Ministerial Meanderings

God centered theology in a man centered world.

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Location: Springfield, Missouri, United States

I was born in Washington D.C. and raised in Laurel, Maryland. I served in the United States Air Force for 20 years then retired. Then God led me to become a pastor. I was converted to Christ in the summer of 1966. I enjoy the company of my wife, children and grandchildren. I live with my three cats Hobbs, Taz, and Chloe.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

What Difference Does It Make?

We Christians call the conversion of a sinner (into a saint) a life changing experience. We tell people it is better to be a Christian than to not be a Christian. Then, when we become Christians, we spend our lives trying to learn a truly God honoring system of theology. Why? Because right belief leads to right living. Orthodoxy leads to orthopraxis. We accept it as an axiom that the more biblical your theology is (and the more you understand it) the more biblical and God honoring will be your lifestyle. Belief matters.

Or does it? If we were to be brutally honest we would have to admit that there is a huge "holiness gap" in Christian churches today. The trend of the day is to try and be as much like the world as you can and still feel comfortable calling yourself a Christian. It is easy to rationalize sin and we do it expertly. Many seeker sensitive church services are little more than entertainment extravaganzas. Preachers preach soft sermons carefully chosen not to offend anyone. One preachers quipped that his aim in preaching is to make people feel good about themselves and to send them home smiling.

But worse, people are offered a Christianity with no demands to it. The general feeling is that if you ask people to make a commitment to something that they will back away or reject it. So people are offered a Christianity that asks them to do nothing. One example of this can be seen in the "Free Grace Movement" where people are taught that the decision to make Jesus your savior (and so avoid hell) and to make him your Lord (one to whom you would commit your life to and follow) are two separate choices. One can be saved without being a follower of Jesus. The only problem with this is that it is blatantly unbiblical.

What difference does it make if you are a Christian and if you hold to the highest form of theology if it doesn't make a positive change in your life? The things you believe should make a difference. It they don't, then I submit they are only opinions and not beliefs. Beloved, why are we surprised when the world mocks us and rejects us? They don't see anything different between us and them. The Church (universal) used to be the voice of God in the world and demonstrate what life in Christ could be to the watching world around us. Now, we are held in derision. Why? Because we are a worldly people. A preacher who teaches on holiness is often accused of preaching legalism.

What difference do your beliefs make in your life? Can we not all agree that there ought to be SOME difference? That being a Christian ought to mean SOMETHING? We ought to be the light of the world. Too often our light looks like a flashlight with the batteries taken out. Being a Christian ought to make a difference. What difference has it made to you?

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