“Is Your Christianity Just a Veneer?” June 15

 

Just a Christian Veneer? - How deep is your Christianity? Is it just a Christian veneer or is it who you are? How do you respond to God's dealings with you? Do you pray and read your Bible only when the heat is on and stop once the pressure is off? Have you added a little "Christianity" to your life without truly making Jesus Lord?How deep is your Christianity? Is it just a Christian veneer or is it who you are? How do you respond to God’s dealings with you? Do you pray and read your Bible only when the heat is on and stop once the pressure is off? Have you added a little “Christianity” to your life without truly making Jesus Lord?

 

Today’s Readings:
2 Kings 17 & 18
Ps. 74.1-8
Prov. 18.22-24
Acts 1.1-26

 

Is Your Christianity Just a Veneer?

 

End of Divine Patience

2 Kings 17 & 18:

 

In chapter 17 we see what John MacArthur calls “divine patience” come to an end concerning the Northern Kingdom. Their continued idolatry and disobedience to God’s commands brought the judgment of captivity.

God has not changed (Heb. 13.8). While He is patient and merciful with us, His patience will not on go forever. As a nation and as individuals, if we continue in disobedience to the clear commands of Scripture, if we practice idolatry or if we worship God half-heartedly, we will eventually suffer the consequences of our choices, as well.

 

What is Idolatry?

 

Someone asked me, what is “idolatry”? We usually think of bowing down to some statue or image, but that is not the only form of idolatry. Ezekiel 14.1-8 talks about idolatry of the heart. Anytime we put other things, other people, or other relationships above loving, serving, and pleasing God, we have placed that person or that thing on the throne of our hearts in place of God.

 

We Practice Idolatry When … 

 

We say “I know what God says about pre-marital sex, but I’ll lose my boyfriend if I don’t.”

We refuse to forgive because what they did was just too awful.

We justify sinful anger.

We lie, cheat, or steal because “everybody does it.”

We refuse to submit to or show respect for our husbands because “they might be wrong” or “they don’t deserve it.”

These examples and others demonstrate that we are not sold out to worshiping and trusting God no matter what the circumstances.

 

Christian Veneers

 

lionToo many times we are like the pagan people who were brought in by Assyria to occupy the land they had conquered in the Northern Kingdom. God had sent lions in to attack them, so they called for a priest who knew the “God of the land” (2 Kings 17.27). They continued living life and worshiping as they wanted; they simply added a little “Jewishness” to their rituals.

How like us! We get tired of the “lions” so we turn to God. We make a few concessions to Him. We start coming to church. We may get some new friends and tone down our language, at least around other Christians. We add a little “Christianity” to our lives. But if our hearts have not truly changed, if we have not truly made Jesus Lord, if we don’t change our thinking, if we don’t truly surrender to God … as God, we will soon be living, speaking, and acting the way we used to. Jesus will have been dethroned for some idol.

 

How like us! We get tired of the “lions” so we turn to God. We make a few concessions to Him. We start coming to church. We may get some new friends and tone down our language, at least around other Christians. We add a little “Christianity” to our lives. But if our hearts have not truly changed, if we have not truly made Jesus Lord, if we don’t change our thinking, if we don’t truly surrender to God … as God, we will soon be living, speaking, and acting the way we used to. Jesus will have been dethroned for some idol.

 

 

Today’s Other Readings:

 

Honest Prayers

 

prayer praying hands sq

Psalm 74.1-8:

 

The psalms are full of the prayers and praises of real people and a great place to go when we are hurting and don’t know how to pray. Here the psalmist is praying for God’s help and deliverance from his trials.

 


A Good Thing

Proverbs 18.22-24:

 

Verse 18 says, “He who finds a wife finds a good thing …”

Does that verse describe you, ladies? Can your husband see God’s blessings through your life and ministry to him? Husbands, do you see your wives as “a good thing”? We all need to view the blessings and circumstances of our lives as coming from the hand of a loving God. Do you?

 

Infallible Proofs

Acts 1.1-26:

 

As we start another New Testament book, we are reminded that Jesus …

“… presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (v. 3).

Then He left their testimonies for us to read. Our faith is not based on wishful thinking. It is based on the infallible, inerrant Word of God, including the testimonies recorded in Scripture.

 

journalWhat about You? Questions to Ponder or Journal:

How deep is your Christianity? Is it just a veneer or is it who you are?

How do you respond to God’s dealings with you? Do you pray and read your Bible when the heat is on, only to stop once the pressure is off? Do you seek God’s wisdom or worldly wisdom when things aren’t going well? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Blessings,
Donna


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10 thoughts on ““Is Your Christianity Just a Veneer?” June 15

  1. Wow! Some your examples of idolatry, I never thought of them as idolatry before. But I suppose when you continue put your will above that of God’s you make yourself Lord. I’ve done this far too often. So thankful for the opportunity to confess and receive His grace.

  2. So many thoughts rushed into my mind as I read your post. My fear is that so many of us (meaning our generation) have lived with veneer Christianity that our children and grandchildren are rejecting what they see because it’s not the real thing.

    The other thought is that when I was teaching Practice of Godliness, we spent a lot of time talking about the traits the book discusses and reminding ourselves that behavior can be like wall paper (or veneer!) — hiding a lot of cracks and problems that need to be addressed.

    I always appreciate your wisdom, Donna.

    • I think you’re all too right, Michele. Not that I have it all together now (I wish! 🙁 ), but I realize, so profoundly, how true that was early in our walk with God. We didn’t have a clue about heart issues and motives for doing what we do. It was too much about “keeping the rules.” I know it affected our children. Thanks for adding to this discussion. It’s so important in our lives and for our children.

  3. Donna, great post. And I love your thoughts on idols. As a pastor’s wife, I know first hand how hard it is to grasp the concept…in my own Christian walk and to explain it to others. Many times the “other” god is “me.” I want my way, my plans, no matter what the Bible says. Thank you for this enlighting post. Blessings. Visiting from Fresh Market Friday link up. 🙂

    • Karen, you’re so right. Often the other god is me, too. It’s even easy to slip into justifying it because I’m right, I deserve it, etc. I’m so glad you stopped by today. Have a great week-end!

  4. It is so important, so desired by God, that we grow in our faith. The Psalms are so helpful in guiding us to a deeper faith. If we have our roots deep in God’s word we can sthave an impact on others.

  5. Thank you so much for sharing wisdom and truth consistently on your blog.

    Wow, if only we would stop to ponder the idols in our hearts. And not just once in awhile but FREQUENTLY!! Reminds me of God saying obedience is better than sacrifice. Doing what God says even when it doesn’t make sense or even when it makes us feel uncomfortable is SO important.

    Thanks for the encouragement to continually seek the Lord. Always a pleasure to read your posts that you link up at Literacy Musing Mondays!

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