Holy? Obedient? Salty? Backslidden? Worldly? or
Just Plain Lost—a Hypocrite—a Pretender?
So how would you characterize your spiritual condition—your “Christianity”? Can a person live worldly (pleasing self) and be a real Christian at the same time? Is the claim to be a Christian (a child of God by spiritual birth) of any value, or even believable, if the actions of the one proclaiming such a relationship do not honor God by a life of obedience to every word out of His mouth?
What kind of a relationship can you have with a dead cat or dog? Hmm-m, the book of James declares that faith in God without accompanying obedient life-actions is dead/worthless/of no value (and like the dead animal it begins to stink!). Faith without obedience is not saving faith, but mere head-knowledge with maybe a bit of religious ritual thrown in. At spiritual birth, God’s new child receives the desire and the power to make the tough choices to obey Him—even when we do not feel like it.
Too many Christians, even preachers and Sunday School teachers, excuse their disobedience to God assuring themselves that God will forgive them. They minimize their sin and harmful influence saying they are not really hurting anyone else. The attitude of some seems to be, “What can I get away with?” rather than, “Do or die, I will obey God.
Non-believers can follow their so-called conscience which may let them “solve” their “problems” the way the world does, but we must remember that man has a wicked heart which will lead us astray from God’s plan for our lives. In order to have real peace and to receive God’s blessings, Christians must seek His will (clearly found in the Bible) and obey Him. He is the only One Who knows the long-lasting consequences of today’s choices.
A word of warning to any Christian in the process of choosing to disobey God: He allows you to make the choice to sin, but the choice of what bitter consequences you may reap and be forced to endure because of that sin belong to Him alone. As one who has been chastised by God, I can verify that He gets the job done of convincing His errant child to get back on the straight-and-narrow and never stray again. As 2 Corinthians 7:10 says, “Godly sorrow works repentance.” The sorrow God brings into our lives is to turn us back to Him and is for our good.
Check us Out
Since last October Bro. June’s sermons have been filmed and posted on YouTube by our youngest son Joshua. Just type “GODTEL sermons” into the search window on YouTube and it will give you a list of all 45 that have been posted so far.
We have Gospel music CDs by the June Gentry Family, studies about the scientific evidences supporting Creation, teachings on Faith by Bro. Manley Beasley, and other literature which can help with spiritual growth.
Creation vs. Evolution
This month, we interrupt our series on the scientific evidences of an intelligently-designed act of Creation, to reprint a timely article from World, a Christian magazine. The article concerns the tendency of Americans, including many so-called Christians, who are more interested in being politically correct, appearing intelligent, modern, and part of the “in-crowd” than in pleasing our Creator and abiding by His commands. When being right by God’s definition brings scorn, rejection or discomfort, many choose self gratification and go along with the world.
Blog from a Christian Friend
Just a few days ago someone asked me if I was going to keep my son in cub scouts/boy scouts after the recent decision they made about homosexuals. I honestly had not thought about taking my son out due to this decision. Is leaving my son in scouts wrong? Am I implying that I agree with homosexuality by leaving him in? I have adult conversations with my children regularly since the divorce. As a Christian parent, I am charged with building strong Christian men and women with good apologetics – there is no time to sugar coat this lost and dying world. Probably a week before I was asked about scouts, I had a conversation with my kids about who defines what is right and wrong – God does. Man tries to redefine right and wrong but this is just our pathetic attempt to be “gods”. We do it personally and governmentally. This does not change the fact that God created us and God defines what is right and wrong. He gets to do that because He is the Creator.
Then the conversation went to how Christians are being called haters now because we follow God and His Word. I told them that persecution has always been around but it is increasing as our society turns further away from God. I told them that I pray fervently that they will be saved by grace through faith in Christ. I told them that if they are saved then their lives will not be easy. We will be tempted to allow sin to be redefined by man but together with Christ we can face all things, we can do all things. If we do not stand with Christ then we are standing with the world and against God. Do I hate sin? Yes and according to God sexual immorality is a sin which includes homosexuality.
So, what are Christians supposed to do with sin? Are we tasked with seeking out and destroying sin in the world? I perceive the answer to that question to be a bit complicated, so start with 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 and maybe we can discuss it another week or over lunch/dinner. I do know that I am tasked with seeking out and destroying sin in my life and there is a lot including fights against sexual immorality. I am also tasked with making the church holy by helping the members of the church seek out and destroy sin in their lives – whatever that sin may be (Galatians 6:1). Just so no one is confused, I was once a lost, sexually immoral, greedy, drunk, stealing, verbally abusive idolater (6 out of 10 sins listed in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11! – wait that’s not good) but I have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus (hurray! – that is very good!). I am not claiming to be cured, just redeemed, because I know I will fight these sins in my flesh until Father God takes me home.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11: Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! The sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, passive homosexual partners, practicing homosexuals, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, the verbally abusive, and swindlers will not inherit the kingdom of God. Some of you once lived this way. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
1 Corinthians 3:11-15: For no one can lay any foundation other than what is being laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, each builder’s work will be plainly seen, for the Day will make it clear, because it will be revealed by fire. And the fire will test what kind of work each has done. If what someone has built survives, he will receive a reward. If someone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss. He himself will be saved, but only as through fire.
Lord, we love You and want our work to glorify You. — PB