I came across a verse that I have read before but it really made me think in light of the state of many Christian churches today. Deuteronomy 5:28-29 says, “And the Lord heard your words, when you spoke to me. And the Lord said to me, ‘I have heard the words of this people, which they have spoken to you. They are right in all that they have spoken. Oh that they had such a heart as this always, to fear me and to keep all my commandments, that it might go well with them and with their descendants forever!” In context, this is following Moses’ recounting to the people how when God spoke to them from the mountain they came to Moses and asked him to go to talk to God alone because they were afraid that if they conversed with God like Moses did they would be killed. Then God says basically, they are right to fear me, I wish they would always feel this way so that they would keep my commandments. Sadly they did not continue to fear God as they should and I believe that many Christians today are in the same boat. They have become ‘posers’…on the outside they seem Christian, they may even go through the motions, but in their heart they don’t really fear God and so they don’t see any reason to follow His commandments.
One reason I believe this has happened is we hold onto verse like Hebrews 4:16 where in the KJV it says, “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Isolating this verse can lead to all sorts of theological issues, including believing that we can demand things from God. There are also the issues sometimes brought up because of isolation of the word ‘boldly’. There are many Christians who seem to think that this means we should stroll in the presence of God as if we own the place and can obtain or demand whatever we want. This is most often associated with the “name it and claim it” or “prosperity gospel, where they believe that if you claim something like a new house God will give it to you, as if God is some kind of genie around just to grant you wishes. Unfortunately this is not Biblical, not even in the context of this Hebrews verse. The previous verses tell us that we must strive (work hard) to be ready to give an account to the one whom knows all and sees all, even the hidden intentions and motivations of our heart, BUT because we have Jesus as our savior we can come into the presence of God as one with the right to be there, not as one who should be killed for being in the presence of the King. This does not give us the right to demand anything from God, but as Philippians 4:6 says, “…in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
This lack of fear of God lead us to forget that Jesus himself said, “Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me (John 14:21).” If you claim to love God, then by God’s own Word you should be following what He has commanded. A verse most of you will probably be familiar with is Matthew 28:19 which says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Unfortunately we often stop there and call it “The Great Commission” and skip the rest of the sentence. The period at the end of Matthew 28:19 as above IS NOT THERE. What is there is a comma and the rest of the sentence falls within verse 20 and reads, “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” We are supposed to be making disciples, baptizing them and teaching them to follow ALL that Jesus commanded. This also mean as we were supposed to be made disciples in the same way, we should be following His commands for no other motivation but because we love Him and want to show Him how much we love him.
So evaluate for yourself are you being a true disciple (Christian) or are you being a poser. Just a note of warning 1 John 1:5-10 tells us exactly where ‘poser christianity” leaves us. Remember who it is we are talk about here, God the All-Powerful Creator and Judge of the universe who said this about Himself, “I the Lord your God am a jealous God”. In Matthew 6:24 Jesus tells us, “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon [money, possessions, fame, status, or whatever is valued more than the Lord].” Be careful who you serve.