So, isn’t it a bit odd that people who say they believe Christ died for their sins aren’t the least bit curious about who He is and what He taught while He was here? Jesus spent the better part of three years teaching his disciples all sorts of things such as what His mission was (John 1:14-18) and how they were to conduct themselves.
The Lord gave commands, not suggestions. He never said: “It’s not a good idea to murder someone…lie…cheat…steal…sleep around…commit adultery…practice homosexual sex…get drunk…use drugs…have a slew of idols, or anything like that.” Nor did He say: “It would be nice if you’d consider forgiving those who do you wrong.” He never tossed them the “Good job!” compliment when they exercised discernment. Neither was Jesus into high-fiving and “atta boys.” Whenever these sorts of things came up in conversation, He said unequivocally, “Do not”…”You must!” Moreover, He was clear that in order to be saved people must repent of their sins and turn away from the sinful life. “If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us” (1 John 1:10).
And trust me when I say that there’s no way He would have said to one of His followers: “God smiles when you be you.”
Keeping Jesus’ commands begins with knowing what they are and then, of course, obeying them. The Lord said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:15).
If you love me…
So, could a person become a member of the armed forces without ever having gone through some form of basic training? No! The expressed purpose for a soldier to go through boot camp is to learn to become a lean mean fighting machine. Soldiers leave boot camp with the general knowledge they need to go into combat and fight a brutal enemy, with their goal being to win! Men and women who don’t understand the rules of engagement, what weapons to use in battle and how to use them effectively, will end up on the losing end.
During the 1960s when the battle for the hearts and minds of Americans first began, what if professing evangelicals had understood that we were in the beginning stages of the “culture war”? What if evangelicals had gone all out to stop the small number of progressives from taking control of public schools…higher education…entertainment industry…media… politics…courts…the scientific community and so on?