Wow! I just realized that it has been a really LOOOONG time since I blogged. It is crazy how busy the last few months have been. Crazy in a good way, I mean. We moved into our new building, celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas in our new church home and now it's a new year. Before long we'll be planning our Easter services and getting ready for Memorial Day!
I recently read an article where the author shared "The Top 5 Lies Too Many Christians Believe". I found it an interesting perspective. Though I'm not sure I agree with her list, it got me thinking about the things I would include on such a list. As I try to get back in the swing of things, here's my go at it:
1. Church is unnecessary.
A lot of people who have made professions of faith seem to have little regard for the church of Jesus Christ. They'll use any excuse at their disposal to miss services. Company is coming. Got the sniffles. Kids' extracurricular activities. I even heard one parent say that she "punished" her kids by not letting them come to church.
The Bible calls the church the "body" of Christ and the "bride" of Christ. We're told that Jesus gets glory "through the church". It seems like the church is pretty important to God, so if we love Him and desire to follow Him, it should be pretty important to us, too.
2. A Christian just needs to be "good" and act "nice".
Christians certainly should seek to live moral lives, and we should be nice to others, but that is not the sum total of being a Christian. We'll never please God simply through our external behavior. It is by faith alone in Christ alone that we enter a right relationship with God. Once we have accepted Jesus as our Savior, and as we allow Him to live through us, we will be "good" and "nice" in a way we never could in our own strength alone.
3. We should expect unbelievers to behave like Christians.
Why is it that Christians are often so offended when unbelievers lie, cheat, cuss, lose their tempers and in many other ways act like...unbelievers? Why in the world would we ever expect non-Christians to live like Christians? We need to be much quicker to show grace to those who have never trusted Christ as their Savior. After all, consider how hard it is for us as believers to act righteously, and WE have the Holy Spirit living in us.
4. We should leave the teaching of Scripture to Pastors & Ministers.
I count it a real privilege to preach and teach God's Word to the Life Spring congregation. But it is not my privilege or responsibility to do it alone. God has not entrusted His precious Word to just a few special people. He has made it available to all who will listen with their ears and see with their eyes.
We're really blessed at Life Spring to have a number of gifted teachers, and we should take full advantage of the opportunities to study the Bible with them.
5. My spiritual life has nothing to do with my "real" life.
Maybe this should be the #1 lie, because it is really the root of the others. When we begin to separate our "spiritual life" from our "real life", we make it incredibly easy to live in disobedience and rebellion towards God. When we fail to draw a connection between what we experience on Sunday morning and what happens the rest of the week, we end up living lives of hypocrisy and duplicity.
I'm not sure these are really the "top 5 lies", but they certainly are prevalent among many who claim Christ as their Savior. Let's be quick to look at our own lives and ask God to reveal areas where we might be buying into such lies. After all, there really is no deception as dangerous as self-deception.