By Buddy Hanson – Grace and Law Resource Center
How’s Your Lifestyle?
(2 Timothy 3.14-15)
Should we be looking for ways to rationalize that it’s OK to disobey God, or should we be looking for opportunities to Obey Him?
The answer to this question should be easy, but to observe the lifestyle of the typical 21st century American Christian we can only conclude that the answer is not so easy. Why do we say, for example, “God’s Word is true, but this particular promise is meant for either a past or a future generation?” Or, “Politics is dirty, and we should not take part in them?” Have we forgotten Psalm 2, or the consequences of Sodom and Gomorrah? We like to point to the success of Jonah’s preaching to the completely non-Christian city of Nineveh, but we don’t usually mention that it only took those citizens 100 years to return to their God-hating ways, whereupon God destroyed them. Or, what about the contrast between Western civilization and Eastern civilization? Non-Christians, who believe in luck instead of God must consider that we are the luckiest people on the face of the earth. We can point to numerous civilizations that have provided personal liberty and freedom by framing their civil laws upon biblical ethics, yet the East cannot point to a single instance of a civilization providing anywhere near the level of personal liberty and freedom by framing its civil laws upon man’s ethics.
What about the five SOLAS of the Reformation? Can we truly say that we are living by “Scripture alone” (Sola Scriptura) ,or by pragmatism, common sense, and/or natural law? Can we truly say that we are living by “faith alone” (Sola Fide) and are carefully instructing each other how to live-out our faith with fear and trembling? Are we truly living for “God’s glory alone” (Soli Deo Gloria) by having seminars to train local legislators who profess to be Christians in how to govern according to biblical ethics?
Are we truly living for “Christ alone” ( Sola Christus) by coming to worship services and small group studies with the goal of not merely learning more about God, but learning how to use those objective truths to take ground for Christ’s Kingdom, and to present a Christian antithesis to the subjective beliefs of our non-Christian neighbors? Can we truly say that we are living by God’s “grace alone” (Sola Gratia) in our evangelizing and discipling efforts by presenting God’s answers to the six questions that non-Christian philosophers are unable to answer? The questions that only the Bible answers are:
Who am I?
What am I supposed to do?
Where am I supposed to do it?
When am I supposed to do it?
Why am I supposed to do it?
How am I supposed to do it?
While, we have all of these answers available to us on the pages of the Bible, most of us live as though we don’t have them, and even worse, many of us have never been taught them from either the pulpit or in a small group. In addition, Paul clarifies what elements we need to “put on,” and “put off” in our lifestyle. 13 Non-Christians, on the other hand, don’t have a clue about the answers, but live as though they do. And we wonder why our culture continues to crumble!
Next week the issue is whether or not American Christians will take part in redeeming the world for Christ.
13 Ephesians 4; Colossians 3
This Week’s Divine ComeBack
How many times a day do you get asked, “How are you doing?” or “How are things going?” Most of us “come back” with a reply that is expected and quickly forgotten, such as, “Fine … great … pretty good.” For an unexpected and memorable reply, use this week’s Divine ComeBack.” WARNING: Such a creative response may undo the thoughts of the person with whom you are talking and may cause them to be momentarily speechless as they process what you’ve just said. So don’t be surprised if a moment or two of silence follows your “ComeBack.”
I’m living above the expectations of the non-Christian worldview. Daniel 3.16-17
From Divine ComeBacks: Uncommon Replies to Common Greetings, Buddy Hanson, (Hanson Group)