By Melanie J. Knox, Opinion Editor
As I Wish
“God wants me to let you know that doom is imminent … God has told me to warn every American and all the godless, subversive people in the world, … that He is going to destroy all of you soon for your hypocrisy.” (p. 1)
That’s not from the mouth of God, as you should have recognized. Instead it came from the mouth of ‘pastor’ Tony Alamo.
If the name sounds slightly familiar, maybe you noticed the text-heavy, 27-page Alamo World Newsletter flapping under your windshield wiper or between the spokes of your bike on Monday.
Did you read it? If not, I recommend you do so. I hope it inflames you or at least makes you chuckle incredulously. Most of you who read it will probably do just that.
But there is someone out there, possibly on our campus, who believes the false doctrine sloppily splashed across these 27 pages and hundreds more. (There are more newsletters and books.)
Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior. Alamo and I agree on this. The similarity ends there.
For those of you who haven’t read, let’s sum it up.
The sinful world is soon to be ravished by plagues, Rome and all its inhabitants are controlled by Satan and thus control the world like puppets, Clinton is really a Catholic, Bush is a terrorist and a Nazi … the list goes on and on.
I laughed at these views and moved on quite easily through the blackness of print until I came to this quote from a phone conversation about a woman who converted to Alamo’s beliefs:
“She said she has been saved for several years and has been doing all that she has been taught to do to be a Christian.
“She said she had ministers tell her that God is like a washing machine. Every time you get dirty with sin you just get into the Lord and He will wash you clean.
“She said her eyes were opened to the truth when she read your literature where you spoke of a fine line that is crossed once you have received salvation and you sin, that you can’t just keep going back for forgiveness. She said her life is changed now.” (p. 8)
No kidding. She’s probably scared out of her mind that she’s already crossed that line and is headed straight for Hell.
Alamo is a zealot, fanatically slamming down the law on all who cross the line.
To anyone who believes this, hear me now:
Christ brought to us a message of forgiveness, grace and mercy. This crazy scheme was only possible by sacrifice, and he paid it. Christ died for your sins.
Grace will reign in your hearts when Christ does! Read Romans 5 and 6. Paul explains it nicely. We are not to take advantage of grace, to “go on sinning so that grace may increase all the more.” God forbid.
But that doesn’t mean that endless grace won’t cover every sin you commit. Without grace, we would be doomed.
Knowing a kind of love that loves unconditionally and forgives seven times seventy times will not leave you unchanged.
Alamo and his followers live in constant fear of each step they take.
Instead, follow Christ to freedom in love and grace.