.” In order to make this statement true it needs to be verified and supported by the Bible–meaning the assertion must be Biblical.
Before we believe in a claim, we must question its validity. In this case we should ask ourselves, “Why is it weird? What makes it strange? What is truly orthodox and unorthodox?” In order to answer this we must look inside the Bible and then we can see if the claim should be believed or not.
If we look inside the Bible, even the teachings of Jesus can be misunderstood as weird, strange, and unorthodox.
Let’s take a look at the ministry of Jesus when he was teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. This is what Jesus said in John 6:51-58.
“I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” Then the Jews began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your forefathers ate manna and died, but he who feeds on this bread will live forever.” (NIV 1984).
In this passage Jesus told the Jews and the disciples that they must eat Jesus’ flesh and drink His blood in order to have eternal life. Here it is important that we put ourselves in the perspective of the people living at that time in order to understand this in a better way. We also have to remember that at this time Jesus was also known as the “ringleader of the Nazarene sect” and “demon-possessed” (Acts 24:5; John 8:52; John 10:20). Therefore, the people already gave Jesus a negative label at the time. Additionally, Jesus’ teachings were perceived as “new” at the time as it is stated in Mark 1:27-28, “The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, “What is this? A new teaching—and with authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits and they obey him.” News about him spread quickly over the whole region of Galilee.”
With this in mind, what Jesus said about eating his flesh and drinking his blood in order to have eternal life can be viewed as a strange, weird, and even an unorthodox teaching to the Jews and even the disciples at the time. For example, when Jesus’ disciples heard this they said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” (John 6:60). Consequently, many of Jesus’ disciples left him as it states in John 6:66, “From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.”(NIV 1984).
If we put ourselves in shoes of those who heard these words would we also consider what Jesus said as weird and thus leave him? Jesus said one must eat his flesh and drink his blood in order to have eternal life. Aren’t we, as Christians, seeking after God, Jesus, heaven and eternal life? Did not Jesus state in John 14:21, “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” Isn’t it Jesus’ command for believers to eat his flesh and drink his blood?
Now let us put ourselves back in the shoes of those who lived in the time of Jesus’ ministry again. Would you have fully labeled what Jesus said at the time as orthodox and normal? Or would you have been one of the many who labeled what Jesus taught as weird, strange, and unorthodox.
Jesus’ words can be seen as weird, strange, and unorthodox if one does not truly understand what he says. If the Jews and the disciples that left him truly understood what Jesus meant by eating his flesh and drinking his blood, then wouldn’t the disciples have stayed and the Jews recognize that Jesus was the messiah?
Although Jesus’ teachings was considered strange and weird to many, even to the point where many of his disciples left him, Jesus was the one who was orthodox. Those who were not labeled as strange and weird were actually unorthodox in the perspective of God. These people who had the unorthodox teachings were the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, who were also the ones calling Jesus a ringleader of the Nazarene sect.
This is why we must be fully equipped with the correct and true understanding of the scriptures before we believe in a claim or even judging one as either orthodox or unorthodox. Therefore, let us really pray and ask God that He would allow us to truly discern what is orthodox and unorthodox, looking beyond what may look strange and weird in the eyes of man, and guide us to someone who can truly impart that wisdom.