Bible Lesson 50

Practical Christian Living part II
Romans 8:13

In our last lesson, we began to look at how a true Christian should live. Let me clarify the term “true Christian”. I do not believe there is any other kind of Christian. You, who have followed my lessons from the Inspired Word of God, the Bible, know that there are only two kinds of people in our world today and that is true Christians and lost people who are going to spend eternity in hell unless the Lord brings them to a knowledge of the truth. There is not one person who is 50% or 75% or even 99% saved because you are a 100% Christian or you are a lost person, under the wrath of God.

We have to clarify what we mean because there have been so many people who have been misled by the preaching of those who have an agenda other than obedience to God’s Word. This may surprise you, it did me; but on a program of approximately 7 preachers the other day, one of them stated that a recent poll of preachers found that a large percent of the preachers surveyed were compromised by pornography.

That is hard to believe but we all know that we have many preachers today that are not called of God to preach. These are men who hold degrees from some prestigious seminaries, but they don’t have the call of God on their lives so they are easily compromised. I don’t know if you have ever noticed it, but compromise is not a biblical word.

Perhaps that is because God did not mean for preachers to compromise. In essence, compromise is a political word and means that two beliefs are brought together by each of the parties moving back from what they truly believe. Now, God never gives one that He has called out of the World, whether to preach or just to live and witness, to compromise on what God has inspired in His Word the Bible.

Tolerance and compromise are words that mean pretty much the same thing; because to tolerate means to allow or put up with something that we are not in complete agreement with. Our churches have become noted for their compromise and their tolerance of things that God has said is an abomination to Him.

For instance abortion, divorce, homosexuality, child abuse, and a vast array of other sins that we tolerate as we look the other way and never say a word or take a stand on the Word and Will of God. We have become compromisers extraordinary, and we have allowed it in our pulpits. That’s the reason that we have preachers who will privately tell you that they don’t preach against abortion because there are women in his congregation that have had abortions or know some who do.

Preachers do not preach against homosexuality much because they never know but what some mother has a son or daughter who practices that abominable lifestyle. Men who are truly called to preach are not afraid to preach whatever God has said without apology. A preacher who is concerned about anybody?s feeling when he preaches the Word of God has compromised himself with sin, and now instead of being part of God’s solution, he has become part of the devil?s program.

God gave man the revelation of Himself in the form of the Bible; and the reason that God gave that to us is so we can preach it without hesitation, knowing that it will and must hurt some sinner?s feelings. We know that people like that, are compromisers, and they lead a compromising people. The trouble is that any compromise is too much for one compromise leads to another and then another and soon you have what we find in so many of the institutional churches of our day?.churches that have taken it on themselves to lay aside the Bible and begin to “grow” churches in whatever flavor they want them to be. Some of these grow to be mega-churches and you can style them as holding cells for hell; because there is only one way to heaven and that is God’s way!

What does it matter that many of our preachers are not preaching the full gospel of God? It matters in that it takes all of the truth to be true, and if they leave out any of the truth, then they are preaching a false gospel and that won’t get people saved. So many churches today are supposedly saving, people but there is never the need for conversion stressed and a demand for a changed life. Oh, I know that we have become so “in control” of God and his church, that we think that our felt needs and desires carry enough weight to over-ride whatever God has said in His Bible. That is such a heresy, that I won’t honor it by even dealing with it. Anybody with half a wit and one eye would know better than that.

Hear me well now, the salvation that makes you a child of God always comes to those who have come to the absolute end of self. They have tried every way they know how to be the god of their lives and they have found that they are not sufficient. They realize that their lives are nothing and they are going nowhere but down, so they are ready to have God take over their lives. Now “If” God is going to save them at all, He will quicken them and bring them back to Spiritual life (Ephesians 2:1). Then God does all the rest that comes in true salvation, He allows that person to repent and ask God to save him. Then God grants faith to that person and regenerates him, justifies him, and grants him the Holy Spirit.

All of salvation is of God, so those who are truly saved will do what pleases God, and compromise never pleases God. The Holy Spirit that indwells every truly saved person never compromises the things of God; but the flesh is quick to compromise at almost any point, including how people are saved. Our scripture verse for this lesson is from the book of Romans chapter eight and verse 13, and that scripture tells us, For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. What does it mean to mortify the deeds of the body?

Well, the Greek word that is translated there speaks of murder; and murder is premeditated. So we, as true Christians, must consciously plan and murder the deed of the body, and compromise is one of the first things that the Spirit will lead us to murder. How many of us have sat down and laid out a scheme or a plan to mortify, the deeds of the flesh and to put on Jesus Christ?

Ephesians chapter 4 and verses 21-24, tells us If so be that ye have heard Him, and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation (life), the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the Spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness?. That is clear enough for any person to understand, God saves a person and that person’s mind is renewed and his mind is like the mind of Christ, so in these verses, the Apostle Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, tells us that in our minds we put off the old man, just as we would put off a dirty shirt, and put on that new man that is created in every true Salvation.

It would help you understand this kind of thing if you would go back and read Ephesians 2:1-10; 2nd Corinthians 5:17; and Galatians 2:20. You see, if we understand what God does in Salvation, we have to know that God creates in us a willing mind to do all that He would have us do (Philippians 2:13). The problem is with how we have been preached to concerning the truth. We do not deserve any mercy from God; what we deserve are death and hell and until you come to the point that you understand that in your heart of hearts, you will never be saved. Christ came to die, to save sinners; so if you are self-righteous, you will have to stand in the judgment without that perfect advocate, Jesus Christ. Believe me, you do not want to do that; because all who go to that judgment seat where Christ is not their advocate, is destined for eternal torments in hell.

