The Christian’s life is a fight.
It’s a fight against a world that believes the Gospel is foolishness. We are indeed in a fight against this world. We live in a society that shows itself daily to be against God and His Word. The blatant disregard for His law, the overt protest against those who would dare live their lives according to the Bible. This world is a battle field and many a Christian has found themselves in thick, bloody battle against it.
The world we live in is at war with the Christian in many ways. It seeks to influence the lifestyle of the Christian, hoping to make it indistinguishable from that of the unbeliever. Compromise and complacency are often shrouded in the cloak of enjoyment or simply trying to “fit in.” We as Christians make a mistake when we try to look a certain way to please those around us. The pressure of our society can worm its way into our lives quite subtly if we are not on guard against it. We become ok with doing things we would not do in a church or Christian context. Now I realize convictions change and grow and I completely agree that is a natural part of growing in Christ. That is not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about allowing the world to conform us to itself, instead of us conforming to Christ. The way we talk, the things we watch, the jokes we are ok with can all be signs of a life that is perhaps too influenced by the world around it.
Now, before you label this a legalist post, just hear me out. What I am not saying is that our works or actions cause us to be saved. I am not saying that being a Christian is about doing or not doing things. I am not saying that Christians who do or don’t do things I disagree with are somehow “less glorifying” to God. Not at all. I truly believe there are issues in Scripture where we can unite in calling them sin. Then, there are the secondary issues that arise that must be handled with love and grace at all times. However, part of spurring one another on toward righteousness is pointing out areas of concern or possible danger in each other’s lives. I am very thankful for the men and women in my life that come alongside me and encourage me in my walk. It is indeed a great blessing and we should all be thankful for it.
The world will try to dictate your life as well. Telling you to say or not say something. They will ridicule you, call you unwise and foolish, seek to lure you away with their worldly wisdom. They will take you gently by the arm and tell you “it’s ok..don’t rock the boat, just keep the Jesus stuff to yourself.” Have unity at the sake of everything they will say. Simply coexist. All truth is relative. Don’t offend. Don’t preach the Gospel. Don’t talk about sin or wrath. If you do, if you decide to take a stand for Christ in this world, be prepared for all hell to break loose. They will call us bigots, intolerant, backward thinking, self-righteous, unconforming, Bible spewing, Jesus loving, Christians. They will do this because the Gospel is foolishness to those without Christ. Jesus said in John 15:18-21,
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: 'A servant is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.”
Christian, we are at war with the world. It seeks to silence the message of the Gospel because it’s offensive. It brings to light the deeds that are done in darkness. It convicts and illuminates the truth everyone knows to be true, they are lost in their sin. Fight against the world, not by picketing or boycotting. Not by social activism or trying to “make America Christian again.” We make war with the world by simply lifting Christ even higher. Shouting the loving Gospel even louder. Pursuing Christ in our lives even harder than we do now. This is what they world needs to see. This is how we influence and live in this world. This is how we make war.