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By Garrett Pekar
A house divided against itself cannot stand.
Christianity contains many different churches and denominations. Roman Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, Methodist and Brethren are just a few. One could even argue that non-denominational is a denomination in itself.
Which of these is truly the way to salvation? Many people are torn apart by the differences in denominations and forget that they are all under one umbrella–Christianity. Christianity should unite, not divide.
It is my belief that God judges all people differently, according to the circumstances of their lives. People should follow the teachings of their denomination and respect those of others’. Catholics should follow Catholic teachings to the best of their abilities, and Baptists should do the same for Baptist teachings.
Most importantly, everyone should focus on following the teachings of Jesus. He taught many lessons through His parables about how to live righteously. Jesus teaches in the New Testament how to become closer to God.
The key to this is becoming closer to other people. It is important to care for all of God’s children. Every person should strive to give compassion to others without wanting anything in return. It is always wrong to hurt someone else for any reason, especially out of envy.
Caring for and helping others is not always easy. In fact, it is often the hardest task imaginable. When someone mocks, hurts, or insults me, my first instinct is to hurt them back. Jesus taught to turn the other cheek and be kind to people despite what they have done. I still struggle to put this into practice, but it is the ultimate display of compassion
Again, I believe God judges every person differently. We are all created to be unique. The experiences one goes through in a lifetime are never the same as anyone else in the world.
A person who is blind from birth can perform more good in a lifetime than someone who has all of the senses but takes them for granted and doesn’t use them to help others.
Someone who is wealthy but only spends money on material things will not find favor in the eyes of God. However, someone who gains riches and donates a great deal of them to charities or gives them to other people who are less fortunate will surely be rewarded by God for such compassion.
People are different. God created us this way, so it is only right that He would judge every person uniquely. An earthly set of standards for reaching heaven does not exist because they are different for each person. A poor man can reach heaven just as much as a rich man can. It’s what we do with what we’re given by God that shows Him our true worth.