Some people who were raised in Church seem to be desensitized to the issue of lostness. They go to church gatherings and worship God while they wait for Him to save others or send some new members from other churches. For many this is the pattern they have witnessed from their parents and pastors.
I was not raised in Church. I was lost until I was twenty years old. Then a co-worker gave me and my sister tickets to see Heavens Gates and Hells Flames at Ridgecrest Baptist Church in Dothan, AL. That night I gave my life to Jesus Christ and by His grace was forever changed.
With very little discipleship I struggled with why people were not living out the commands of Jesus. When I asked my pastor about this he told me it was “sadly because most people in the church were lost.” I take full responsibility for the mistakes I’ve made along the way but I do believe that with proper encouragement and discipleship I could have come much further in my walk much faster.
For those whose minds just jumped to “God is in control so you are overthinking things just trust Him and don’t worry.” I wonder how Paul would have felt about that train of thought as he corrected the Church and told them that they “should” be eating meat but that they were still in need of milk. I guess the Holy Spirit forgot to chill out as He inspired those words, because God is in control?
This leads me to the issue that I find most troubling in the Church today. That is the lack of personal responsibility for being obedient to the commands of Christ while blaming God’s sovereignty. Maybe you’ve never heard of this problem so you fail to see its importance but it is epidemic and it may currently be the most widely used tool of Satan.
From the beginning Satan has taken the Words that God has intended for our good and twisted them to cause us to rebel against God’s commands. It began in the garden and it continues today. When we read in the Bible about the gospel for which we are to be willing to suffer persecution and death we hear Satan saying “Did God really say that.” He tells us to relax and enjoy the sunshine, after all God’s in control.
What is God in control of? Was God in control when the books of the Bible were written? Was God in control of the words that are contained in its pages? The Word of God tells us to pray, to study, to tell others, to teach, to give sacrificially, it tells us to lay down our lives and store up treasure in Heaven and not on earth. The Word of God tells us that Jesus died for all and that in order for a person to be saved they must hear the Word of God.
The Word of God could not be more clear it says we are all going to be held accountable for how we have handled its teachings. Are you familiar with the story of the prophet who was told by God to go into a land a certain way and leave a certain way and God told him not to stop at anyone’s home. As he was leaving the land another man claiming to also be a prophet of God told him to return to his house and eat. He told him that God said so, but still God killed the prophet who disobeyed Him.
You are not going to be able to say “My pastor or this theologian told me that it was okay to ignore your commands because you are sovereign.” Will God hold false teachers accountable? Yes! But He has left His Word and His Holy Spirit so that no one is going to have an excuse. You must examine the Word and test all Spirits.
I pray that you will open your eyes to the Word of God. Our family, friends, and neighbors are lost and on their way to a very real, eternal place called Hell. We must obey all the commands of Jesus if we are to be His witnesses. We must take the problem of lostness seriously.
If you want to make excuses as to why I take things too seriously you have the freedom to twist God’s Word. Just use the one about not worrying because apparently God meant that verse to be the trump card over all of His commands. God forgive us for the false beliefs we willingly endure.
Once I realized that God had set me from from eternal damnation and that Jesus was willing to set free all who believe I could no longer ignore the truth. It has taken me much too long to get to the point I am at but I will not go back. Though none go with me I still will follow.
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; (2 Corinthians 10:5)
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For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward. (2 Corinthians 1:12)
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