September 26, 2016
Good day followers. An 8:00 a.m. call found me this morning sharing much of what we’ve discussed in the “How to do good” post.
The caller shared with me his battle of staying consistent in doing good, in staying connected to Christ by way of fellowship. He then shared that he’d accepted Jesus in his life in the late nineties yet he was not instructed on the next step so…he lived life with Jesus in his heart but his life style didn’t change from what he was living prior to his acceptance of Christ.
“No one told me there was more” he wailed. ” I thought the purpose of my acceptance of Christ in my heart was for the purpose of escaping a devil’s hell. I thought that as long as I had believed that Jesus was the son of God and asked him into my heart, I didn’t need to do any more; I had a secured place in heaven regardless to how I lived.”
Followers the words of the caller sent my head spinning and my heart aching.
Allow me if you will to quote a passage from the book of Hosea. “My people are destroyed for lack of Knowledge: Hosea 4:4a
In the 4th chapter of Hosea, God had a controversy with His people and He expressed it through Hosea. The people had forsaken the Lord to run after every imagination of their hearts. They were unfaithful, showed no kindness, they were stealing, swearing, lying, killing, committing adultery; murder followed murder.
In the 4th chapter God hit the priest, the leaders, the pastors really hard. He said of them that they had forgotten about Him and his law and with this being as was…they weren’t teaching the people anything. They weren’t leading them to the Lord. In fact the priest were indulging in the sins with the people.
It’s a pretty sad picture isn’t it? He who is suppose to show me the way and teach me the way is out of the way himself.
As teachers and preachers of this gospel we can’t just bring a person to the place of accepting Christ and then leave him or her to themselves. We can’t give them a small portion and expect them to be full.
When the Holy Spirit draws a person to you my brother and my sister to hear the gospel from your lips and that person receives the Lord Jesus into his or her heart, that person becomes your baby to feed, nurture and clothe. Our goal is not to see how many people we can get to confess Christ…our goal is to help many to possess Christ. Any and almost every one can verbalize a confession of belief in the Lord Jesus but how many life styles show a possession of Jesus Christ.
After getting off the phone with the caller, I had a million and one questions coursing through my mind. What did he say to the Lord Jesus upon acceptance of him.. I wondered. Don’t we usually come to Jesus with the confession of us being both sinner and separated from God? Don’t we say to the Lord that we believe he came and died for our sins on Calvary’s cross, shedding that blood in my stead so that I could have eternal life with Him. Don’t we ask the Lord Jesus to forgive us our sins and then ask him to come into our heart, our lives, to set up residency within us? Doesn’t all of these confessions on our part suggest that we acknowledge the need for a change of lifestyle?
Our walk with and in Christ is not a one time confession. The confession is the start of the journey. Our confession is the ticket that allows us to board the train. As we journey we learn to possess Christ. We learn to become as Christ in actions, deeds, talk and thinking.
Jesus in presenting the Kingdom of God labored with the people. The apostles labored with the people and Jesus commanded us to labor with the people: “Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the World..Matthew 25:19-20.
Baptize carries the meaning of immerse. When we hear the word baptize or baptism we instantly think to dip or plunge into water. If you will allow I’d like to show you a yet deeper truth of the word immerse. Immerse also carries the meaning of…”to involve deeply.” Not only are we to submerge an individual in water which is an act that proclaims to onlookers:the God-head bodily, principalities and powers as well as people; that we have become united with the Lord Jesus and his teachings; we are also to deeply involve individuals in what they have been baptized into. To bring a person into the saving grace of the Lord Jesus and then leave them is like a mother birthing a baby and bringing the baby home to fend for him or her self. Insane isn’t it. So too is the insanity of not laboring with new converts who come to the Lord.
For three years Jesus labored with the people, He taught, worked miracles, taught, cast out demons, taught, raised the dead, taught, opened blind eyes, taught, prayed for the people, taught, encouraged the people and taught. What do you notice in this statement?
Nearing the end of his earthly ministry Jesus in preparation of his departure encouraged the disciples to not fear because he was leaving, he said “I will not leave you comfortless.” John 14:18. In other words, “This journey continues. It does not stop here. I’ve reached my destination on this part of the journey yet know I’m not going to leave you guys to fend for your selves. There is still much more to this journey than meets the eye and you are not fully equipped to continue on your own therefore, I am going to send you another person who is just like me yet will teach you much more than what I have. He will help with your transformation. He will be your eyes and your ears. He will guide and instruct as well as keep you in remembrance to all that I have said. He will strengthen and encourage you. He will produce in you perseverance to meet this journey’s end. And He will conform you into my very image, an image that has begun to change your lives. The journey continues. Let not your hearts be troubled.”
In our Novel “A Desire so Strong; chapter 33 is entitled “Business Trip. For those of you who have the book I encourage you to go back and read the chapter allowing the Holy Spirit to minister to both your heart and mind. I also admonish you believers to labor in love with those of them who God has drawn to you by his Spirit. Give out of your spirits to others what the Holy Spirit has given you. Selah
Flip the Scripts Admin