Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christian Mythology: 4. Judgment – Myth: Christians don’t have to face judgment

Oops. Sorry I went out of order. I accidentally deleted this entry a few days ago.

Judgment happens all the time in God’s kingdom. Most of it is criticism. The problem is we don’t know how to properly wield discernment. Nobody likes to get criticized. We try to soften the blow by delivering “constructive” criticism. I don’t know about you, but this kind hurts too. I also know that when the Holy Spirit judges me, this hurts more than anything. We need to get used to the pain when it comes from God.

Like dying to self daily (or as often as necessary), we also persevere under the judgment of God. These things are for our good and His glory. They are utterly good and necessary for the Christian. Yet they can be either impossible or simple to do.

If the Spirit is prompting you about some sin in your life then the following things are true:

The sin is present and therefore so are its consequences.
The old man of the flesh is alive.
The Holy Spirit is quenched and grieved.
The judgment of God or the mercy of God is imminent. We don’t get to pick.

Regardless, the action required on our part remains the same. We need mercy. We deserve judgment. To obtain mercy and avoid judgment quickly we must repent.
This is impossible as long as we don’t feel like it. That’s usually what happens to me. I just don’t feel like it. The consequences of judgment aren’t too bad (yet) so I can put up with it for a while. I’m perfectly satisfied to wrestle with flesh and blood (my own) instead of waging warfare in the heavenlies. Satan is quite happy for me to stay this way. It keeps me out of his way.

Some Christians say God does not judge His children at all. I don’t want a Father like that. I want a Daddy Who loves me and does what is necessary on His part to bring me back into loving fellowship with Him – even if it hurts.

It is simple to get back to that state when the flesh and blood wrestling stops and we humble ourselves before God in repentance and forsaking of sin. Immediately we do, the judgment stops, the prompting of the Holy Spirit stops, the pain stops, and the joy begins anew.

This is the message we need to give one another when God provides discernment about a brother or sister who is in sin. He does not give discernment so we may criticize, give opinions, or provide solutions. He does it so we may intercede by bringing the blood of Jesus upon the situation. Let the pressure of God’s Spirit increase so that sin may decrease (to zero!).

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