I like Christian sayings. I like them when they maintain their meaning and don’t become cliche or just empty words. Here are five such phrases to consider:
1) I am praying for you- when we tell someone we will pray for them, we should definitely make sure that we actually pray for them! In fact, we should pray for them right then and there if we can. I don’t want to stand before God one day and He ask me why I kept telling people I would go to Him on their behalf and never did!
2) I don’t feel led– is it possible that this more times than not ends up being an excuse for what we really mean: Idon’t want to. We should be very careful to use God as our excuse not to serve. There might be times He directs us away from a specific role but be sure it is the Lord leading you.
3) I said the sinner’s prayer- in case you were not aware, there is not a specific prayer in the Bible for salvation. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pray and ask God to save you. We need to make sure it comes from the heart and is in our own words, confessing our sin and crying out to God. When I became a Christian, I didn’t have any script to pray. In fact, I wasn’t sure what to pray! I just cried out, “Jesus.” I am confident God saved me in that moment.
4) I’m forgiven, not perfect– of course this is true but when it is used as an excuse to justify your wrong actions, it is hypocrisy. If you have to use this phrase then be careful you are not using it to justify your actions.
5) God is in control- again, no doubt that He is in control but when we use this only when things are overwhelming and believe we are in control the rest of the time then there is an issue. Also, God is in control should not be an excuse for you not to do what is right or what you are called to do. Or when we use this when we are in agreement with God but would never utter this phrase when God is calling us to do something we don’t like, then it is hypocrisy.
To be a genuine Christian in this day and age is no easy task. The culture berates you at every turn for taking a stand: “How can you not be ok with same sex marriages?”; “How can you believe all that fairy tale crazy talk about an ark, David and Goliath, and resurrection?”; “How can you not see every religion as good as your own?”; “How can you be so judgmental?”
The negative rhetoric is increasing in intensity against Chrisitans as our culture turns further away from recognizing God as Sovereign and Majestic. The word of the day is “tolerance.” They speak tolerance but behind the words we see a more sinister evil at work. Here is the common attitude of the nonbeliever and what they are really saying to Christians:
Christian, my belief or non-belief should be ok with you because I say it is. That’s all that should matter. You have to accept my beliefs as being as legitimate as your own. If not the consequences will be severe for you as I cannot tolerate your unacceptance. If you discredit my beliefs or my actions, no matter how immoral you think they are, I will take issue with you, Christian, because I desperately need you to accept it so that I can be justified in my deception. I think tolerance is my move towards progressiveness and enlightenment but truth is I am blinded by Satan and I will fight with all I have to pressure you into feeling guilty and ultimately trying to get you to compromise your convictions. It is because I hate God and therefore, I hate you. Oh I will say I don’t but my words and actions show that I most definitely do. I will accuse you of bigotry, discirimination, and hate but it is because I cannot stand the guilt your convictions put on me. I cannot tolerate that you think you have the only right way.
It makes me sick that you do not allow me to live like I want and be as blasphemous as I desire and it not be ok. I don’t want to be held accountable. Therefore, I will attack you in the name of tolerance until I can get you to not take a stand against me.
I am ok if you judge some things, especially those things I do not practice. I don’t murder, so you can judge that. Stay away from any belief or immorality that I practice though. It makes me feel bad when you say it is wrong and I don’t want to feel bad so I will rally against you. I need it to be ok that I do whatever feels good to me. I don’t want to live in accordance with a higher standard or purpose.
What I really want from you is to cower before my god, Satan. I want you to be passive and scared. I want you to be worried about being seen as judging and hateful because you stood up to me. I will do everything I can to shame you and make you feel discriminatory. I do it all because I need to be justified. I need to be ok. I don’t want to live for your God so I need you to say it is ok that I live my way. If you will do this Christian then you and I will be ok.
Christians, we cannot compromise the truth or cower in the face of pressure. We are not bigots and hateful for standing up for truth as long as we do it with love and respect. Don’t lose your voice for the truth!
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. Revelation 3:15-16
Inspired by Francis Chan’s book, Crazy Love, I set out to write my own top 10 list of indicators you might be living a lukewarm Christianity. Be warned toes will hurt if you read. Be honest with yourself. Read above and see the Lord’s warning for living lukewarm. And remember if you are not guilty of one or two of these it doesn’t make you hot for the Lord.
You think mostly about how to be comfortable and happy on this earth with little thought of Heaven and eternal life.
You give God the leftovers rather than the first fruits of yourself.
You seek God but usually only if you are in a bind.
You don’t share you faith with the lost but you have really good excuses why this is.
You say you believe in God but if we were to record your Monday-Saturday it would reveal that you live as if God doesn’t even exist.
You spend more on your cell phone bill than you give to God.
Someone outside of who you see on Sundays asks you what you love most and Jesus doesn’t get mentioned.
You would rather your kids be happy and popular rather than holy and devoted to God.
You are quick to volunteer at your kids school or sporting event but make excuses why you cannot volunteer at church.
You know you practice sin but justify by saying “doesn’t everyone?”
“I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born.”
― Ronald Reagan
I have come across this quote from Ronald Reagan several times over the years. It leads me to contemplate the hypocrisy of abortion. You might say it’s the choice of the parent. Even for the parent making the decision of life or death, it is hypocritical. By hypocritical I mean behaving in a way that suggests one has higher standards in action than is really the case. Let me explain: Parents contemplating abortion would never have been willing to give that power of choice to their parents. They would be horrified by the very thought of their life being left in the hands of their parents to choose whether they live or die. To say that I am fine with my parents having the ability to choose whether to have me or not is ridiculous because of the fact that they DID choose to have me. When I know what the decision will be of course I am fine with saying I would allow them to have a choice. That is without risk for me. The only other option is to say: I would be fine with my parents’ decision to abort me. If that is your answer then you lie to yourself or you find absolutely no value in being you.
Abortion murders something priceless so that we do not have to deal with the consequence. I can think of no other area in life where that kind of thinking is acceptable among moral people. To write off a person, everyone being of great value, as an obstacle to what we perceive as our enduring happiness is beyond egotistic.
We are so easily manipulated by sheer numbers. It is amazing how we allow the masses to help justify such atrocity. If enough people can buy into a belief then it must be right? If others feel this way then I must be justified in my action. That was the ploy of Hitler! He convinced the masses to feel right about what was so extremely wrong.
It comes down to this: we are deciding the fate of a person so that we may live as we wish. But one might say: the obstacles of having the child are so great upon me. Are they great enough to allow you the right to take their life to avoid the potential burden? How blind we are as a nation to God’s will in this!
It is hypocrisy to say you give value to life at all if you advance the cause of abortion.
13 For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.