Just Wearing the Shirt
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I have two adult friends who own Princeton University sweatshirts. Now, Al has one because he put in four very challenging years at that university and he graduated from there. And the other day I met a friend, Dave, at the grocery store, and he had his Princeton University sweatshirt on. I said, "I didn't know you went to Princeton?" Well, you know me; I get most of my exercise jumping to conclusions. No, he informed me that he had bought that shirt at a discount store for $12. He said, "Oh, I didn't go to Princeton, I just wear the shirt!"
Now, in Luke 6:46 Jesus is talking to believers, I think, and He says, "Why do you call Me 'Lord, Lord' and do not do the things that I say?" Now, you know, these folks had the right vocabulary; they knew to say, "Lord." In fact they knew to even say it twice, "Lord, Lord." But something had happened to their commitment. It was just words.
My friend, Dave, who had just bought the shirt at the discount store, hadn't really paid the price that goes with identifying with Princeton. Now, when Al, who graduated from there, wears the shirt, it's backed up by years of sacrifice and work. Maybe you're proud to wear Jesus' shirt, but you're not paying the price of living consistently for Him. You've got the shirt; you've not got the life that backs it up.
You know, Alexander the Great was trying a young soldier in his tent who had been accused of cowardice, and he brought this young man in and he said, "Now, young man, what were you accused of?" And the soldier said, "Sir, desertion in battle." And Alexander leaned forward a little bit. He said, "What is your name?" The young man hesitantly said, "Alexander, Sir." And at that point the General leaped to his feet, he grabbed that young man by his collar, and he pulled him up nose to nose and he said, "Young man, either you change your life, or you change your name!"
Now you are carrying, as a Christian, the name of Christ - the holy name of Christ - on your life. Make sure your life backs up the name you wear.
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Matthew 7:21-23. I have to tell you, for me these are some of the most unsettling verses in the Bible. Jesus is speaking: "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Oh, many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophecy in your name, and in your name drive out demons, and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you.'" Wow, those have to be some of the most chilling words in the Bible, "I never knew you."
Now, if we want to go back to my friend who was just wearing the Princeton shirt, we might say spiritually here that these are people who are not only wearing the shirt; they have a complete Christian wardrobe. In fact, it sounds like these may be Christian leaders who are before the Great White Throne Judgment, and they're going before the Lord. Some of them have worked for Him; they've been activists for Him, they've preached, they've done miracles. These aren't just back pew sitters. Yet, Jesus is basically saying here that it isn't the one who says all the right words, "Lord, Lord." It's the one who does His will. And later He will say, "It is the will of my Father in heaven that everyone comes to Him through Me."
It's possible you have Christianity and you've missed Christ; there's never been that moment when you have made Him personally yours, when you personalized what He did on the cross. And every day you wait puts you deeper and deeper into the spiritual danger zone.
Someone listening today, you've got all the right words, you've got all the right beliefs, and maybe you've said it even publicly. But you have never surrendered your heart and your will to Jesus Christ. That reality can be concealed until you see your Lord.
Today tell Him, "Jesus, finally I want to move You from my head to my heart. I don't want to just believe about You, I want to believe in You; I want to commit myself to You. Go to our website. There's so much there to help you. Make sure you belong to Jesus. It's YoursForLife.net.
Is it possible you're wearing the shirt; you're encouraging others to wear the shirt that says Found, but your heart is still lost? I encourage you to put aside just wearing the shirt and let Jesus become part of your heart, not just your spiritual wardrobe.
Distributed by Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, Inc.