Thursday, July 30, 2015

CRAZY PILLS?



Many Christians today do not put Jesus’ words into practice, and in fact they find it ridiculous that anyone might suggest that they are expected to do so.

What’s going on here? I feel like Mugato in Zoolander shouting, “Am I the only one who can see this? I feel like I’m taking crazy pills, here.”

Just the other day I encountered a Christian who acted as if putting Jesus’ words into practice would most likely result in cutting off your own hands or plucking out your own eyes. Presumably because they’ve heard that Jesus told someone to do that once and therefore obedience to Jesus must include self-mutilation.

Even worse, this sort of reaction is not an isolated incident. Many Christians – dare I say “Most” Christians – today are of the same mind on this. For them, following Jesus is an optional, extra-curricular activity that could possibly be undertaken but it is not necessary by any means. Being a Christian, in their minds, is simply about believing the right ideas about God and little else. Of course, one must pray a certain prayer in a certain way to be saved from an eternal torture in hell, but beyond that all that God requires of Christians is to hold the right set of beliefs.

Let me say this: If the words of Jesus are not meant to be put into practice, then Jesus is not Lord and Christianity is a dead religion. [You can Tweet me on that].

Christianity is all about discipleship. It is primarily about one person pledging their life to Jesus and surrendering everything to Christ. Apart from that you may believe whatever you like and pray whatever comes to mind, but you may not call yourself a Christian.

Jesus called for disciples to follow him. [Matt. 4:19]

He warned them to count the cost before starting out with him. [Luke 14:26-28]

He told them that it would cost them just one thing – and that was called “everything”. [Luke 14:33]

He explained that it was impossible to be his disciple without denying yourself and taking up your cross daily. [Matt. 16:24]

He complained against those who wanted to call him ‘Lord, Lord’ without actually doing what he commanded. [Luke 6:46-49]

Disciples and Christians are exactly the same thing. [Acts 11:26]

Whatever else you believe about Jesus or the Scriptures, you must not call yourself a Christian if you do not daily submit to Jesus as your Lord. [Romans 10:9]

A.W. Tozer once called those who deny this simple truth “Vampire Christians” because they only want enough of Christ’s blood to get to heaven, but have no real intention of following Jesus with their life.

Am I the one taking crazy pills here? Or is it everyone else?


-kg

5 comments:

Steve Kline said...

We must have gotten the same pills Keith. I haven't been on Facebook for years but have been the last couple of years. I'm amazed at what I see from people who claim to be Christians. It's really sad.

NoahM said...

So totally agree with your observations, Keith.

Minor issue your statement "Disciples and Christians are exactly the same thing". Acts 11:26 says disciples are called Christians, trouble is that all too many Christians are not really disciples (which is your point).

Steven McCoy said...

So true, Keith - as a pastor, there is always this tension present. Those who are leaning forward in their spiritual track and those who seem to be along for the ride. It seems to have always been this way - Christ implied that in the parable of the seeds. Bottom line: You're not crazy! I appreciate the post.

Tom Caylor said...

I think the missing link between so-called "believing" and actually following is truly getting to know Jesus on a personal basis, getting to know God as our perfect personal Father. In fact, skipping that step and going straight from so-called believing to doing many good things is also missing it, as in Luke 7:21-23, God will say "I never knew you", and 1 Cor. 13, a clanging symbol.

Mike Craig said...

So often when I share with Christians about the prison ministry I am involved with, their reaction is shock. "Why would anyone want to visit prisoners?", is often the response. I go because Jesus said to. Breaks my heart that fellow believers can't understand why.