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Friday, November 27, 2009

all things to all men

I’ve had several people tell me and heard the same thing by way of the grapevine, that if we are to win the world we have to participate in their activities. According to this philosophy, we find “Christians” walking, talking and acting like the world.

I will probably step on some toes with today’s thoughts, but we cannot win sinners to Christ if we don’t live a more righteous life than they do. If we go the places they go, no matter what we say, we are not witnessing; we are only holding our claim of Salvation up to ridicule

I’ve known those who claim to love the Lord, but who hang out in places where Jesus couldn’t go.. I’ve known ‘christian’ musicians who play ‘christian’ rock in bars and clubs. How is this possible in light of the scripture: "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them." (Ephesians 5:11)? They feel they can be a witness there, but in reality they are simply allowing any witness they might have to be buried under the weight of immorality and sin in that place

It is easy to be so enthused about ‘witnessing’ to ‘reach people for Christ’ that we allow fleshly hubris to enter in. Then we are drawn away from the purity that is in Jesus. I’ve heard the text from Paul, I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some, applied with some degree of self-righteousness by those who adhere to this philosophy, but his statement must be read in context. Paul wasn’t going into sinful places when he spoke this way. He was speaking of being humble enough to live in the lowest, poorest surroundings or to live comfortably or sometimes among luxurious surroundings for the sake of Christ. He wasn’t concerned for personal comfort; his goal was to see men saved. Paul wasn’t making himself to be ‘sinful’ to see sinners saved.

We must keep in mind the earlier part of the 5th chapter in Ephesians: But immorality (sexual vice) and all impurity in lustful, rich, wasteful living or greediness must not even be named among you, as is fitting and proper among God's consecrated people. Let there be no filthiness-obscenity, indecency- nor foolish and sinful (silly and corrupt) talk, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting or becoming; but instead voice your thankfulness to God. For be sure of this: that no person practicing sexual vice or impurity in thought or in life, or one who is covetous -who has lustful desire for the property of others and is greedy for gain--for he, in effect, is an idolater--has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one delude and deceive you with empty excuses and groundless arguments for these sins, for through these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of rebellion and disobedience. So do not associate or be sharers with them. (Amplified text)

The ones who participate in sinful activities with the assertion that they are ‘witnessing’ are deluding themselves. Those who look on are not seeing a child of God but rather just another fraud. The world knows the scripture better than many religious men do themselves. These Christians are like a parrot who says, “I’m a boy, I’m a boy, I’m a boy” when everyone looking on is amused at his claim because they are seeing a parrot.

Let’s keep Paul’s admonition to the Ephesians clear in our mind. Take no part in and have no fellowship with the fruitless deeds and enterprises of darkness, but instead let your lives be so in contrast as to expose and reprove and convict them. That’s hard to do when we go the same places as sinners do, and play the same kind of music they do and dress the way they do and act the way they do.

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