Eternal Insecurity – Am I In…or Am I Out!

securityI’m often reminded I take myself too seriously. I begin to think I “get it”—I get what God wants me to know about him and his design for life. I get what it means to live life the way I’m designed to live it. But then something happens to remind me I don’t get it, at least not in an enduring and “finished” kind of way.

I read a verse in the Bible that makes perfect sense, and I memorize it so I can meditate on it throughout the day. Then I discover another verse that doesn’t fit all that well with the first verse. I think of these as “tension verses.” Frankly, they seem to be contradictory. (I’ve heard people trying to “explain” these verses in a way that makes me think of a Spiritual Twister kind of game.) I hesitate to memorize the second verse that seems to clash with the other verse I memorized because I might get confused.

Respectfully speaking, God could have been a little more specific about some of the things written in his Book. Sometimes I wondered why he didn’t just write the Book himself, without the help of men and women. We know he could have. We remember the time he scratched the Ten Commandments into some stone slabs with his finger, and when Moses shattered the slabs in a fit of rage, God made him a replacement set. So we know he could have literally written the Bible all by himself, without the help of the men and women he inspired to jot his thoughts and instructions on parchment. But he didn’t.

The tension verses that seem to rile Christ followers (and Christ mimickers and other pseudo-Christians) the most are the tension verses regarding our “security” in our relationship with Christ and our “standing” before God. As a kid, I trembled during the alter calls, terrified that I might have unwittingly committed a sin that exceeded the limits of God’s amazing grace. We sang songs like Are You Ready, but how could I possibly know if I was ready? My “readiness” was entirely dependent, it seemed, on my ability to live a sinless life.

I remember hearing the members of our flock talk about “those Christians” who claimed to be eternally secure. “Oh, those people.” The tone was mocking. I heard adults making fun of anyone who believed they could “sin every day in word, thought and deed” and think they were still going to heaven. But secretly, I envied them—the eternally secure people. I didn’t want to be okay sinning everyday—I hated disappointing God. I just didn’t want to be kicked out of the kingdom plan for having the Winston cigarette jingle go through my head.

Today, I believe I have been invited by the Spirit of God to participate in his plan of eternal life. I believe I’m sealed by the same Spirit. And because his Spirit has quickened my spirit, I am consumed by my desire to get out of his way and allow him to accomplish what he wants to accomplish, both in and through me. I’m learning to surrender my way for his way. Frankly, it’s becoming easier to recognize the times when my selfishness or fear—or laziness—gets in the way of me trusting and obeying the promptings of God’s Spirit in my innermost being.

I believe it’s impossible to be made alive by God’s Spirit and still be okay with living in continual disobedience to his will. If I understand—even in a minuscule way—what it cost my Lord to pay the penalty of my sin, I can no longer be okay making a mockery of his sacrifice for me. (On a personal note, I lived a spiritually miserable life for many years because of the disparity between my love for God and my shameful disobedience. By his grace, I never became “okay” with my foolish choices.)

And I think it’s impossible to be connected to Jesus the Vine and not produce the fruit of his will—in the fullness of time.

And I’m learning that the energy that is expended in lively debates about our “security” in Christ could be better invested serving those who desperately need to know that God is for them…and not against them. Could it be that God allowed the “tension verses” in his Word so we would leave the end results up to him! As for me, I’m confident that he is the One who will complete the work he began within us.

And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” ~ Philippians 1.6

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Eternal Insecurity – Am I In…or Am I Out! « Rod & Rose
  2. Daniel Mckim
    Feb 10, 2013 @ 09:58:57

    Very well written. Praise God.


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