Thursday, April 9th, 2015
Soldier's Orders (Part 1)
The Baby Brigade
We have much to say about this, but it is hard to make it clear to you because you no longer try to understand. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's Word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
Hebrews 5:11-14 (NIV)
Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of Him Who is the Head, that is, Christ. From Him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.
Ephesians 4:14-16 (NIV)
Actors, models and talent for Christ: consider yourselves in boot camp. I'm there, too. Together, we must grow up in Christ: built up in love, as each part does its work.
Because we're in a war right now. Because you have a dream to perform. Because you have a destiny to lead. Because you have a duty to fight, 'As a good soldier of Christ Jesus' (2 Timothy 2:3).
I remain deeply concerned with the state of the American church. In specific, I know amazing Christians on the front lines. Every day, they 'Fight the good fight of faith' (1 Timothy 6:12). Their movement is apparent, dramatic, inspiring and effective. They walk in the power of God.
But in general, I believe many American Christians fall in one of two categories:
1) Cultural Christians: people who talk the talk but don't walk the walk. They are form without substance, words without heart, and 'Wells without water' (2 Peter 2:17). They bear a striking resemblance to the world's most successful people, with an extra dose of smugness: self-righteousness outsiders despise.
2) Baby Christians: true lovers of Jesus who are carried, but don't walk: they smile, coo and give sweet hugs. They eat baby formula mixed by pastors who run their churches like fast-food restaurants: the menu is quick and tasty, but the nourishment is missing. Therein, congregational growth is stunted.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: You've been called to lead a cultural revolution. It's not an overthrow, but a revolt in the root meaning of the word: to turn or roll back.* Therein, your job is two-fold:
A. To turn the heads of non-believers toward God, as they see Him in you. Countless generations of Christians have snuggled down in a church of conformity. Strangers were disrespected, disregarded and disheartened by the rules of a social club they did not understand.
B. To roll back your brethren to the Rock, to their Origin and to His Word. Because our world cries out in desperation for God's messengers: big-hearted, joy-filled, cross-bearing soldiers. The Great Commission awaits. Although the news is good, its delivery's not easy.
Time is short. The remainder of this devotion series focuses on some hard Orders of Jesus: Commands seldom preached on Easy Street.**
To Be Continued...
* Revolution's root meaning: http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=revolution&searchmode=none
** The Narrow Way: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+7%3A13-14&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Soldier's Orders series.