On the Plains of Moab Blog
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September 5, 2011, 10:37 AM

Faithfulness, Not Perfection



There always things in sermons that a preacher offers up with fear and trembling.  yesterday, I had one of those moments.  It was with this statement:

"The life that God desires for us doesn’t mean that we are [or become] perfect people.  It means that we become faithful people in ever-increasing measure."

That was a big one!  The reason it kind of spooks me is that you have to realize that you can't say everything when you say something.  Now, if I was a well-known, famous pastor -- which I am not -- this remark might well have created a major theological storm with relentless, harsh critiques; with many wondering whether or not I had strayed from the orthodox fold.  (Christian bloggers and writers, in general, tend to be very nice and gracious in person; but it seems their evil twins do all of their writing.)

"What do you mean that God doesn't want us to be perfect?"  "Isn't that the point of sanctification?"  "Isn't the goal of a Christian life to pursue holiness?"  "Isn't that what God is going to do in our lives?"  Well, the answers, in order, are:  "Of course He does."  "Yes!"  "You betcha!" And "Absolutely, He will!"

But, the point the "preacher" in Hebrews is trying  (I think)  to make is:  Don't get discouraged.  Keep going to the finish line.  If we stop to take inventory of all our failures and backslidings -- we will never get there.

The reality of life is that we are redeemed sinners who are along the way.  That process of sanctification that God has begun in your life will have many ups and downs.  Your biggest responsibility is faithfulness.  That's where your sweat is required.  That's where we all must wrestle with the blows we get from everyday life.  And that is where so many of us fail.

Holiness happens in God's time; faithfulness happens in our time.

As I said yesterday -- keep the faith!

 

ONE OTHER THING WHILE I'M AT IT...

I feel compelled to address another extremely important matter in the sermon overflow this morning.  It is the line that drew the chirping of crickets:  The man Gideon having a mind like a bed.  Before he can use it, somebody has to make it up for him.

Gideon, you will recall, was the one who put out the fleece many times before he finally trusted God.

Anyway -- I persist... Come on, man, that was funny!


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