Yesterday, we identified the problem of godlessness in our society and we introduced the solution to the problem. What about those of us who are trying to live the Christian life? What should we do? Here are four imperatives to remember as you and I seek to live godly in a godless society:
First, the Word is forever (Psa. 119:89). Cultures will shift as imperfect people continue to be carried away by sin (James 1:13-16), but God’s Word will never change. Read it (Eph. 3:4), study it (2 Tim. 2:15), soak it in (Psa. 119:11), and live it (Psa. 119:17).
Second, the world won’t understand (1 John 3:13). John reminds us that we shouldn’t find it strange if the world hates us. In fact, the world hated Jesus (John 15:18; 17:14). “All who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12). We are strangers and pilgrims here (Heb. 11:13; 1 Pet. 2:11; 4:4), because our home is in heaven. Today, we work and we suffer for the cause of Christ, but in the bright tomorrow, we will rest (Rev. 14:13), reap (Gal. 6:9), and realize that it was worth it all (Rom. 8:18; cf. 2 Pet. 2:9).
Third, we exist to share the message (Mat. 5:16; 28:19-20). Paul reminds us that “we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works” (Eph. 2:10). If the message will be spread, we – and only we – will be the ones to spread it. If we decide to hide that message, then we are veiling it “to those who are perishing” (2 Cor. 4:3-7). This is serious business.
Fourth, love is imperative (Eph. 4:15). It doesn’t matter how well we speak, what talents we have, or how seemingly selfless we may be; if we lack love, our work is pointless (1 Cor. 13:1-3). Love neither excuses sin nor compromises God’s truth. Instead, love introduces the sinner to God’s only way of salvation (John 14:6; Acts 2:38; Rom. 6:1-4, etc.).
Of this I am sure: Jesus is the only hope for our godless society. In what ways are you reflecting His light today (1 Pet. 2:21-24)?
[box type=”info” align=”aligncenter” ]Parts 1 and 2 of this article were originally published in the Ichthys magazine, which is available from my friends over at The Ministry Source. Check out their website to read this month’s issue of Ichthys and to find more information and resources.[/box]