Christianity is not About Learning to Obey Some Rules

A Christianity that does not have as its primary focus the deepening of passion for God is a false Christianity, no matter how zealously it seeks conversions or how forcefully it advocates righteous behavior. Being converted to Jesus is not just about learning to obey some rules.  Being converted to Jesus is learning to so adore God that we would gladly renounce everything we have to follow Him.

– Greear, J.D.; Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary; B&H Publishing Group; Nashville, TN; Copyright 2011; Kindle Edition; page 10

Grace and Holiness – Its Not Either/Or but Both/And

It is not news to most Christians that the gospel of God’s grace is good news and that we also need to grow in our holiness.  The challenge is putting these two truths together in a biblical way.  Some have perhaps so emphasized God’s grace that people lose sight of striving toward the goal of holiness, while others put so much stress on the need for holiness that, for struggling sinners, Christianity seems hardly to be good news anymore.

– Duguid, Barbara; Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in our Weakness; P&R Publishing; Philippsburg, NJ; copyright 2013; Page 13

Get ‘er Done!

From a human standpoint, this is precisely why many outside the church reject Christianity and why so many inside the church conk out: they’re just not good enough to “get’er done” over the long haul.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 2167

Believe It or Not, Christianity is Not About Good People Getting Better…

Believe it or not, Christianity is not about good people getting better.  If anything, it is good news for bad people coping with their failure to be good.  The heart of the Christian faith is Good news, not good advice, good technique, or good behavior.  Too many people have walked away from the church, not because they’re walking away from Jesus, but because the church has walked away from Jesus.

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 56

It is Not Our Sacrifice(s) That Secured Our Eternal Future!

The unintended consequence of this push, however, is that if we’re not careful, we can give people the impression that Christianity is first and foremost about the sacrifice we make for Jesus rather than the sacrifice Jesus made for us; our performance for him rather than his performance for us; our obedience for him rather than his obedience for us.  The hub of Christianity is not “do something for Jesus.”  The hub of Christianity is “Jesus has done everything for you.”

– Tchividian, Tullian; One Way Love: Inexaustible Grace for an Exhausted World; David Cook Publishers; copyright 2013; Kindle Edition; Location 55-56

Christianity Is Not First and Foremost About Us, Our Behavior and Obedience

Christianity is not first and foremost about our behavior, our obedience, our response, and our daily victory over sin.  It is first and foremost about Jesus!  It is about His person; His substitutionary work; His incarnation, life, death resurrection, ascension and promised return.  We are justified – and sanctified – by grace alone through faith alone in the finished work of Christ alone.

– Tchividjian, Tullian; Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free; David C Cook Publishers, Copyright 2013, Kindle Edition, page 68

Contrary to Popular Belief, Christianity Is Not About Good People Getting Better

Contrary to popular belief, Christianity is not about good people getting better.  If anything, it is about bad people coping with their failures to be good.  That is to say, Christianity concerns the gospel, which is nothing more or less than the good news that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (I Timothy 1:15) “[Christ] was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification” (Romans 4:25).  The gospel is a proclamation that always addresses sinners and sufferers directly (i.e., you and me).

– Tchividjian, Tullian; Glorious Ruin: How Suffering Sets You Free; David C Cook Publishers, Copyright 2013, Kindle Edition, page 64

Christianity is a Religion of Works

Christianity is also a religion of works just not our own works. Only by the work of Jesus Christ are we saved. Only through faith in the sinless life, substitutionary death, and bodily resurrection can anyone be saved. Jesus saves us, which then results in our good works what Jesus also often refers to as the “fruit” of his already accomplished work of salvation and us.  This is a vastly different way of looking at the world than any other religion. Our works don’t justify us. Rather our works are an act of worship to a God who has already made us new.

– Driscoll, Mark; Who Do You Think You Are? Finding Your True Identity in ChristThomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, copyright 2013; Page 76

It Is Time Once Again to Love God With Our Minds

The greatest  threat to Christianity is never vigorous intellectual criticism but a creeping senility that transform truths into feelings, public claims into private experiences, and facts into mere values.  Christianity is either true or false, ut it is not irrational.  If its claims are not objectively true, then they are not subjectively useful.  If our only reason for believing Jesus is alive is that “he lives within my heart,” then, as Paul said, “our preaching is in vain and your faith in in vain.”  “We are even found to be misrepresenting God because we testified about God that he raised Christ…And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins…. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied” (I Corinthians 15:14-19).  We must recover our distinctively biblical commitment to rigorous, inquisitive, and persuasive thinking before there can be a genuine renewal of Christian conviction, faith, repentance and discipleship.  It is time once  again to love God with our minds.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 262