For example, in James 1:27 we read, “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction.” How many of us have visited an orphan or widow today? This week? This month? This year? This life?
Or how about this one in 1 John 3:17, “But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?” Get your check book out and go through all the times you have financially supported the poor Church in India, North Korea, China, or Africa. Now look at how many times you go out to eat.
How about words that come right from Jesus' mouth, such as this one on marriage found in Matthew 19:6, “What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” Oh wait, I forgot, that doesn't apply to you if you are not happy, right?
Currently, a crowd favorite is homosexuality. The Bible explicitly lists this as a sin. (Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Romans 1:26-28, 1 Timothy 1:8-11). Not to mention the implicit teaching of God's original design that flows through the entire Bible of husband and wife and the purpose of marriage in God's redemptive history as being a living display of Christ's union with the Church. So let us be honest about the question, it is not whether the Bible says it, for it clearly does. The real question is do you submit to it.
And really, this is the question for all of the times when the Bible cuts us open and we see inconsistencies in our lives. The question is will we submit to God or not? The sad part is that a lot of people will openly and cavalierly not submit, yet they will go to their grave proclaiming that they are a Christian.
But...once again lets look at the Book, what does it say? 1 John 1:6 says, “If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.” The bottom line is that if we continuously rebel against God, then our actions speak louder than our words, and they tell the world that we are liars. For Jesus is not our Lord if we lord over Him.
The basic concept of being a Christian is following Jesus. If He says do this, we do it. If He says don't do this, we don't do it. It is not complicated. The complication comes when we attempt to rationalize away what is clear as a bell.
So what is the point to this post? Is it to pick a fight? No, my goal is the same as John's goal who writes in 1 John 2:1, “I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin.” My hope is that the next time you read the the Bible you do not rationalize away what you read, but you pray that God would give you a heart that loves Him, for as Jesus tells us, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. (John 14:23).