The reality of death is a confrontational foe - or in some cases a friend - that never ceases to knock on the door of our human consciousness. Its looming presence is kept at bay for much of our life until we are given windows into the eternal while attending a funeral service or possibly when receiving an ominous doctor’s report. There is only one weapon we can use when coming face to face with mankind’s greatest enemy—faith.
Jesus had just landed on the South East shore of the Sea of Galilee and went into the land of the Gadarenes. The city of Gadara was successful, modern and very beautiful. Their lives were well ordered, quiet and going in the right direction. There was one crazy man who lived in the many limestone caves and tombs that would occasionally ruin their peace—so they stayed away from his “turf”. (Mark 5:1-17) Verse 17 of the account says this, "And they began to pray him to depart out of their coasts." The word pray is parakaleo. This is the same word often interpreted as to encourage and even to beg. They were saying in a sense something like this - "PLEASE LEAVE - NOW!!" Jesus You disturb us.
What is it that keeps so many from following the Christ of Christianity? In casual conversation a consistent reoccurring theme is revealing, Church and Church people keep many from pursuing a meaningful faith in Jesus Christ. I have been a Senior Pastor for over twenty years; church is my ‘business.’ I have to admit however, I understand this disillusionment. Churchianity (not a real word by the way!) is all too often the marketing of Jesus Christ with a well developed behavioral modification program. Churchianity comes with its own vocabulary, perfect problem solving capabilities and a plethora of our own slogans on car bumper stickers traveling throughout our country.
About twenty years ago, after enduring a lingering pain in my arm, it was recommended to me that I visit a Chiropractor. After a few x-rays and other exams he told me my spine was out of alignment, and probably had been for quite some time. The doctor informed me that many people are living life with spinal misalignments, causing many conditions that all too often go totally unnoticed.
If the good news of the Gospel is really true, and it is, why do so many of us never seem to relax in our relationship with God? Why do the pure in heart always question their standing with God, doubting its power and validity? Why does so much preaching today sound like this, “you otta, you betta, you shoulda, and why didn’t ya?” And, oh yeah, “It’s your fault!” There is a common culprit that we will call the trinity of wrong righteousness. This trinity is a common offender and a formidable foe that impacts and infects more believers than we have even imagined.
We are exhorted in Proverbs 3:5 to "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not to thy own understanding." Though we know this is true and right, we consistently neglect eternal Bible truths, and we enter into being occupied with self instead of being occupied with Christ's finished work. The great ambition of the Christian is to have our positional truth become our experiential reality.