I have been thumbing through my Bible trying to find verses that instruct us to sneak up on lost people. Today’s mainline churches are going incognito and wearing camouflage! When a law enforcement officer goes undercover, he does so to impersonate the bad guys. Why would a Christian do that? As best I understand it, God wants us to “come out from among them,” not imitate them.
Recently in our newspaper there was an article about Christian (?) rock (an oxymoron, if I ever heard one.) One of the musicians was quoted, “We’re Christian…but we don’t want to be labeled.” As far as I know, these are good young men and mean well in what they are doing. What I am saying has nothing personal to do with them, but believe me, they don’t have to worry, that kind of music won’t give you away as being Christian. The odds of anyone exposing their Christianity are pretty slim; it is well hidden. You know, I have never seen a book on describing how the Holy Spirit led someone into rock music of any kind. I have seen quite a few on how and why the Holy Spirit led them out.
Why is everyone so afraid that they won’t be accepted as sinners? What is it with this drive to impersonate the devil’s crowd? Why is it so important to many pastors, Christian groups and churches to merge into worldly ways, dress and mannerisms?
If you want to know, I believe I can tell you. Paul spoke of the “offence of the cross” (Galatians 5:11.) It was the preaching of that “cross” that caused “persecution” (Galatians 6:12.) It was the focal point of Paul’s glorying and that which separated him from the world (Galatians 6:14.) He watched, brokenhearted, as those who had refused to “walk the walk” became “enemies of the cross of Christ” (Philippians 3:18.)
The cross represents Christ shedding His blood for the redemption of sin. The world hates that. They prefer something not so repulsive. It is hard for one to accept that his or her sin is so horrible that the only solution was for Jesus Christ to shed His blood. In Christ’s own short life, the crowds got thinner the closer He got to the cross. As long as He was feeding them and healing them, they hung around. It is this thing of my sin that I don’t want to have to deal with. Religion wants to find a cure for AIDS (they don’t want to talk about its prevention.)
Religion wants to legislate instead of seek repentance for sins (more will enlist in a moral majority than a soul winning class.) We love to speak of making the world a better place, even though it is an outright contradiction of 2 Timothy 3:13. Would you like proof of that? Instead of Christians teaching that men must be changed from within (2 Corinthians 5:17,) we have decided that the more we become like them the more they will want to become like us. (?) Does that make any sense?
Let me tell you what I do know. Twenty years ago I met a man at a luncheon who was introduced as a man who had probably led more people to Christ in our town than any other man; his name was Jack. Jack looked like an ordinary man; was not an exceptional speaker and was very unassuming. Our paths began to cross more often and I learned that Jack was a man of deep conviction and had a great compassion for winning lost people to Christ. I cannot tell you how many grown men I have heard testify that Jack led them to Christ. Some had hated him, some despised him, some tried to ignore him, but Jack kept coming! Why am I telling you about Jack…well, because he led more people to make a public profession of their faith than anyone I know…and he never compromised one of his convictions to do so and believe he is an old-fashioned “hard nose.” Jack had one goal…get people saved! He could endure the ridiculing by religionists who let people go to hell because it wasn’t in “good taste” to talk about it. He endured the slamming of doors in his face, the cursing and the rejections. He heard the whispers of scorn regarding his lack of finesse or his unrefined methods. He just kept leading sinners to Christ. Homes were restored, families were blessed and lives were changed for the better. He was paid the same, whether he played golf with a prospective church member or knocked on an old drunk’s door. As Mary, he chose “the good part” (Luke 10:42.)
Everyone knows our culture has changed. Granted there are outdated methods, but not as many as we are being led to believe. God’s way has always been one on one…people to people. We used to take a survey in our prison seminars in relation to how they came to know Christ. Every single survey listed (90%-100% of the time) another person…not the TV, radio, gospel tract or book…but an individual as the primary reason they came to know Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. Sometimes it was a relative, often times a friend and even another inmate. The influencing individual was pointed out as one who abstained from sinful practices or someone who had been changed from sinful practices.
“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” 2 Corinthians 5:10
Keep Looking Up!