Marginal Christianity 101

Have you settled for social Christianity?  Do you go to church like a good little boy, because it’s what we’re supposed to do? 

It is socially acceptable to have a painting of Jesus on a wall in your house.  It’s even okay to have a worn out looking Bible on the coffee table.  And if somebody has an emergency it’s okay to pray some kind of helpless prayer.

All the while such people use the Holy Lord’s name in vain.  They keep what they know about the Gospel to themselves.  You may occasionally find them in a Christian book store.  But you’re not likely to find them living a holy life.

Is this what you’ve become?  Is that what Christianity means to you?

I’m not going to browbeat you.  And I didn’t write this to make you feel bad.  But I want to help you examine that kind of Christianity.

Why would anyone be satisfied with some small settlement for eternity, when he could have been a son of God?  Why would anyone do something at the marginal levels, when they have the promise of the Holy One to help them aspire to greatness in the kingdom of God?

You do realize, don’t you, that we’re talking about eternity here.  At 100 billion billion years, you would still be considered a child.  That’s a long time to live with a regret.  For your sake, I’m speaking like a man, in that there might be what can be called marginal Christianity.

Personally I don’t believe there is such a thing as marginal Christianity.  Because I don’t recall a place in the Bible where God says that’s okay.

Instead, I find list after list of description belonging to those who do not receive eternal life.  So that begs this question, why would any sane person want to play games with eternity?

I know what the problems are my friend.  If you start talking about God you lose friends, and fast.  You’ll be forced to give up a lot of pleasures.  You will likely have difficulty with your spouse.  If you have teenagers, they are likely to think you have gone insane.  You may lose your job.  Even your many friends at church may turn their face when they see you coming, just like you do to God’s people now.

But if you want marginal Christianity, have at it.  What am I going to do, tie you to a chair and beat you with a rubber hose?  It’s entirely your choice, isn’t it?

But have you considered what’s at stake?  You may lose everything on this earth.  But you gain an unspeakable joy forever.  You may be driven to the place where you do not have one single friend.  But for eternity you will have a family who will never desert you or accuse you of any wrong.

You will suffer anguish over the things you have done.  That’s what repentance provokes.  That means you lose a lot of sleep.  But isn’t that why you have seared your conscience with a hot iron?   You have cauterized your shameful history, lest it bleed out into your mind.  For you can’t put up with any guilty thoughts.

You don’t look back at the bad things you’ve done, because you can’t take the shame of it.  But if you don’t join with Jesus, God will show you these things himself.  And when he does that, there will be no opportunity for you to make repairs.  And at that point there is no more offer of forgiveness.

But you’re welcome to keep your marginal Christianity.  You will not do harm to eternity if you are not there.  No one in the kingdom of heaven will talk bad about you.  My friend, they won’t even remember your name.

The people who are disobedient to the Gospel, do not have eternal life.  But you can keep your marginal Christianity, while so many strive with all they have to enter in.  Just where did you expect to fit in?

By His Grace

Relinquish With Joy

The world looks on compassion as a weakness.  They consider that a weakened man cannot sustain his hold on the things he has.  So their hideous greed approaches, emboldened.

Let them take the things their eyes see.  For they do not perceive the Christ of God.  But let your precious belongings be those of Christ.  For these things you will keep though you die.

They cannot steal what they cannot perceive.  They will not take those things which are distasteful and worthless to them.

But let the man add to his treasures, those things of Christ Jesus.  Amass the things that are unspeakably beautiful.  Pile up the things that are eternal.  Become a connoisseur of what is Holy. 

No one will touch your riches.  And you will find yourself void of fear to protect.  Sleep will be peaceful.  And you may even encourage the thief to take more.  For the things of this world can only detract from the riches you are amasing.

If the wisdom of our Holy Lord is determined to take from us all that can be held, how does the man of God say no? 

“No” comes from the lips of the one who is not yet complete.  The weakness in him causes him anguish to consider relinquishing what is filthy.  How can it possibly be right that a Christian should do such a thing?

By His Grace