Over the years I have heard numerous new Christians complain about the complexity of the Christian walk. Frustration over trying to "figure out" how to be a good Christian has forced more than one believer to throw up his hands and blow the whole idea off. Like anything profound in life, the key to being able to grasp the concept and actually DO IT lies in the ability to keep things simple. The walk and lifestyle of a Christian does not have to be as complicated as a Calculus class in college. Here is an example of how to keep our Christian walk simple.
Look at Titus 2:11-14:
"For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.
Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.
Who gave himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works."
-this simply means to reject, renounce or disown whatever is opposed to God. Whether in our minds, bodies, homes or lifestyles; we should isolate those things which are opposed to God and reject or disown them. If a worldly CD causes your mind to think things contrary to God, then get rid of it. If a certain television show immediately gets you "out of fellowship", quit watching it. The first step in learning the Christian walk is to isolate and eliminate things that are opposed to God.
DENYING WORLDLY LUSTS
-this also implies rejecting, renouncing and disowning something; but here it is dealing specifically with worldly lust. Worldly lusts are simply whatever constitutes sinful worldly desires in a believer's life. God has planted within us the desire to please HIM. The world has programmed us desire what it offers. The battle in our minds is one of rejecting worldly desires, which is what the flesh wants, and accepting the desire to please God which is what He wants.
-although this may appear to be dealing with alcohol, the idea of living soberly is really that of exercising self-restraint or self-control. Of course, if a person did this in respect to alcohol, they would stay sober. There are too many potential pitfalls awaiting believers to allow the mind to become intoxicated or dulled by drugs, alcohol or any other influence which stupefies it. To live soberly is very similar to saying "stay alert".
-to live righteously is not so much in relation to God as it is to behave in a just and right manner before men. To "live right" is the manifestation of "being right" in one's relationship and fellowship with God. By our fruit we are known and others need to see the good fruit of righteousness we produce when we live according to the standard of God's Word. As believers, we strive to think, act and speak that which is right and proper per God's definition.
-here is where our "righteous living" in respect to God enters the picture. Just as we strive to "live right" before men; we strive to live in a godly manner to bless God. To live in a godly manner is to be pious, but not religious. There is a dignity about us when we are living in a godly way. The easiest way to think of this is to imagine how Jesus would live if He were here now. It is not so much what Jesus would do as how Jesus would live and think.
LOOKING FOR THE BLESSED HOPE AND GLORIOUS APPEARING
-there is no way to endure the pressures and pleasures we are daily bombarded with in this life without keeping our eyes on our "happy hope" or the hope which imparts happiness. This is the motivating factor in being willing to live in an ethical and upright manner, which is what the preceding things were all speaking about. Without the hope of Christ's appearing burning in our heart, we will surely "burn out" and fail in our walk.
ZEALOUS FOR GOOD WORKS
-Jesus Christ gave Himself for us so that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify us for Himself a special people. This is the reason we strive to live in a manner pleasing to Him. We are zealous for good works because of all He did for us, not because "we have to". We endeavor to walk uprightly and in a godly manner because we are "special" to Him. He gave His live so we can be a pure bride to Him. That is what this is all about.
If we reject all that is opposed to God and sinful worldly desires; and if we live exercising self-restraint, righteously and in a godly manner we will be zealous for good works. We do all this keenly looking for the coming of our groom to gather us to Him and to be with Him forever more. We do all this so that we can be chaste and pure when He appears. We do all this because we so love Him for all He did for us in giving His life a ransom for our sins.
Jesus Christ has redeemed us from every lawless deed we ever committed in our lives. Every sin we ever committed was totally washed away when we got saved. Now we are to be zealous to please Him through our good works. Not to be saved, but to be able to present ourselves pure and chaste at His appearing. This is our very reason for living.
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