I’m sure you’ve noticed that there are hundreds of variations of Christian theology. There is much disagreement about very important doctrines. And everyone defends their own viewpoint, of course. How can we know that what WE believe is true if there are many others who believe that THEIR VERSION of Christianity is true? I like the answer below. It’s what I’ve experienced.
The question is, has your beliefs made the “abundant life” Jesus promised a reality, or are you still searching and trying to experience it? Many tend to be very critical of those believers appearing to be joyful and full of life because they perceive these believers as lazy and indifferent in comparison to all of the efforts they (religious folks) are making to find joy and life. To these critical unhappy religious folks, anyone claiming joy in the Lord must be lying because they perceive these joyful believers as making minimal efforts in the Christian life. The truth is, they fail to see that the believer is simply enjoying what already belongs to them, but the religious person is too busy “trying” to enjoy what they do not perceive as already theirs. They believe joy and life comes through agonizing efforts to perform and abstain from as many sins as possible, as they live a sin-conscious life. The sad truth is that 5-years from now is to find that same religious person still “trying” to find peace and assurance.
For the last year, I’ve been one of those who has enjoyed “what already belongs to me” rather than to try to work for it, thinking I must get it for myself.