Unashamed Christians

April 19, 2013

Unashamed Christians

            More than once my heart has been broken when I heard of the sin of someone who claimed to be a Christian.  My heart is even more grieved to know that they have little regret or shame for what they have done.

God wants his people to glorify him.  I too want to be identified with people who glorify God.  God’s desire for his people is found in II Corinthians 2:14-17.  “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.    For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?   For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.” Unfortunately, some people’s Christianity is so weak that, instead of honoring him, they disgrace him.

We do well to give serious consideration to the words we find in Malachi 1:6-9. “A son honoureth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, Wherein have we despised thy name? Ye offer polluted bread upon mine altar; and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, The table of the LORD is contemptible.   And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts. And now, I pray you, beseech God that he will be gracious unto us: this hath been by your means: will he regard your persons? saith the LORD of hosts.”

We no longer offer bread or animals on God’s altar, but we can still be guilty of belittling God when we offer poor excuses for not honoring or serving him.  By our attitude and actions we make it obvious that, for us, material possessions are more important than the things of God.  Our physical comforts and wellbeing often take priority over the will and work of God.

Are there any who would be willing to miss a meal to be able to fulfill a commitment they have made to God?  When friends or relatives unexpectedly drop in on Sunday morning, why are there so few Christians who would say, “I’m glad you came, but we always go to church on Sunday morning.  Why don’t you come with us?” No, we don’t offer stale bread or sick animals on God’s alter.  Neither should we offer him that which cost us little or nothing.

By what we offer to God we show to the world that we esteem God worthy of honor.  Believers are mistaken if they try to persuade their unsaved friends or relatives to seek God by saying, “Look, it’s easy.  You don’t have to make any sacrifices.” If they succeed in winning some with that argument, they too will be weak Christians which bring little honor to God.

God is deserving of the best we can give him.  Psalm 96 commands us to proclaim the glory of God to the nations.  Verse three says, “Declare his glory among the heathen, his wonders among all people.” Farther on, in verses 8-9 of that Psalm, we read “Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts.    O worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth.”  Luke 6:38 says, “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.”  By what we give to God we show the world that we believe he is worthy of glory and honor.  We also have the promise of receiving blessing from God when we honor him by what we give him.

All of us are capable of falling into some gross sin and bringing disgrace on the name of God.  That can happen if we let our hearts grow cold towards God.  That’s why we need to continually do what the Apostle Paul tells us to do in Romans 12:1.  “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”


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