The Christian faith demands a lot from believers. From moral uprightness to sharing the gospel, there is always something we can improve on or an area we can grow in. It seems, however, that the list is never-ending. For some, there is a “limit” to how upright they are or how many people they have evangelized. It is sort of like saying, “I’ve reached my goal. Now it’s finished. I’m done.”
The concern that I have, however, is this: Christ has called us to give all of ourselves up to Him, for only then will we reap the benefits of a relationship with Him.
And He said to all, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? For whoever is ashamed of Me and of My words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when He comes in His glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels…”
– Luke 9:23-26
You will seek Me and find Me, when you seek Me with all your heart.
– Jeremiah 29:13
You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
– Matthew 5:48
I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.
– Revelation 3:15-16
When I say “concern”, it does mean that I have a problem with it; the problem being the high standard. In my sinful nature, I cannot fully give myself completely to the Lord and submit to His will. I am still called, however, to live in holiness and obedience. In my interpretation, this means that regardless of my capabilities, I must continue to strive for perfection in Christ. Never stopping, never ending, for the rest of my life. In all this striving, I become more and more Christ-like, ultimately drawing closer to the heart of God.
If I stop striving and become lukewarm, I miss out on all the lessons God could have taught me if I remained in the faith. I also miss out on lessons that can be learned from prolonged persistence in my walk with Him.
In being lukewarm, which in my definition is still calling myself a saved believer, yet living like someone who’s unsaved, I set a bad example for younger believers, discourage peer and older believers, and misrepresent Christ and the Church. I should pretty much give up any claim on the title of a Christian, lest my actions become a stumbling block to others.
Hot or cold… which one will I choose to be? Will I give all of myself, or nothing at all?
In the eyes of the world, it may be two extremes; a black or white; however in the eyes of God, it’s simply a commitment I must keep.