Faith Baptist Church
4258 Botetourt Road
Fincastle, Virginia 24090
One of the divine decrees we struggle with in Christianity is attaining the level of personal holiness which God expects of us. We fall short too often of not practicing godly righteousness, Rom.8:29; Phil.2:5. This loosing struggle is unfortunately a common, yet deplorable aspect of Christianity. It is what we might call the Corinthian syndrome, I Cor.3:1-3. We often make a mockery of the family of God before the world as they watch us bite and devour one another in our pursuit to have our own way and toot our own horn. This bane has defined the church of the 20th century, and it is in full bloom now in the 21st century. Materialism and humanism has left its mark on us all. We have not received enough Bible doctrine to shed our entanglement in this epidemic of our day.
This is why we should demand and receive expository preaching and teaching from our pulpits so God would have the expression of his word put plainly out in front of us.
We need to have the strings of this temporal world unloosened from us. We know God is always leading in this effort, but we are not always following. We often pray for God to lead us, and yet when we have the opportunity to be lead in the teaching of the word of God we forsake it for some materialistic, or humanistic philosophical reason such as our immediate needs, our family, our work, or our pleasure. These are important, but we need his word if we are going to do better, and if we want to be a happier believer.
The Lord Jesus Christ has already secured for us our righteous and holy position in God’s family. Within this sacred, secured position we have the grand opportunity to honor God with our lives by making personal choices to live holy and righteous lives. We call the living out of this holy and righteous life, the perseverance of the saints. This perseverance is not a works for salvation; it is the maintaining of our individual Christian faith and our Christian commitments to that faith until the end of our lives. We can do better.
Jesus Christ agonized to provide our righteous standing with the Father, and no amount of effort on our part to be righteous and acceptable to God was possible. This was Christ’s lot toward mankind as he offered us full reconciliation to God. We could do nothing to positionally reconcile ourselves to God, however, we too have our lot. We are called to strive in living out the concepts and precepts of that divine imputed righteousness. He made it possible for us to live holy lives, but all of us have to choose to practice that holiness, Phil.3:13-16; II Tim.2:5. We all can do better, but will we?
Obtaining and retaining eternal life is not our pursuit once we are saved; that is what Jesus Christ has secured for us in his death and resurrection. Because we have believed in him for the forgiveness of sins we are saved and we are called to pursue the things associated with eternal life. This is why we must not strive over petty things which hinder fellowship and function in the body of Christ. We must not pursue positions of power over one another. To think we could in any way advance our standing in Christ by lifting up ourselves is foolish. To think we could some how position ourselves for receiving greater favor with God by stepping on others, or outshining others is even more foolish.
Brethren we all can make a more determined effort to find ways to follow holy living, and we must do this without imposing our efforts on others. Too often when men try to live holy lives they feel they must get everyone else on board with their methods.
We must simply learn the word of God and apply it for ourselves. Personal holiness is not us making others see things the way we see them. It is not getting others to do as we do. Personal holiness is living the life the Bible shows us how to live. We can all do better.