Isn’t 95% Enough?

cac73-mh900054928“We’re such phonies sometimes.”

That comment certainly caught my attention. I was sitting around visiting with some of the members of my church and we were discussing the Bible. But by the time this comment was made, all eyes were on the lady who said it.

Now she wasn’t referring to anyone specific. She wasn’t even referring to our church. She was referring to Christians as a whole. But I knew that what she said applied to me. My thoughts and actions, unfortunately, do not always demonstrate the things I profess to believe.

Another statement that stuck with me from that conversation is this, “We are either fully committed to Christ, or we are fully committed to the world.” That’s exactly right. Christians, we cannot be 95% committed to Christ and think that we’re doing well.

Jesus says, “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon” (Luke 16:13).

We can’t serve Jesus and the world. We’ll end up picking one or the other. And too often people who profess to belong to Christ choose to serve the latter.

We need to make up our minds, because “a double minded man is unstable in all his ways” (James 1:8). There’s no trick to this; it’s just a matter of diligently following through with what we know we are supposed to be doing, with the aid of the Holy Spirit.

I like the way that A. Ray Stanford says it in his Handbook of Personal Evangelism (which is available from this site as a free download):

“The Bible teaches that the old nature doesn’t change, but it can be controlled by the power of the Holy Spirit who indwells all believers. Whether the new nature or the old nature will control the individual depends entirely upon the person’s decision of which nature he will nurture and allow to rule. Galatians 5:16, ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.’ The Greek meaning of the word ‘walk’ is to be ‘responsive, controlled, and guided.’ In other words, be responsive to the Spirit, controlled by the Spirit, and guided by the Spirit, and you will not be controlled by the flesh. The desires of the flesh will still be present, but you will not be controlled by them.”

As believers, we (myself included) need to fill our lives with the things of the Spirit and serve Christ, instead of instinctively filling our lives with the things of the flesh and serving the world.