Monday, May 12, 2014

What (we) the Redeemed Know that Unbelievers Cannot Understand

“But the natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, neither can he know them, for the are spiritually discerned” (I Corinthians 2:14).

I was sitting in church recently during the song service thinking about what unbelievers say concerning our worship of God and how we practice our Christian faith.  Most simply do not get it.

1.  Some say we are taking the easy way out, that we use Jesus as an escape or crutch.  My main response to this is laughter.  It’s anything but easy, but only a true believer would know that.  We’re swimming upstream in a downstream world.  What’s easy about that?  Nothing.

I know a lot people who suffer greatly for the cause of Christ.  If it were easy, they would have bailed a long time ago.

And let’s not forget about the 300 girls in Nigeria who were recently kidnapped by a slave trader.  Many of these girls were Christians in their faith.  No, it’s not easy being a follower of Christ.

2.  Some say we give money (tithes and/or offerings) to buy God’s approval.  Another joke.  As I dropped my tithe into the offering bag last Sunday, I thought about this too.  The amount of the check represents a significant sacrifice for me.  And yet, I make the check payable to PCC and send it on its merry way, knowing what it will accomplish for our church and for Christ’s work.

And you think I’m trying to earn favors with the Heavenly Father?  Not even close.

Those of us who are truly redeemed give out of gratitude and faith, out of obedience and love.  Period.

3.  Some seem to think we follow Jesus because we are afraid of dying lost.  Again, they missed it by a country mile.  Sure, I don’t want to die lost.  And I don't want to spend eternity in a place of torment.  But honestly, I rarely think about going to hell anymore.  Jesus Christ has taken that burden from me.  “There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1).

But I must confess that fear of dying lost was an initial motivator for me to surrender my life to Christ.  But that was half a lifetime ago, and I am so glad the burden of it has been lifted.

There is so much more that unbelievers simply do not understand:
  • The nature of Scripture and why we love it
  • The reason for our obedience and why we delight in obeying His commandments
  • The love we have for one another
  • Our humble courage and our courageous humility
  • Our imperfections and the unlimited grace of the Lord Jesus Christ
  • And why we work for the Lord – not in order to get to heaven – but because we are grateful for His goodness towards us.

This is why our Lord put one massive, earth-shattering requirement on anyone who would enter His kingdom:  You have to become as a little child (Mark 10:15; Luke 18:16; I Corinthians 14:20; I Peter 2:2).

And let’s be honest.  That is a deal-breaker for many people who pride themselves on their intellect or self-determination.

How does a brilliant man or woman – one with a superior mind – go about humbling himself or herself and “becoming as a child?”

Most can’t. 

They are spiritually blind.

And only a sovereign act of God can change their blindness.

Turn to God and He will not turn you away.

You’re invited to the inside.  It's time to come in from the cold.

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