Monday, February 27, 2012

You Cannot Love Both The World And Jesus

There has to be a difference between someone with Jesus and someone without him. If there isn't a difference there is something wrong. As followers of Jesus we have been called out of the world. What is meant by this is that we have been called out of the system of the world. We have been called out of its pattern of thinking, perspective, priorities, and values. We must still live here because we have been called into Jesus' mission, to share the good news with anyone who is willing to be saved. But living here does not mean being part of the mentality here; we have been brought into something different. We are different. We are a new creation.

There are many people walking around with a badge that says Christian without realizing that they are suppose to be walking around in brand new clothes that have Jesus written all over them. We have a lot of wanna-be Christians who have their little badge but who look, talk and act exactly like the person without Jesus. Apostle Paul described these type of Christians to  Timothy:

If anyone teaches false doctrines and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, he is conceited and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions and constant friction between men of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain. (1 Timothy 6:3-5)

We know about the fruit of the Spirit, the character of Jesus that is produced in us by the Spirit. Well this passage in Timothy is the fruit of the wanna-be Christian. They teach wrong stuff and when shown what the Bible says, they disagree with it. They think they know more than anyone else, are better than everyone but in fact, understand nothing about God, Jesus and the Spirit. They are drawn to controversies, probably surfing the Internet, looking for someone to argue with concerning trivial things like whether it is better to use wine or grape juice in Communion, and what temperature the water should be for baptisms. Much of what they produce will be envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions and constant friction. Some of these type of people will only see the Church as a means of making money.

Now contrast this with the character of a mature follower of Jesus Christ. There is a difference:

But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. (1 Timothy 6:6-8)

There is a good measuring rod to look in the mirror with. A follower of Jesus is marked by a character of contentment. The reason is because we are divorced from the pattern of this world, from it's thinking and desires. Our priorities are much different, as are our values. We are no longer attached to things here and are not striving to gain more things. Jesus said not to try to store up wealth here but instead send ahead of us the treasures that are of much greater worth, which go ahead of us and are stored up in heaven. The love, kindness, good deeds, all such things done in Jesus name are our heavenly treasure. They will be the jewels in our crown, the crown we will receive but which we will lay at Jesus feet. I don't know about you but I want to lay down a crown of great value; I want what I submit to Jesus to be of great substance.

The enemy's greatest tools are deception and distraction and there are a lot of followers of Jesus who are being deceived into wearing the badge instead of the new garment. There are way too many who are being distracted by the rotting treasures of this earth. Don't be among the number. Follow Jesus and only Jesus; consume the Word of God; live by the Spirit, empowered by the Spirit; fix your eyes on Jesus; get busy doing what we were saved to do. Allow the fruit of the Spirit to be produced in you by the Holy Spirit which requires a spirit, soul and body wholly filled and possessed by Jesus Christ. We are different. We belong to Jesus. God cannot be mocked, he knows who belong to him.

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