I think we confuse Morality with Holiness sometimes…
Morality is a clean outside. Holiness is a clean inside.
Morality is being just to mankind. Holiness is being separated unto God.
“The chief danger of the twentieth century will be religion without the Holy Ghost, Christianity without Christ, forgiveness without repentance , salvation without regeneration, heaven without hell”
William Booth: (Founder of the Salvation Army)
Wow. He read our mail. Email I suppose…
How did he know?
As access to information goes up, we seem to lose our ability to filter it.
The truth is that mankind is predictable. Before you become overly offended take a look at how you handle your teenage daughter. “But I LOVE HIM MOM! You don’t understand!!” Right… you have a song. How sweet and stupid and predictable. You love your teenager but don’t love what comes next.
I think you and I are like teenagers to God. Predictable. What keeps us from seeing this are the complications we find ourselves in. Just add a few layers of issues and pain and we add to our faults the thought that no one understands us, or maybe more accurately no one could because we are that much smarter/more talented/better/faster etc than they are.
How could your mom possibly know how you feel? She’s probably never had a boyfriend.
The truth is probably closer to this: her mistakes in that area cost her marriage and your father so much anguish that she would love for you to avoid it. But you probably won’t because she didn’t listen to her mother either.
Holiness is our separation to/ connection with God.
When we assume we somehow get to make the rules because we are smarter than the God of the universe and connect any way that suits us we are sweet and stupid and predictable. Not really fair to God who we force to watch reruns of the same decision making since the original human Adam. Traded the birthright of heaven for an apple he did..
He made an ASSUMPTION.
Wicked things those assumptions above our pay grade are…
Before you make any more assumptions that God is cool with you choosing how you connect with Him on any terms you can think of, imagine the minute following your death marching up to the Throne and demanding one ticket to heaven!!
If He doesn’t see Jesus in you, it is simply too late.
There is the assumption in every argument or moral disagreement you and I make that is false:
We are inherently good.
We are absolutely NOT. Not good enough.
Here are three steps that every single Christ follower has had to walk through before their souls could be saved by that amazing Son of God who was crucified for their sins:
1. Realize Reality.
If you are not sick you need no doctor.
If you need no saving for any reason under the sun, you cannot be saved.
Every follower has had to sit in the middle of their own sins and say “This is all on ME. I owe my life for this”
As information increases, we adapt by getting upset about the wrong things.
The penalty should upset us, but the chatroom options for salvation and support of whatever false thought we could think of prevents us from this reality. No reality, no salvation for our souls.
It should make us afraid. Some turn back at this step but they forfeit their souls.
“Surely God wouldn’t make us afraid!” Death comes for us all and then the judgement. Inevitable. Inescapable. Terrifying. Utterly hopeless and dark unless the Light of the world shines on us. This is never an unintentional, arbitrary act from heaven on the lucky few, it is a decision WE make in the crucible to accept that grace made available to the whole world. Yet “Narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:14)
It is nobody’s burden but your own.
“If you want to go fast go alone. If you want to go far go together” African Proverb
So the question “Could God actually love the real me?” has been answered. The next question disturbs us on a different level.
I’m actually convinced we lose more Canadians at this step…
“Could any person love the real me?”
The answer is that the church can, and does. It must if we are to reflect the love of Christ.
For every square meter of coral reef it’s been estimated that $47,000 of property on the shoreline is sheltered from the waves. When you are part of the broken body of Christ, the church, you protect not property, but the souls of society behind you.
We bind ourselves to live in real community with real people and a real Lord. Every single person who comes to be a part of the magnificent work of Christ in the world will be thanked for all eternity by those who owe them their very lives by making the only introduction that really matters.
Reality. Fear. Traction.
It’s time to quit playing the “ME!” game and live for something we would die for.