Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Outstanding (04/21/11)
TITLE: Normal and Outstanding Christianity
By Michael Chu
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Indeed, the hallmark of a Christian is love. He can’t help it, for God is love and “the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (Romans 5:5, NKJV). As the practicing Christian abide in the Lord and His word abide in Him, the Holy Spirit will help him to love his brother (whom he can see) and not just God alone (whom he cannot yet see).
Thus, it is not uncommon and not surprising for the world to set a higher standard of expectation for Christian conduct.
Within the church, human as we are while in fellowship with the Immortal One, we too have our own expectation of fellow Christians. Alas, very often we make the mistake of looking at the form rather than the substance of Christianity. For example, we tend to equate an outwardly religious Christian with godliness. Look no further than Jesus Christ Himself. He was deemed too radical by the religious leaders of His days!
Consider also: “If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless” (James 1:26, NKJV). “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world” (James 1:27, NKJV).
Who then is an outstanding Christian amongst Christians? (Rest assured, we are neither the first nor the last to entertain such a query!) A loving Christian who does the will of God is normal Christianity. An outstanding Christian is one who is the servant to others.
Has not Jesus said: “But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:11, NKJV)? On this humbling note, let’s begin by appreciating and honoring those who serve us.
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