Borrowed Truths

Still The Same?

still the same
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Still The Same?

I was once, as we all were, a person that the wrath of God abided on, my actions were vile and contemptable in His sight, I lived for the pleasures of self, I served no master but myself, and that which I desired, I sought to fulfill. Grace is what saved me. I am no longer who I used to be, and the longer I seek the face of God, the less value I can see in myself, I can find nothing in my life that is pleasing to Him, yet He has called me by His grace. The more I look at myself, the less I see any value to the Lord, I am a simple man, I serve no purpose for the world, for I have forsaken all it has to offer, I am rejected by those I meet, for they still live in and for this world, many of those I meet that profess Christ seem to have little desire to speak of Him at length, the cares and concerns of the world, of the immediate, are what they see as important, and to attempt to inform them that these paths of the world they are following are trivial at best, is to invoke rebukes of being too heavenly minded to be of any earthly good.

Such is the life of those born-again believers who have been called out of the sheepfold to go a little further with Christ, “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.” (John 15:18) If you really want to serve Jesus Christ my friends, you have to be willing to go apart from the crowd, you must be willing to sacrifice all for Him. Some who call Him Lord are not willing to do this, they still find security in the world, in themselves, in the company of others, they are not willing to possibly offend by correcting and reproving those who say they love. “A reproof entereth more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool.” (Prov. 17:10) This is not to say all who will not die to self are fools, “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God.” (Psalm 14:1) a fool is a person that orders their life as if there were no God, but ask yourself this, how many individuals do you know that live their lives apart from Christ during the week, but on Sunday morning seem to be of the fold, how many seem to be of the world on Tuesday, but bow their heads when they are in the assembly. Are they who they used to be, or has their heart been changed, are the works of the Spirit visible in them Friday night, or only while in attendance on Sunday morning.

How we handle correction and reproof is a sure sign of the transformation that has occurred in us, when the error of the truths of our ways are revealed to us in the truths of the Word of God, how we accept the correction from a follower of Jesus Christ is a determining factor of the assurance of our salvation. This is not a topic that you will most generally heard preached from the pulpit these days, to question any of their beliefs is to be judgmental, to be seen as contentious, while the wise man considers and rejoices when these areas of his life are brought into the light. (Prov. 6:23) Such is the way of a large portion of Christianity today, to pose questions to those who profess Christ as Lord about their faith, about how the Lord is leading their lives, even in the smallest area of what they are studying in the Scriptures that day, is seen as offensive, and the one asking the questions is automatically seen as judgmental.

Think back here, when was the last time you can recall that even the pastor or other person in a position of authority at your church asked you any of these questions, when was the last time the truth of your faith, the visible traits of your service to Christ was put to the test by anyone from your church. It rarely happens anymore, it is seen as offensive, as “butting in,” as a question that should never be asked, for “That’s between God and me.” Faith in Christ is to be a fact, visible to all those who meet us, ready to be responded to by all who ask, (1 Peter 3:15) it is not a feeling only, it is an action, but many who when asked to give an account of their faith see the one who is asking as not worthy to be given a response to, in fact they are seen as offensive.

If you cannot stand for Christ in the presence of your brothers and sisters in Christ, giving the accounts of how He is using you for His glory, how do you respond to the lost when they approach you. Such is the nature of what we like to call the “Carnal Christian,” today, we give them leeway, letting them believe they are saved when showing no fruits of their salvation, while believing ourselves rude if we question that supposed faith in Christ. It is a vicious circle, one that can only be broken by the man, or woman, of God who is willing to risk seeming offensive by asking questions that others fear to ask.

In its root terminology, what those who are in either side of this trap are doing is seeking the praise of men above the things of God, (John 12:43) they are more concerned with what others will think of them, how they will be perceived instead of how the Lord God views them. All who have been saved by grace should be willing, in fact should understand that they have been commanded to always be ready to give an account of their faith to all who ask, those who cannot do so, who have nothing more to offer to the one who asks than a weekly church attendance as the proof of their salvation, are most generally those who are not truly serving.

You have met these individuals, you know some of them today, the question is, are you one of them, is your faith in Christ available for all to see, are you always prepared to give that account, can you show others your faith by your works? (James 2:18) There are those who will be left behind, those who will be ashamed at His coming, those who will say unto Him, “LORD, LORD, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?” (Matt. 7:22) And there are those who seek diligently for His return. (Matt. 24:42) Which are you?

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