We live in a time of faithless followers of Christ, they identify themselves as Christians, as long as things go their way. It is religion that has created this false flock of followers by cheapening the cost of salvation, the gift of grace, and the call to follow Christ.
Yes, there are many people who can sing the right worship songs, show up to church on Sunday and say the right words, they can even pray and sound authentic, but their lives do not reflect the life Christ has called us to live.
Some of the most frightening words Jesus spoke are these.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers! ’Matthew 7:21-23
We can pretend all we want, we can judge others all we want, think our sin is not greater than others, or that Jesus is okay with my choices, (you know because I am okay with them) we can fool others, we can fool ourselves but we can never fool God into believing we have put our faith in Him.
I speak these things from my own life, for I once was among them and followed and believed as they do.
Faith in Christ goes far beyond saying I believe, the Bible tells us even the devil believes in God. Belief is an action, belief is a change of heart, belief is faith in action, belief puts the Fruit of the Holy Spirit at work in our life.
You may not agree with me, you may get mad at me for speaking these things, but my fear is that we have a culture of church attendees that believe in God, and Jesus as His son, and that He died and rose again, but it is all just mental exercises for their minds, there is no surrender, no change of heart, it’s still I will live my life as I want.
We cannot live a Christian life, it is impossible, that is we can not live it without Christ, for without Christ, we do not have the Holy Spirit, and without the Holy Spirit we are lost.
All the good deeds, great prayers, charity, church attendance, clean living we can do mean nothing, sure they are great things, and we should strive to live this way, only we should do this to honor Christ, and live as God has directed us, when we’re living our lives counter to what God’s word says we have fooled ourselves and all these things are worthless.
The gospel calls us to die to ourselves, take up our cross and follow Jesus, we cannot pretend to count it all as loss, if we are not willing to lose it all, compared to gaining Christ alone.
We don’t get to ignore God’s word and live as we pick and choose the parts of scripture we want to live and believe, for if we live in the flesh we are in direct opposition to God and His will.
Belief and faith in God go beyond just words and actions, it is total trust that God is who He says is in scripture, and who Jesus says He is in scripture, it is totally believing Him as LORD and Savior over our life and living that out in a world that will reject you for they have rejected Him, faith and belief calls for our total submission to the Holy Spirit every day, it is putting our hands to the plow and never looking back it is a life surrendered to God.
God’s word says this:
“Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it. “Be on your guard against false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves. You’ll recognize them by their fruit. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes or figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, but a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So you’ll recognize them by their fruit. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, and do many miracles in your name?’ Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you lawbreakers! ’ “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. It collapsed with a great crash.”Matthew 7:13-27 CSB
“So Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life in yourselves. The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day, because my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink. The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven; it is not like the manna your ancestors ate — and they died. The one who eats this bread will live forever.” He said these things while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum. Therefore, when many of his disciples heard this, they said, “This teaching is hard. Who can accept it?” Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were complaining about this, asked them, “Does this offend you? Then what if you were to observe the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? The Spirit is the one who gives life. The flesh doesn’t help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. But there are some among you who don’t believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning those who did not believe and the one who would betray him.) He said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted to him by the Father.” From that moment many of his disciples turned back and no longer accompanied him. So Jesus said to the Twelve, “You don’t want to go away too, do you?” “Simon Peter answered, “Lord, to whom will we go? You have the words of eternal life.”We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” Jesus replied to them, “Didn’t I choose you, the Twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.” He was referring to Judas, Simon Iscariot’s son, one of the Twelve, because he was going to betray him.” John 6:53-71 CSB
“I say then, walk by the Spirit and you will certainly not carry out the desire of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other so that you don’t do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. I am warning you about these things — as I warned you before — that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The law is not against such things. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”
Galatians 5:16-26 CSB
“What use is it, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but he has no works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is without clothing and in need of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and be filled,” and yet you do not give them what is necessary for their body, what use is that? Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself. But someone may well say, “You have faith and I have works; show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” James 2:14-19 NASB
“But everything that was a gain to me, I have considered to be a loss because of Christ. More than that, I also consider everything to be a loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. Because of him I have suffered the loss of all things and consider them as dung, so that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own from the law, but one that is through faith in Christ — the righteousness from God based on faith. My goal is to know him and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death, assuming that I will somehow reach the resurrection from among the dead. Not that I have already reached the goal or am already perfect, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus. Therefore, let all of us who are mature think this way. And if you think differently about anything, God will reveal this also to you.”Philippians 3:7-15 CSB
Band Of Brothers