3. Hypocritical Christians
One easy way to deter a person from Christ is to live a life of hypocrisy. If we claim to know God, yet operate out of our flesh in most scenarios, this should be a concern for us. Galatians 5:13-26 gives a clear picture of what walking by the Spirit and walking by the flesh looks like.
We are always called to walk by the Spirit’s leading. When we fail to do so, we will “act holy” on Sundays but have little concern for our Christian walk on the other days. Christians who are set apart and walk in God’s love can naturally draw non-believers into the faith. Instead, non-believers often see a mirror image of themselves when they see Christians. If we speak vulgarly, accept immoral ideas, or treat people poorly, how can we expect people to want the God we claim to serve?
When Christians choose to live a life that picks and chooses what parts of the Word are applicable to them, we tell the world around us that we don’t take the Word seriously. Thus, even if we pique someone’s interest in Christ, we may do more damage when they start to imitate a version of Christianity that does not reflect God’s truth. If we want to be effective witnesses, we must ask the Lord to show us anything that does not align with His Word and make active steps to change it.
“I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:17)
2. Division in the Church
Within America alone, there are believed to be over 200 denominations of Christianity. These denominations vary over things such as disagreements over the use of instruments in the church, how women should dress, the style of preaching, what a person has to do to be saved, and more. With so many different beliefs and values within a local church, it can be very confusing to the non-believer to know what exactly Christians stand for and against. Instead of being a united front against the enemy and winning souls, within the Christian community there are debates, back-biting, and even dissociation amongst some denominations.
Racial divides, political differences, and even the response to COVID-19, only highlight the underlying disunity within the body of Christ. In doing so, Christianity becomes a house divided. Even more so, churches are no longer centered around God, they are focused on our human interpretations of specific passages. This is the opposite of how God would desire us to function as the Body of Christ. Instead, Christians (regardless of their denomination) should come together with one purpose, fulfilling the Great Commission.
“There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.” (Ephesians 4:4-6)
Overall, as Christians, it is our primary responsibility to be ambassadors for Christ. How we speak, how we interact with each other, and how we live our lives are living testimonies for God’s goodness. May we seek to share His Word with anyone willing to listen, and pray that the Lord reveal anything that may be hindering our ability to share the gospel.
“Our faith becomes stronger as we express it; a growing faith is a sharing faith.” — Billy Graham
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