Monday, February 20, 2017

Finish Line or Starting Point?

In the book of John, Jesus used the phrase "born again" to explain salvation to Nicodemus.  These days, salvation is referred to as being born again and also as a new birth (based on II Corinthians 5:17).  Either of these terms is correct, but I'm afraid there seems to be some form of misunderstanding when it comes to salvation--many believers treat it as a destination rather than a starting point.  If salvation is a new birth, then it would stand to reason that our new life has just begun, right?  Then why is it that so many "Christians" are content with salvation and nothing more? Once they have their spiritual life insurance, they're satisfied to continue as if little has changed when, if they truly accepted Christ as their Savior, everything has changed.

It's a sad truth, but our churches are filled with people going through the motions.  We sing the songs without allowing the message to touch our hearts.  As the preacher preaches, we glance at our watches, all the while wondering what we're going to have for lunch.  And that's what's taking place within the church walls.  What about what's happening (or not happening) outside the walls?  Are we spending regular time with God?  Are we practicing compassion?  Are we reaching out to others?  Are we trying to reach the lost?  Are we seeking God day in and day out?  Or are we content to just be born again?  That's not to say that being saved isn't a wonderful thing because it is, but don't you think God wants more than just a bunch of spiritual babies tottering around?  I think we can all agree that He does.  In fact, the Bible says so: But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen. (II Peter 3:18)

How do we grow in grace?  We seek God.  We spend time with Him.  We hunger and thirst to know Him more, never satisfied with our current spiritual state.  As A.W. Tozer puts it in his book, The Pursuit of God, We have been snared in the coils of a false logic which insists that if we have found Him, we need no more seek Him.  Sure, a saved person "has" God, but with a true Christian, God "has" him.  That is what our churches need.  That is what our homes need.  That is what our country needs.  Forget the programs and the ceremonies.  We don't need the pomp and circumstance.  We need humble hearts united together in the search to know God more.  It all goes back to my earlier post, Medium, Not Rare.  We're settling for too little.  God has so much more in store for us, and we're missing out on it if we're not seeking Him daily with all our hearts.

O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more. I am painfully conscious of my need for further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, so that I may know Thee indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, ‘Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.’ Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long. ― A.W. Tozer

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