Christian Success Defined

   Written by on December 22, 2016 at 11:12 am

logo-hevenerHow do you define Christian success?  Is it building fine, massive structures?  Is it having large numbers of attendees?  Is it having a huge church budget? Is it receiving the praise of the government? Is it being lauded by the rich and famous? Is it displaying colorful, fancy, and expensive regalia punctuated by a triple crown? Is it collecting large amounts of money, much of which goes to church management for salaries, benefits, and privileges?

When we compare the hardships, suffering, and simple life-style of Christ and His apostles to the luxury of many Christian leaders today, the differences are glaring, even shocking! Early Christians often met to worship in small groups in homes, fearing both the Roman government and Jewish leaders.

They had none of the luxury, opulence, and finery marked by many Christian churches and church leaders today. In Matthew 8:20 we read, “Jesus saith unto him, the foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the son of man has not where to lay his head.”

What is the Biblical definition of success in the Christian life? Let us review several Bible texts that clearly define the successful Christian life:

• Matthew 28:19-20    “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, {20} “teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Luke 6:46   And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

3.  Luke 11:28   But he said, Yea, rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it. (Emphasis mine.)

John 14:23-  “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. 24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words.” (Emphasis mine.)

The story is told that one day a beggar by the roadside asked for alms from Alexander the Great as he passed by. The man was poor and wretched and had no claim upon the ruler, no right even to lift a solicitous hand. Yet the Emperor threw him several gold coins. A courtier was astonished at his generosity and commented, “Sir, copper coins would adequately meet a beggar’s need. Why give him gold?” Alexander responded in royal fashion, “Cooper coins would suit the beggar’s need, but gold coins suit Alexander’s giving.”  (Source unknown.)

When God gave a gift to mankind, He gave that which was much more precious than gold; He gave His Son, Jesus Christ, who shed His blood to cover your sins and mine if we confess those sins, ask for forgiveness, repent, and turn from them.

Therefore, we learn from Scripture that the successful Christian life is that of believing in and obeying God’s word through the grace of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit.

Until next week, may God richly bless you and yours!

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©2016 by Fillmer Hevener

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