Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Embarrassment (01/12/12)
- TITLE: Hush! The Devil Approaches!
By Doug Laird
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While I do not recall there ever being a time when I was “ashamed” of the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ, I would have to concede that there were times when I did not share His Word with others for fear of embarrassment.
In the earlier years of my post salvation spiritual life, I knew nothing about the angelic conflict (Isa. 14:13) spiritual combat (Eph. 6), or the production of divine vs. human good.
Like the majority of Christians, I thought purpose of the post salvation spiritual life was to do good deeds and to honor God by living according to Biblical standards.
I gave no thought to the fact that there are many unbelievers who do and did good deeds and live according to many Biblical standards for a variety of different reasons, but unless they are born again, they will be spending all of eternity in the lake of fire.
There is a line of acceptable speech and conduct concerning religious and spiritual issues in this “politically” correct, but ungodly society that has evolved in America.
Within our society, there are what I call sub-culture groups, that have their own norms and standards that redefines acceptable speech and conduct.
In my earlier years, I must concede that I considered the salvation and edification of other people to be their own business, and none of mine.
While I was right about the ultimate choices being the private business between each individual soul and his/her Creator, I was living in denial of what the Great Commission of the Church required of me as an ambassador of Christ.
What we do in the company of fellow-believers gives no cause for embarrassment or challenge.
Talking about “God” usually won’t generate any serious conflicts with worldly people as “God” means different things to different people.
Promoting the concept of “God” will not usually draw any attention from the Ephesians 6:12 forces of evil, as speaking of God in a general sense can reinforce the principles of “religion” that the kingdom of evil promote.
Where the pressure of spiritual combat becomes a challenge, and a potential source of “embarrassment” for many believers, is when the subject of the true Gospel is raised.
While the Gospel is a breath of fresh air to an enlightened soul, it is an odious source of great offence to the non-believer.
A disciple cannot speak of the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 10:30) or the need to be born again (John 3:3) without stirring a Romans 8:7, “hostile” response from unbelievers.
A disciple cannot share an edifying passage of Scripture with a back-sliding believer without raising the hostility of the fallen nature that remains within us, even after we are born again (Romans 7).
Rather or not the hostile reaction is overt or not, it is still there.
It is a fear of personal rejection and or persecution that ALL true disciples will encounter from time to time in their walk with the Lord that the forces of evil will use to impede either the Gospel or an edifying passage of Scripture from being promoted.
Fear of being publicly ostracized in any personal or social environment is a form of embarrassment that will silence the verbal testimony of most believers, concerning their faith. For this reason, most believers do not share their faith outside of Christian circles.
The ironic thing is that if given the opportunity, none of us would hesitate to warn a total stranger about sitting down in what we knew to be a defective chair. Yet, how many of us would have an equal desire to speak to the same stranger about the Gospel or an edifying passage of Scripture?
Whenever an ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ is in the presence of an unbeliever or a backsliding believer, he/she is in enemy territory.
The soul of the unbeliever or the soul of the backsliding believer is being influenced by the fallen nature within him/her.
The soul of an unbeliever and the soul of a backsliding believer is receptive to the concepts encouraged by the Ephesians 6:12 forces of evil, and are hostile towards God and the things of God (Romans 8:7).
It is natural to be avoiding embarrassment, but disciples are not called to do what is natural, but what is supernatural, with the enabling power of God (John 15:5).
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