The Daily Paine

The counsel of the Spirit of God to the Saints is that they must allow nothing worldly in themselves while living among the worldly in the world.”
–Oswald Chambers

“At no time, perhaps, since the Reformation have Christians as a body been so unsure, tentative, and confused as to what they should believe and do.  Certainly about the great issues of Christian faith and conduct is lacking all along the line.  The outside observer sees us as staggering on from gimmick to gimmick and stunt to stunt like so many drunks in a fog, not knowing at all where we are or which way we should be going.  Preaching is hazy; heads are muddled; hearts fret; doubts drain our strength; uncertainty paralyzes action.”
–J.I. Packer

Paul speaks about “carnal Christians” in the Book of Corinthians.  I have wondered about that term, and I’ve wondered whether there can be such a person.  Looking around me, there is much evidence of what I would call a double-minded Christian.  Now in reality that is not possible, for a person is either of Christ or of the world, but at times it is hard to tell the difference.  James writes that a “double-minded” man is unstable in all his ways.  The true Christian is solid and stable because his life is based on his faith in Christ.
Tozer said that the church has “edited Jesus down.”  When we read the Gospels and Jesus makes a statement or gives a command, we edit it down to say that He really meant this or meant that.  We think that it would be too cruel for us to think that He really would say such things, such as demanding our loyalty and love even above family.  Jesus doesn’t offer salvation “as though it is a decoration or a corsage or some addition to our garb.” (Tozer)  Salvation is not passive, it is rugged action.  Picking up a cross and bearing it is not for the weak-hearted.  No matter our opinion, we cannot do as we please.  We cannot deconstruct the Holy Writ, but wholly believe upon its authority and doctrine.
Christians, especially those in the western world, want a life of ease.  They want to be wined and dined, literally and spiritually.  Blessings tend to be material or physical things.  The real blessing is the promise of eternal life.  Perhaps our expectations are wrong.  Tozer writes, “Why should believing Christians want everything pre-cooked, pre-digested, sliced and salted, and expect that God must come and help us eat and hold the food to our baby lips, while we pound the table and splash–and we think that is Christianity!”  He goes on to say that this individual is a moral fool.
We are to trust in the Lord and work out our own salvation.  We are to grow in grace.  If we love Him we are to obey His commandments.  We are to be holy as He is holy.  It is not a tip-toe-through-the-tulips life.  Life is to be enjoyed, but only in Christ, not in our opinions of what we say He said.