And talk about rules. We were Wesleyan Methodists. Strict. We had rules about rules. More rules than you could shake The Good Book at. And that brings me to the post title today. You know what 10 to the tenth power looks like, numerically? Here ya go ...
Am I exaggerating? Okay, maybe a little. But the point is, this religious upbringing--all the rules, the 'don't do these things' or you go to hell--it took all the life and love and fun out of the true freedom available through having a real, living relationship with God. It was not spiritual, it was ...
So. Here's an abbreviated list of what you are not to ever--if you are trying to get to heaven through good works and perfection of behavior--EVER be caught doing!
8. Thou shalt not sing songs of the world. They are of the Devil, and humming along with them, giving lip service to their lyrics, can lead to tapping of the feet, which is again, rhythmic, and leads one down the unrighteous path of being tempted to dance.
9. Thou shalt not ever enter into a movie theater. Those are gathering places of heathens, where shameless, vile stories are smeared across large screens, searing virgin minds, ears and eyes with wicked images. Scornful images, of lust, violence, savagery, nudity and wanton gluttonry and debauchery. Even if a so-called "Christian" movie is showing, enter not this den of iniquity, nor ever give any money over to such a foul industry.
10. Thou shalt place thine Bible in a prominent place in thine household, so that all who enter in may see it proudly displayed. This is evidence and witness of, and a testament to, your true faith as a believer. And never, ever, under any circumstances, place anything atop the Bible! Doing so places undo pressure on the Word, suffocating the life out of it! Might as well throw it away after such despicable debasing. And then go straight to hell too.
Oh, and one more thing. The Wesleyan Methodist Way is the only true way. All other religions, and all other sects within the Christian religion, are deadly, dead wrong. They are, all of those misguided, lost souls, going to hell. And we are the only ones who are going to heaven. As such and thus, we have the authority--and we are the only ones with this divine authority--to judge and condemn others.
And all the people said, "Amen!"