It does not matter if the person who gets that God Call to salvation is a drug dealer of the worst kind or if it is a sweet mother of 5 children, who have worked hard all of her life and has spent herself in caring for those children, what matters is what we have done with that gift of eternal life that Jesus bought for those who would obey Him (Hebrews 5:8-9). How can we know what God has told us about that gift of life that He has for those who obey Him? We have to study the Word of God, the Bible, and come to an understanding of what it teaches.

That does not mean reading the Bible in a year, or a cursory reading of the Bible, it means that we make up our minds that we want to hear from God and so we begin to read and study the Bible as we believe it is the Word of God directly from God. We have been led astray by men and women who themselves do not understand the Bible, who have no organized theology. They have taught us that church is just another “activity” that we do as a group. We have become part of the compromising church, and so that we can know that God does not sanction compromisers, let’s look for a moment at the church at Pergamos. We find that church in the book of Revelation, chapter 2, beginning at verse 12 and running through verse 17.

Pergamos was the capital of the Roman province of Asia Minor and was the home of many pagan cults. That church there in Pergamos would be a good reflection of the visible church of our day. It had allowed into its congregation people who are called in the scriptures, Balaamites, and Nicolaitans. Balaam compromised his prophetic office for the Kings of Moab’s money and attempted to curse the Hebrew nation. God intervened but Balaam did manage to cause the men of Israel to intermarry with the pagan women. That means that the men of Israel compromised themselves for the favor of those women. The Nicolaitans were also compromisers that, much like many of our church members today like to say that they are Christians but they want to always walk the edge with God as they commit their favorite sins.

Both of these groups are people who take a little of the Truth and then override it with compromise. Like so many in our churches today, we say we believe the biblical doctrines; but we think God won’t mind if we sin just a little and we make all kinds of excuses for our precious sin. Well, if you have looked at the scriptures in Revelation chapter 2:12-17, you find that God does not accept that kind of thing. God calls these compromisers to repentance in verse 16, and He warns them that unless they do repent that He will come to them quickly and fight against them with the sword of His mouth. That means that God was going to judge this compromising church with all of the terror that righteous judgment carries with it.

What do you think would cause a person living today, in a world where the Bible is the best selling book in the world, to want to associate him or herself with some church group and then set himself against God to justify some sin in his life. Does that make sense to you? Not too many decades ago, the church was aware and awake and preached the doctrines of Grace which lifts God in the sight of men; and because the communities around that church were faithful in its service to God, people were afraid to play church with God. All of that is past and today we have weak churches that have departed from the very basic doctrines and have become compromisers. In many churches today, compromising is expected of those who would be members.

There are not very many Daniels around in our day. You remember Daniel, who was taken as a captive to Babylon as a young man. The Babylonians were shrewd, and since they would have to live with the captives that they brought back from Israel, they wanted to reorientate them into the Babylonian way. First, they changed their names and they renamed Daniel, Belteshazzar, and then they reeducated him, and then finally they would change his diet to one that suited the Babylonians. Now, that doesn’t sound too radical to most of us; but to Daniel, who was a worshiper of God, He would not compromise even in these seemingly slight changes. Daniel would have been programmed by these slight changes to accept the worship of the idol if he had bowed to these small changes in his identity. That is why it is so critical that we, who say that we worship the true God, Jehovah, do not begin to move one way or another from the clear teaching of the Bible.

What about us in our church affiliations today? What about you, do you serve in a church that is free-wheeling and cares more for the desires or felt needs of its members than it does about obedience to God? So many today are so biblically illiterate that we may belong to a church that is especially compromising, and we don’t even know it. That’s what happens when the church lets down the bar that God erected for church membership. Everyone should be welcome in the church, as long as they act with respect; but not everyone should be welcomed as a member of the church. The Church belongs to Jesus Christ and it takes the blood of Christ on the heart, mind, and soul of every person who becomes a member. The church of our day has adopted the wrong standard for accepting people for church membership.

We look at people who have a good standing in the community, perhaps a good job and a family life that looks on an even keel and we say, they will be good for the church so we grant them membership. These may be good people when we judge them by others in the community, but they in many cases are not saved, people. Compromisers are people who have never been converted. They have adopted a religion that is neither hot nor cold and they are a distraction to those who are weak in their beliefs. Our scripture for this lesson has been taken from Romans chapter 8 and verse 13, which should cause us to see that God will not allow compromise from His creatures.

That verse says, if you live according to the flesh, you shall die; but if by the Spirit you do mortify or put to death the deeds of the body, you shall live. That speaks of conversion and conversion is a done deal, you are converted by the Spirit of God at the moment of His sealing you in salvation; and as you learn what God would have you to do, you begin to do it as you learn. Also as you learn what God does not want you to do, you immediately stop it. You cannot do it in the power of the flesh, but you cannot fail to do it in the power of the Holy Spirit. The true Christian will never knowingly compromise with evil or evildoers. Conversion is one of the bench-marks of Salvation?.so make sure that you are not a compromiser; but rather one who knows the truth and stands against any attempt to weaken or change it.

Until next time,

may God bless and keep you

This is Bro. Bob