Let's face it, as many people deny that their praise to God is nothing more
than lip service, it is a far too common problem. There are exceptions, but
for the most part, people are guilty of this.
There is a passage in the book of Isaiah that addresses this common problem today. In Isaiah 29:13, we read: *Then the Lord said, because this people draw near with their words and honor Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me, and their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote*. In the context of this passage, God is reprimanding the children of Israel for leaving God. Not only did they leave God, they tried to dismiss God as nothing more than another individual.
The problem most people have today is they pay God lip service, but their hearts are far from God. Many in our society have tried to remove any and all reference to God. They have taken God out of our schools and our courtrooms. They have tried to suppress any teaching from God, and they have done nothing more than mock God and make fun of true believers. Sure there are bad apples in every bunch, but the media of this world takes these bad apples and portrays them as common in the churches.
So many people treat the Bible as obsolete and useless. And usually this comes not from atheists, but from so-called church leaders. Why? It is because they want to practice what is condemned in the Bible.
Why do we sing songs like *Joy To The World* and *Oh Holy Night* and ignore the message of these songs? Why do we give gifts and contribute to charities only in December? Is it not because we get caught up in this whole thing? Is this not the way of the world?
It seems like the world loves the baby Jesus, but can*t stand that same baby that grew up and preached God*s message to mankind. They like baby Jesus because He did not preach on what is necessary to go to heaven. He did not preach that those who continue in sin will not see heaven. The baby Jesus is portrayed as the greatest of gifts from God. And He is the greatest gift, but the whole gift was given and not just the infant. This Jesus grew up in stature and mighty in the spirit of God, because He was God.
A lot of people act religious around Christmas time, but behave very worldly the rest of the time. If that is not lip service, then what is it?
If people are going to sing *glory to God in the highest*, they had better start serving God with their whole heart. *Be not deceived, God is not mocked** (Galatians 6:8) God knows if you are giving Him lip service. Because unlike any other human, God can read the heart and mind of each person (Jeremiah 17:10).
God does not want one time a year people that claim Him only then. God wants full time Christians doing God*s will, and keeping His commandments. Those who just practice a little religion every now and then are no different than those who never do anything to serve God or be pleasing to Him.
Reflect upon your life, and see that something is missing. Serve the Lord God with your whole heart all the time. You do this by obeying His will and keeping His commandments. And yes, you need to study the Bible to find out what the commandments are that are vitally important to your soul*s eternal destiny.
Matthew 7:21 is very appropriate here: *Not everyone who says to Me Lord, Lord; shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he that does the will of my Father in heaven*
God is not willing that any be lost and perish, but wants all men to come to accept His grace. God asks you to believe on the Christ the son of God with your heart (Acts 16:31), and repent of your sins by turning away from sin and obeying God all the time (Acts 2:38). God asks you to confess your allegiance to the Christ initially and always(Matthew 10:32). God commands you be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 22:16) This is the only way your sins will be taken away from your life. And once your Christian journey begins, you should remain faithful the rest of your life. (Revelation 2:10)
We at Eastside church of Christ in Ranger are trying our very best to be the type of Christians God is pleased with. We offer an invitation to all to come and learn how to serve God the way God wants to be served. Come join us.
We meet at the corner of Strawn Rd and Young St in Ranger. On Sunday at 9:45am for bible class and 10:45am for worship; Sunday evening at 5:00pm for worship and Wednesday evening at 7:00 for Bible study.
By Carey Scott
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