If you go to church, you’re a Christian, it does not matter what church, if you go to a church sometime on the weekend, the lost will call you a Christian, or at least assume that you are. And that is all that really matters, isn’t it, what people think about you?
You can cuss and swear, have a few too many drinks occasionally, never once bring up any “religious” stuff, as long as you cross that threshold a couple of times a month, you’re a Christian. It’s not as much as it used to be, a sure sign of these last days, but nearly every church could count on pretty much a full house on Christmas and Easter, the “twice a year” obligation fulfilled.
It always reminded me of the trips to Jerusalem in the Old Testament. Like the one where a twelve-year-old Jesus found it more important to be about His Father’s business than make sure to follow the rules and regulations. (Luke 2:49) Kind of puts an end to the question of whether or not our Lord knew who He was when He was a little kid, doesn’t it?
The fruits of the Spirit mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23 are one of the sure signs of a born-again believer, but they can be faked, fabricated quite easily, it really takes little effort to pretend to be a Christian, like I said, go to church, be a nice guy, especially in public, adhere to the moral laws of the land you live in, dress appropriately, and you can fool just about anybody, even yourself.
The lines have been blurred by most Evangelical churches the last few decades, the moral construct of man intermingling with the commandments of the Scriptures, what was once abhorrent in their eyes is now common practice, “Thus saith the Lord” has been modified to “In my opinion.” Speaking to the lost about their sins is now seen as offensive, becoming friends with the world is expected, for how else can we draw them in, and instead of witnessing to them, well, that is now called inviting them to church. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” (Matt. 28:19)
How’s that discipleship class in your church going, that one-on-one structure, pretty intensive, is it? How long, six months or more? In case you missed it, that was called being sarcastic.
Discipleship classes, one on one interaction, a man of God who is led by the Holy Spirit, knowledgeable in the Scriptures, guiding the younger man to “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,” (Mark 16:15) is basically unheard of these days. Sunday morning, around ten a.m. to ten-thirty, maybe eleven o’clock, that’s called church. Be honest with yourself here, how many of those people that sit in the pews around you every Sunday morning do you believe are actually going to heaven? I can tell you what the Word of God says, “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” (Matt. 7:14)
But we have made a new determination of the word “Christian,” haven’t we, and as it is said, heaven help the one who believes it wise to ask another about their salvation, that questions them about their walk with Christ, how He has been using them, who and how many they have spoken to the previous week about the grace that God offers through Jesus Christ. That is being called judgmental, not adhering to 1 Peter 3:15, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”
I spoke to a gentleman just yesterday who did not feel as if he was doing enough, that he was trying, but not trying hard enough. I suggested to him that he quit trying altogether, and that he start submitting. He was amazed with my reply, the thought had not even crossed his mind, but he recognized it as truth. That’s all there is to it, not a perfect church attendance record, not attempting to fit in with the world so you can reach more people, (definitely not a good idea) just submit to the will and Word of God.