How Can You Pass Such Harsh Judgment on the Amish?
By Joe Keim
April 1, 2012
JACK: I'm sorry but I do not understand your views. If a person believes, he believes and is saved (John 3:16) and if you believe, you will try to live a good life, helping others. None is without sin. I am sure you have sinned and will sin again.
JOE ANSWERS: The Bible talks about two different groups of believers. "Head believers" and "heart believers."
Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover, in the Feast Day, many believed in His name, when they saw the miracles which He did.
Why did many believe in his name? Because they had just seen Jesus do a bunch of miracles.
If we stopped there, it would seem as if they were believers. Right? Before you say yes, lets continue.
Two verses later.
but Jesus did not commit Himself unto them, because He knew all men, and needed not that any should testify of man: for He knew what was in man.
Why didn't Jesus commit Himself to them? Because He could see past all the outward fluff and right into the heart of man. BIG difference!
1st Samuel 16:7
But the Lord said unto Samuel, look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.
He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. But as many as received Him, to them gave He power [or the right] to become the sons[children] of God...
Who has the power to be called one of Gods children? The one who received Him [Jesus]. How do you receive Jesus? By believing in Him. It's the kind of believe that Paul talks about in Romans 10:9:
"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved"
JACK: You are the only person that I know of that has left the Amish with such harsh judgment, saying such terrible things like they are not saved.
JOE ANSWERS: I am only comparing their belief/religion with Scripture. The most religious people in the New Testament were the Pharisee's. Jesus called them Vipers, and full of dead man's bones.
True salvation is not found in man-made religion...see Col 2:6-10, but by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ...see Acts 4:12.
Do you remember what Jesus said right before He died? He said three words, "IT IS FINISHED". What's finished? The payment for sin. Jesus will never have to come back and die for sin again! No one else will have to come and die for sin again! It's finished!
Also, do you realize that when Jesus paid for the sin penalty He paid it all! He did not make the down payment and hand you and me an installment book, saying: "Please keep up the payments". No! He paid the account in full!
Millions of religious people will suffer in hell because they thought they had to keep making payments on their own.
Billy Graham said it this way: all the good in the world will not buy a person one minute of time in heaven. Salvation is a gift. A gift is free, an it must be received.
JACK: Now I do admit, you have more firsthand knowledge of Amish life than I do because you were born and raised Amish and I was born and raised Baptist.
JOE ANSWERS: Someone put it this way, if you want a Big Mac you go to McDonalds; if you want a Whopper you go to Burger King. I, myself chose Baptist because that is what I desire.
JACK: If I were to get mad at the Baptist church, should I say that most Baptists are not saved?
JOE ANSWERS: No doubt, there are people in our Baptist churches who are not saved. The Baptist denomination does not save people. I believe there are some Amish people that are saved and still going to the Amish church.
JACK: We are not God and cannot say who is and who is not saved.
JOE ANSWERS: You are right, but the Bible does says we can know them by their fruits...Mat 7:16.
1 JOHN 4:6: We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the Spirit of Truth, and the spirit of error.
JACK: I myself, have not been to church in years because I feel the churches today are more like a club, political organization or business and most of the people go to church for the wrong reasons.
JOE ANSWERS: Hebrews 10:25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
JACK: They drive their big SUV's, Lincoln's, wear their fancy clothes but would not help someone in need unless they profited from it or could hold the person up as a prize saying "Look what I've done, I've helped this man, I am such a good Christian, let me in heaven" If Jesus were to come back today as a man, what church do you think he would attend? What kind of car do you think he would drive?
Do you think he would wear a Rolex watch, big diamond rings and strut around on the pulpit, putting on a show like we see some of the preachers of today doing? I don't think he would, it's not his style. Nor do I think Jesus would go to an Amish church, speak only German where outsiders are not welcome. But I can understand why the Amish do not accept outsiders so fast: People go on expensive tours just to see how they live and they don't want their church to become a place where people go to stare at them like they are a sideshow.
Church should be salom, sacred and respected I almost forgot, we also have the big holiness or Pentecostal churches who think they are special and better than anyone else because they speak in unknown tongues. Their preacher can really put on a show, jumping, screaming, etc. And they have some really upbeat music, too, just like in a bar. It can and does really stir up people's emotions.
JOE ANSWERS: Why is it that everyone likes to compare themselves with another person in the church? You can always find a weaker or more imature convert in any Bible believing church. We are to compare ourselves with the Savior. Not each other!
Romans 14:11-12: For it is written, as I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.
JACK: My wife is from Germany and she once saw a gospel quartet. She did not see how they could be from a church and thought the music and the show they put on was like in a nightclub or a country music concert.
JOE ANSWERS: We are living in a very selfish day. Everything is about "ME, MYSELF AND I". We want to be entertained. But again I can't help but think once again of Romans 14:11-12 (above)
JACK: II know this letter is long and you probably won't read it all but it's hard to say what you feel in a few short words. If you don't mind, tell me what made you leave the Amish, what church do you go to today, do you think leaving the church, going into "the world" and losing your family was worth it?
JOE ANSWERS: I am going to the same church I started going to when I left the Amish in 1987. It is an independent Baptist Church that has a tremendous heart for the lost people of this world.
The reason I left the Amish in 1985 is because I got born again. There was no doubt in my mind that I was born again. There still isn't. When I began to see how the Amish church was excommunicating others who had come to Christ, I knew that I could no longer live as one of them. The day I left, I cried for hours.
I have never been invited to any of my brother or sister's weddings. Nor have I been to any family gatherings of any sort in the past 20 years, since I left the Amish. It's not because I didn't want to, but because the Amish church says that if you break away from the church you are not allowed back for any kind of fellowship.
Just this morning, I ran into my dad and mom in town and they refused to say one word to me. My mom looked at me and smiled. That was it! ALL in the name of religion! They know I have been very faithful in church and in the Lord's work, but until I denounce my stand in Jesus Christ and Him alone for salvation and come back to the Amish church and repent, I will never be accepted as part of the family.
You asked the question above "do you think leaving the church, going into 'the world' and losing your family was worth it?" First of all we have to define what is the world:
1st John 5:4-5 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
Matthew 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.
Matthew 19:29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for My name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.
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