“And the king said unto Araunah, “Nay; but I will surely buy it from thee at a price; neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the Lord my God of that which doth cost me nothing.” -2 Samuel 24:24
Cheap grace: just another way of describing the Gospel that is being peddled by the neo-evangelicals. A costless Christianity. Eternal life at wholesale-club prices.
Jesus loves everybody, don’t you know? The churches are full of “saved” people. Folks who have tipped-their-toe in the blood of Jesus and now count themselves “worthy” of entering into eternal peace.
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Walking an aisle and saying a prayer was all that was required of them. “Just invite Jesus into your heart and allow Him to wash away all of your sins. Jesus Saves!”
Yes, indeed, He does save. But save from what? Toe-tipping in the blood is the beginning, not the end-all of Christianity. Our padded pews are populated by people who have no idea of the price that our precious Savior paid. Sadly, most people are happy to be “saved” TO Heaven, but fail to realize that they are also saved FROM eternal damnation. Salvation is on sale at bargain-basement prices at your local entertainment center masquerading as a church.
Let me ask you a direct question. What has your salvation cost you?
I know, I know…Jesus paid it all. I understand you cannot “earn” your way unto salvation. But at the same time, what has your salvation cost you? What did Paul mean when he told us to “present your body a living sacrifice?” What did he mean when he said “I die daily?” What did Jesus mean when He said “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me?”
Is it possible to call oneself a Christian and not have any scars to show for it? Jesus warned us “And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” Endure what? Is that the message you hear in your church? Does your pastor tell you that Christianity is offense to the lost? Does He tell you that Jesus Himself was known as “the Rock of offense?” Does that sound like Joel Osteen’s approach to the Gospel? Does that remind you of Rick Warren, or perhaps even YOUR pastor?
Offensive Christians? Wow…that doesn’t seem very Christian, now does it?
I hate to be the offensive one, but Jesus said we are the salt…not the sugar…of the earth. The salt has lost His savor. We have so sweetened the Gospel that it has lost its effectiveness. You really want know what is missing in our churches? Bad people. Bad people are missing from our churches. Our pews are packed with “good” people. We have lost sight of how wretched man really is. “And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? None is good, save one, that is, God.” All of us, apart from Jesus, are bad to the bone. We need to return to a Gospel that continually reminds us of this fact.
The New Testament church was birthed into poverty, prison and persecution. According to the Word, persecution was spiritual fertilizer for “the more they persecuted them the more they prospered and grew.” But today’s Christianity eschews suffering and persecution. There is no call to die daily, to take up one’s cross, or to be hated of all men.
Jesus is all about love, remember? Haven’t the god-haters scolded you with “who are you to judge?”
The modern church has traded poverty, prison, and persecution for popularity, personality, and prosperity. When was the last time your pastor told you that your salvation will cause you to be hated? And not just hated, but “hated of all men”; a double-dose brought about by speaking the Truth. Can you find even ONE command anywhere inside the dusty Bible on your nightstand where you are promised that you will be LOVED for being a believer?
Nope. Quite the opposite. “Friendship with the world is enmity with God.” Sorry friends, but the world is supposed to hate you. “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.”
Everyone wants to follow Jesus…until they find out where He’s going. He’s going to the cross and He commands us to take up ours too and follow after him. But that kind of preaching doesn’t build a pastor a big church. They whipped Jesus. They beat Him about the face. They spat upon Him and nailed Him to a tree.
What has your Christianity cost you?
Can I lay it on the line for you? Jesus hates. That’s right. Jesus hates. He hates lots of stuff. He hates “a proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren…and all workers of iniquity.”
Why is the church so anxious to embrace everything that He hates? Why are Christians so in love with the world?
Abandonment theology is sweeping this nation. I call it the Gospel according to Alfred E. Newman. “What, Me Worry?” It has neutered the church.
Warn the wicked, the Bible teaches. “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” “The wicked shall be turned into hell and all of the nations that forget God.” Psalm 9:17
When Jesus returns He will be riding a white horse “and in righteousness He doth judge and make war.” Who will He be judging and with whom will He be making war? That question seems to be pretty important.
That will be a terrible day. There will be a sharp sword (the Word of God) protruding out of His mouth. Sadly, most of the preachers have replaced the sword with a flower.
“God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day. If he turn not, he will whet his sword; he hath bent his bow, and made it ready.” Rev. 19.
If God is love and Jesus loves everybody, He sure has a funny way of showing it. Speaking the Truth may fill your church, but compromising on it will surely enlarge hell.
I ask you again…what has your salvation cost you?
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