Charles Spurgeon wrote “we can’t disciple people that aren’t 100% converted.” That is so true and have learned this the hard way. I spent hours instructing, praying even fasting only to recognize they weren’t 100% into the life of Christ. There was no serious commitment to Jesus. They lived chaotic and out of control lives, depressed and abused and thought their present life with Christ was all there was. They sometimes had the form of godliness but denying it’s power.
Their condition might look like this:
There is no clear understanding about the Redeemer and what was bought for them on the Cross. They know Jesus is the Savior but the how Jesus is a Savior is a mystery. They don’t understand the necessity of the death of Jesus.
They are unclear about the rebirth. The old man is dead. They don’t understand the power and freedom that comes with the rebirth. They haven’t quite grasped the fact Jesus accomplished it all for them. They don’t have to keep making sacrifices. Their sins are washed clean, and thrown in the sea of forgetfulness. They talk about Christ as the Savior but truly experiencing the death and life of Jesus in themselves is missing. They have yet to really grasp the adoption in God’s family.
They don’t see clearly their heart is not fully engaged. They have given over partial surrender. They don’t get joy out of the life with Christ. They still find joy and happiness outside of Christ. Holiness is just a bunch of rules.
Their will is divided. They don’t understand why some things in their life has to stop and why somethings in their life must start. Jesus is the Savior, yes but is He their King? They argue about the points of right and wrong, look for loopholes, and try to justify their unwillingness to surrender.
Sometimes the responsibility of this condition lies on the shoulder of the evangelist, in their zeal to get results.
Sometimes the cause is the people themselves. These are some of the causes I have seen.
1- They object to clear cut definitions. They dislike clarity or certanity. They are ambigious themselves. They object to clarity because of the demands His truth puts on them. A comfortable religion is a vague religion, an uncertain religion cluttered up with forms and rituals. There is nothing more uncomfortable as clear cut Biblical truths that demand decisions. Truths that bring people to crossroads in their lives, where they will have to chose the His way, His truth and His life or their way which normally cost nothing. Vague people will say “you are being legalistic and to rigid.”
2- They very often do not accept the teaching and authority of Scriptures. They want to only believe the Scriptures they choose. They mix their own ideas with the Scriptures and will even make a case for justifying their unbiblical lifestyle. They don’t have a vital need for the Word of God. They see no value in seeking His Word.
3 – They are not interested in Kingdom of Heaven principles. They like the stories in the Bible but not interested in the foundational principles they imply. They like Jesus but don’t like He is the only truth, and the only life. His solid truths hurt and focus us. They will disturb us and insist on decisions. His Word will examine us and cause us to examine ourselves.
There are some truths that man has misused to control and manipulate others. They have forced opinions on others under the guise of doctrine. It is important in this day and age to look in the Scriptures for doctrines Jesus set up! When people stand up for the truth Jesus brought they will face opposition, fierce opposition even in the church sanctuary.
His truths must be defined and safe guarded.
4 – Many people don’t take the Scriptures in the right order. For instance, regeneration doesn’t come before atonement. A new life in Christ doesn’t come before repentance, recognizing and receiving the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. Sanctification doesn’t come before justification. They want to transform their lives before renewing their minds. I normally find these people unteachable, self protectors and worse victims of their own spiritual confusion.
Q4U: Can you add to the list? What do you think are some remedies?