Letter 2 to a Buddhist co-worker

 

Thank you for your email. About morals, you said that we have what we need already inside. In Christianity, we believe in having a conscience (ryoshin). Do you believe you have a conscience? The word conscience comes from two words “con” + “science”. “Con” means “With” and “Science” means “Knowledge”. So conscience means “with knowledge”. In Christianity, we believe that God has created us with a conscience, a “with knowledge”. For example, a child doesn’t learn how to lie (uso) the child can already do that. Parents teach their children that lying is bad and wrong. A child already knows that stealing and killing are bad, but Parents still have to teach this to the children.

Now let’s go to the Adults, Adults have been taught from parents, school teachers, friends, TV, Music, Movies. There are so many things that can influence an adult. Adults get smart and think they can do it on their own. There is pride, stubbornness, lying, stealing, cheating. If we look deep within ourselves… we might think we are ok…but when we compare to someone who is 100% pure, perfect, holy, and righteous, we might get a different picture. For example, in the Bible, these are the 10 commandments.

1. You shall have no other gods before me.
2. You shall not make any graven images (no idols).
3. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
4. You shall keep the Sabbatth Day Holy.
5. Honor your father and your mother.
6. You shall not steal
7. You shall not kill (murder)
8. You shall not commit adultery
9. You shall not commit false testimony against your neighbor.
10. You shall not covet (desire your neighbors stuff like wife, servant, possessions.)

Let’s find out if we are good people according to these standards….

Have you ever told a lie? If you answered “Yes” then you confess to being a liar(usotsuki). You only need to tell one lie in order to be called a liar.
Have you ever looked at a women with lust? If you answered “Yes”. This is what Jesus said, “If you have looked at a women with lust, then you have committed adultery in your heart.” – The Bible.

Have you ever stolen anything? If you answered “Yes” then you confess to being a thief. (dorobo)

Have you ever hated anyone? If you answered “Yes” …Jesus said, “He who hates his brother is a murderer”. You have confessed to being a “murderer”.

So far we have only looked at a few of the 10 commandments. Like you, I am have confessed to being a liar because I have lied multiple times. I have looked with lust because I used to look lustfully at women and since I looked with lust God saw my intentions and even though I didn’t physically commit adultery I did commit spiritual adultery when I looked with lust at a women. This is God’s standard not my own. I have stolen so I am a thief. I have stolen so many things in my life I can’t even count. I have hated people many times, I have confessed to hating so spiritually I am the same as a murder…Even though I never committed the physical act of murder inside my hatred, God saw my intentions, and hatred means that you want the other person dead so that is spiritual murder and God counts that has as if I actually murdered someone. God’s laws are spiritual and God only knows how evil or how wicked a person really is.

But what about the conscience? Don’t we know what is right naturally? The answer is yes. We have been born with knowing what is right and what is wrong. When we look around the world and in history….we can see that lying, stealing, cheating, murder, etc… are all universally wrong and accepted as wrong. There is no society that ever existed that every accepted lying, stealing, cheating, murders, are ok…no…they are all considered evil and wrong. This also is proof of a conscience in humans.

But aren’t humans capable of loving and being nice? Yes, we are. We are able to do acts of kindness to one another. We can do some degree show acts of love too. However, this displaying of love to another is not going to clear our guilt before a Holy and Righteous God. Even if we do not believe in such as Holy and Righteous God, He exists. He has shown Himself many times by prophecy, miracles, and the Word of God and the Creation of the World and Whole Universe also show the glory of God.

The bottom line is this….the morals come from knowing what is right and what is wrong. The “Knowing” comes from being taught what God’s standards are. His standards are the 10 commandments. …but even if we are taught about the 10 commandments, we can only see how guilty we really are since no one really is 100% pure and righteous except God alone.

This brings us to the next part. How can God demand that we do all these right things when we are weak and human and we can’t even see God..

The answer to this question is Jesus Christ…..

2000 years ago, God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, who is God in human form, to show who God really is. Jesus Christ has a mission. God predicted the coming of the Messiah 700 years even before time changed from AD to BC. In the book of Isaiah, God promised to send His messiah.

Jesus Christ came to earth and lived a perfect life. He never sinned. The religious leaders around him tried to test and make him guilty but Jesus Christ never sinned and there is no record of Jesus sinning. Even by non-Christian resources such as the Jewish Historian Josephus testified about Jesus’s ability to do mighty miracles.

Jesus claimed to be the only One that could save someone from their sins. Jesus Christ was sentenced to die on the cross for our sins as God has prepared as a sacrifice (ikenye). God sent Jesus to pay the price for our sins because God is love and did not want to punish the humans He loves for their sins. God is merciful because He wanted to forgive us of our sins and wants to show us who He is.

God commands all men everywhere to repent (kuiaratame) and believe on Jesus. Trust Jesus Christ to forgive you of yours. Turn from your sins and ask God for forgive you by believing that He sent His Son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for your sins.

Will you do this?

Will you believe that God loves you?

God taught the two greatest commands? Do you know what the Bibles says?

Love the Lord with all of your heart, soul and might and love your neighbor as you love yourself.

This is right and true and if we loved God and loved our fellow man/women around us, all humans, then we would please God and live in the way He wants us to live.

How do we do this? We first need to know God. This is the salvation and having a daily relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

After we have been forgiven of our sins, then we are empowered by God’s Holy Spirit to live the holy, good, life that we should live. God have us life and we should honor God by doing what is right and what please God.

The laws of God are good. The 10 commandments are there for us and we have the very words of God to show us how to live in the Holy Bible.

Here is what the Bible says about love.

And now I will show you the most excellent way.
If I speak in the tongues e of men and of angels,
but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or
a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and
can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I
have a faith that can move mountains, but have not
love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and
surrender my body to the flames, f but have not love, I
gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does
not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of
wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with
the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always
hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies,
they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be

stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For
we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when
perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I
was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I
reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put
childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection
as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am
fully known.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.
But the greatest of these is love. – 1st Corinthians chapter 13

It says “love” is patient, “love” is kind, Love doesn’t envy, Love doesn’t boast.
Love is not proud, Love is not rude, Love is not self-seeking, Love is not easily angered.
Love keeps no record of wrongs…..do you see?

We probably can agree that love is good and right..but we do not have the power to do what is right. Only God can give us the right power, right motive, and right wisdom to live this life. We need to seek God and He will give us what we need.

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all
these things will be given to you as well. – Matthew 6:33

Your friend