Borrowed Truths

Disappointment

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Disappointment

We all want to be liked, this is one of the rare times that I feel it is appropriate to use absolutes, and of course the word “liked” can be modified to fit the structure of the context, but in its totality for the human race, everyone wants someone to like them. Admire, respect, esteem, the analogy is one of a positive reaction from an individual as opposed to a negative one, to be liked is to evoke an emotion that is favorable towards the one who is seeking it.

“For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.” (Luke 6:32) Christians are not to be in the business of getting people to like them, that is not what we are here for, we are here to spread the Gospel of Christ, to encourage our brothers and sisters in Christ, and not to fit into the ideology of what the world says we are to be. If you are looking to be respected, admired, or liked, you are in the wrong business, that is the way of the world, what you can expect if you seek these things is to be disappointed, and therein is the topic of this letter to you.

Far too many behind the pulpit today are teaching, and far too many of the congregation are believing, that they are to be liked by those in the world, they are mistakenly preaching that friendly is the same as being liked. “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” (Prov. 18:24) There is a big difference between being friendly and searching for the friendship of the world, and here many are in great error. We are not to be of the world, in fact, if you are, you are at enmity with the Lord, (James 4:4) a friend of the world is an enemy with God, but they tend to misplace the truth of this Scripture verse. Unable to put a name to the enemy beyond the word “world,” they will not speak of those in the world by name that we should not associate with, “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators,” (1st Cor. 5:9) “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” (2nd Cor. 6:14) So who are we not to seek the friendship of, who are we to not concern ourselves with on whether they like us or not, unbelievers.

I realize that this is going to come as a disappointment to many of you, but you are not to be associating on a long term, continuous level with unbelievers, you are to love them, pray for them, and speak with them about the words of Christ, but the last thing that should be on your mind is whether or not they like you. This is the fallacy that is being preached today, many are taught and believe, because they will not search out the truths of the Scriptures for themselves, that it is important for people to like them. Get to be their friends first and then bring up the love that Christ has for them is most generally the way that it is brought before the congregation, what did you expect from the adversary, truth? They are not supposed to be your friends, you are to be friendly, big difference.

So where does the disappointment come into play here, well, if the word of God is truth, then you are going to need to have a conversation with those you call your friends that are still in the world. There are the saved and the lost, there is no such thing as a carnal Christian, one who has decided to live in both the kingdom of God and the world at the same time, there are those who have yet to reach a level of maturity in the Lord, and for these there is still no excuse, only learning applications. Once the truth has been made known to them, they are expected to adjust their lives accordingly, for those who do not, for those who refuse to adhere to the precepts of Scripture, there are consequences, and each of these are dispersed as the Lord sees fit on an individual basis. If you are in fellowship with those who are unrighteous, if you are continuously in the company of fornicators, if you are trying to be liked by those who are still in darkness, then you are not doing what you have been commanded to do, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.” (Eph. 5:11)

Now is when you have to make a decision, and of course as with anything that is going to modify our walk with the Lord in a drastic and live changing way, fervent prayer will be needed. If you follow through with this, you will feel sadness and possibly regret, for the ones that we are speaking about may have been close friends for a majority of your life, and leaving a friend behind is never easy. And herein is where you get to decide, you have been shown the truth, what you do with it is what God has always allowed us to do, make a decision based on your own free will. My responsibility is to the Word of God, not to change lives, that is Christs responsibility, but as it was when the Lord raised Lazarus from the dead, He told those present to roll back the stone, when He could have just as easily done that Himself also. Which is easier, to roll back the stone of our lives and release those things inside that are dead, those items that of are no value to our Lord, or to leave the stone in place, knowing that what is inside is starting to smell, and it is the nostrils of Almighty God that is the recipient of that odor.

You do not have to do this, no one is going to force you, the problem is, now that you know the truth, what are you going to do about it. No one is expecting you to go over to your best friends house, your sisters or mothers house and tell them that it is time for your relationship with them to come to an end, that you are not even going to answer their phone calls anymore, but you need to come to the point in your walk with Christ that understands and applies what His Word commands us to do, have no communion, fellowship, continuing, ongoing relationship with those that are still in darkness.

It is difficult, in fact disappointing in a way, I know, I have done this and continue to do it on a regular basis. There are those that I have known for a very long time that I no longer associate with save for the occasional small talk, and those few moments of conversation nearly always reminds them that I am in service to the Lord God, and their friendship is of no importance to me, save that which I pray He will give them ears to hear with. They are no longer my friends, they are no longer my family, and until and if they accept Christ as Lord, they will never be. Were they disappointed, yes, were they understanding, not in the least, for they cannot discern my actions, for they are spiritually discerned, they cannot understand why anyone would leave the world and all that is in it, especially those that they have called friend, for one whom they cannot see, much less comprehend of His existence. They are still blind, I am not, but still they refuse His calling to them, and until they do, this is how it is to be.

“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Rom. 12:2) Conformed means to be a part of, willingly and of our own free will, and this does not just mean the way that the world system is evolving, but the human beings in it. Those who are not in the light are those who want you to stay in the darkness, every time that you are around those in the darkness, your light is to shine, if it is not, then you have to ask yourself why it isn’t. Are you ashamed, embarrassed, are you more concerned with what your friends would think of you than what the One you say you serve would think about you. “For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!” (1st Cor. 9:16)

Did you think yourself not to be a preacher, what would you call those then that profess the name of our Lord to all that will listen, did you believe that the one who stands behind the podium was the only one who is to put forth the good news of the gospels? The only thing that I can say is that if your friends do not know that you are saved by the grace of God, then you have no problem, at least not with them, but if you truly are a born-again believer, then the only one you have a problem with is the One who will require an account on that day from you of why you did not do as you were commanded to do, and He is not accepting of excuse from those who have known the truth.

Disappointment does not always infer failure, in this case it would be just the opposite, it would mean the adherence to that which we have been commanded to do. The only ones who should be disappointed are those who will miss the opportunity to hear of the truths of the Word of God from the one who was once in their midst. Perhaps this is the conviction that they need to see, maybe this is the one final action that will show them that your faith is real, that it is the Lord God that you serve, and by doing so they to will come to know Him as Savior. I do not know, my responsibility is to speak the truths of Scripture, to show others who they are, not to change them, that is Gods place, it is our place to roll back the stone so that He can do the work.       

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