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Good Time Christianity (published in The North Weld The Herald/Voice, 6/16/11)

posted Sep 7, 2013, 1:16 PM by Fccea Webmaster
A tomcat and a tabby are courting on the back fence. He leans over and says, "I'd die for you, you beautiful thing." She eyes him coyly and asks, "How many times?" Great question. Are you for real, or are you just another paper tiger?

Bizarre as it sounds, that question is at the heart of true Christian commitment.

We think we're Christians because Mom and Dad were. Weve been confirmed and still get to church when its convenient.

We've been baptized, and even served on a committee or two. Got a Bible somewhere around the house with our name imprinted on it. Sure is nice to be a Christian, especially since it doesn't interfere with anything in our real life.

We did cringe a little that time the Bible reading was" I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth" (Rev. 3:15-16). But it turned out to be from Revelation and no one knows what that book is about anyway!

Somehow, we convince ourselves that our prayerless, faithless, devotionless, costless, lifeless Christianity is okay because Jesus loves everybody, doesnt He? "Good time Christians."

So what do we do with His own words: "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it." "Will you die to self daily?" By His definition, are we really Christian?

Jill Briscoe tells of being in an airport waiting for a flight on September 11, 2001. As news of the day's disaster began to filter in, she noticed a young woman soldier sitting nearby. With each new snippet of news her distress increased until she began to cry. Jill approached to ask if she could be of any help. The young woman acknowledged her growing fear. Anticipating what might happen she said, "I didn't join the army to go to war."

I worry that many of us are like that with Christ. We want the saving, but not the war. We want the benefits, but not the commitment. We want His death for us, but have no intention of dying to self for Him. It raises the question of whether we are really a Christian at all -- or just another paper tiger.

By His Grace, Pastor Dave