Week after week, those who call themselves "blessed" invite me to come pray at their church. But with so many different Christian churches, how can I tell which one God approves of? So I searched the Bible for Jesus's teachings on praying in church. In Matthew 6:5-6 Jesus says:
5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
So what's Jesus trying to tell us? Do people only go to church to be seen by other people? Are their only thoughts on what others think of them? Do they get big rewards for praying in front of others? There sure is a lot of rewarding going on every Sunday from what I can see! Is this why America is the world's richest nation? Is this how people are surviving the recession? Why do they not share their rewards?
Why do people do this if Jesus spoke against it? Do they seek their rewards at church because church income isn't taxed? Why are the churchgoers so proud of what they do if Jesus isn't? Why does the Church not teach the people the words of Jesus? Better yet, why can the people not read it for themselves?
So is Jesus saying that I should only pray in the closet? What will God think when I come out of the closet? Does God not speak out against homosexuals in the Old Testament? Should I take a girl in the closet with me so God will know I'm straight? What all does my Father see in secret? Does He work with the CIA? MI6? KGB? Mossad? What kind of open reward will I receive? Will I be taxed on it? Does the IRS see in secret too?
Would Jesus be pissed at me if I went to church for the big rewards sometimes? Is Jesus more tolerant of the grand reward seekers during the recession?