Christian Failures by Deniz22
Can We Christians Ultimately Fail to Live Life As Christians?|
Our answer will probably reflect our theology (or gut instinct). Many systems of Christian thought immediately and resoundingly answer:NO! Their reply is based on the belief Christians will always consistently bear some fruit if they are true believers.
This position allows them to conveniently "dump" or disavow some who mouth their creeds but lack any visible deeds. Everyone wants to go with the "winners" on this matter, and these "losers" make us and our creeds look bad simply by association.
Yet in light of Scripture, the simple "no" is inadequate to cover the subject. For instance, what about the Christian who seemingly has lived a number of years producing "fruit" and yet suddenly (it appears) turns away from the faith? Was it all a sham? We all know some who once burned brightly for Christ, but now are simply smoldering in the debris of their own actions.
And then there are others who seem to imitate a yo-yo in their spiritual experience. They are cool to the things of the Lord until a crisis comes into their lives which motivates them to seek the Lord. Having been aided by God, in answer to their desperate prayers, they slowly drift away again until the next crisis brings them back.
So what does the Scripture say about all of these varying negative experiences? Can one truly be a Christian who fits these descriptions of failure?
The Apostle Paul reminds us in 2 Timothy 2:19a (NKJV)
19a. "Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: "The Lord knows those who are His."
The plain fact of the matter is Christians can fail, and fail visibly and miserably. We can fail so badly that we give up our hope in Christ, even though we are born-again and already possess eternal life (John 5:24).
When this spiritual collapse happens in the life of a believer, he goes into darkness and simply has no assurance within himself of his true standing with God.
2 Peter 1:9 "For he who lacks these things (Christian virtues coming from growth in grace) is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins."
Yet God knows who are His, even when we don't, as Paul stated to Timothy in 2:19.
Some teach true believers will always come back to God, even though they might fall into sin for a period of time. Alas, both experience and scripture argue against this view. Christians can live their earthly lives out in defeat and fruitlessness.
A strong statement, but one borne out by Paul's description of such cases at the judgment seat of Christ. This judgment is only about works and therefore, only true believers are present to be rewarded for their works for Christ. .Paul gives us a worst case scenario of one arriving there who has NO SPIRITUAL WORKS!
1 Corinthians 3:15: "If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire."
Let us rejoice in God who keeps His Word of eternal salvation to the weakest believer in all situations, whether in defeat or victory. Let us take heart when beaten and recover to win again for Christ by heeding the Apostle's admonition to all believers:
"Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. 36 For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:37 "For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry." Hebrews 10:35-37 (NKJV)
Some will immediately say, "See! You have to do the will of God or you're not saved!" The answer to all such is that anyone who has ever trusted Christ to save them, has done the will of God by trusting Christ.
John 6:40 "And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day."
As soon as one believes, he becomes a possessor of eternal life. John 5:24
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