Sunday, March 7, 2010

Cheap Grace Part 1

The American church has developed into an enterprise of "cheap grace." "Say this prayer," "shake my hand," and "repeat after me" type of prayers that offer salvation for all eternity are very prevalent today. Jesus' set the terms of discipleship in Matthew 16:24: Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (KJV) Remember that in the first century, Rabbis set their own terms for a disciple. Unlike today's educational system where the student picks who he will study with, in the first century it was the teacher that picked the students. When Jesus approached his disciples, He would extend an invitation to be His disciple. Today, we look at the connection between the call by Jesus and the call to Abram. Both require real faith.

When you accept the call to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, you are answering the call to die to self. When God called Abram, He was telling him to leave his family, his security, and his way of life to go somewhere that he did not know. Abram didn't know the destination when he started his journey. Likewise, when you say, "Yes" to Jesus, you don't know what the journey will be like, but you know the destination. You know that the destination is your death. Death to your ways, will, and desires. It requires real faith to answer that call. Do you have this type of faith? Or, is your faith limited to attempting to manipulate God into giving you what you want if you say the right thing the right number of times. True faith says, "I am willing to die for my Teacher." What are you ready to die for?

Can you say "yes" to the question, "Am I a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ?" This goes so far beyond the issue of church membership, working for the church, or saying the correct "sinners prayer." This is about faith that takes you wherever He leads. Abram didn't know where he was headed, but you do? Have you begun the journey to Calvary?

Cheap grace says what I do doesn't matter because I have "said the prayer." True discipleship is a call to your death. Which have you answered?

No comments: