Complacency

“For simpletons turn away from me—to death. Fools are destroyed by their own complacency. But all who listen to me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm.” (Proverbs 1:32, 33 NLT)

Complacency: a feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, or the like; self-satisfaction or smug satisfaction with an existing situation, condition, etc.

The Bible says fools are destroyed by their own complacency, but that those that listen to the Word of God will live in peace. The Lord warns that eventually people who seem to care less will suddenly begin to care. (Isaiah 32:10)

The longer The Lord waits, the more complacent people get. And the more complacent people get, the uglier the world becomes. Many have grown secure in the fact that The Lord’s return has not yet come. Many are completely satisfied with their stand that there is no God, or if there is – it’s not Jesus.

But Like I tell my children. If you persist to make the wrong choice, there will be a consequence. It might not happen right away, but it will happen eventually. In some cases people may not fully see the consequence of their denial of Christ and there battle against the One True God until the day that their eternal destination is realized. And eternity is a really long time to live with the consequence of the wrong choice.

The Lord has spoke of his coming judgement throughout history, and every day Christ’s return draws nearer. So we can either choose to live complacently, satisfied with our existing condition, falsely secure in the fact that when we awoke this morning – the world was still spinning. Or we can realize that there’s only one Word that has stood true throughout time. That there is only one way to eternal salvation that really makes sense. That battling against the Almighty God and his plan for our redemption is a losing battle with eternal consequences.

I choose Jesus!

“God overlooked people’s ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30, 31 NLT)

The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment. Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, (2 Peter

But God says to the wicked: “Why bother reciting my decrees and pretending to obey my covenant? For you refuse my discipline and treat my words like trash. When you see thieves, you approve of them, and you spend your time with adulterers. Your mouth is filled with wickedness, and your tongue is full of lies. You sit around and slander your brother— your own mother’s son. While you did all this, I remained silent, and you thought I didn’t care. But now I will rebuke you, listing all my charges against you. (Psalms 50:16-21 NLT)

For they brag about their evil desires; they praise the greedy and curse the Lord. The wicked are too proud to seek God. They seem to think that God is dead. Yet they succeed in everything they do. They do not see your punishment awaiting them. They sneer at all their enemies. They think, “Nothing bad will ever happen to us! We will be free of trouble forever!” (Psalms 10:3-6 NLT)

I also noticed that under the sun there is evil in the courtroom. Yes, even the courts of law are corrupt! I said to myself, “In due season God will judge everyone, both good and bad, for all their deeds.” (Ecclesiastes 3:16, 17 NLT)

“I will search with lanterns in Jerusalem’s darkest corners to punish those who sit complacent in their sins. They think the Lord will do nothing to them, either good or bad. (Zephaniah 1:12 NLT)

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Stagnant

“I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!” (Revelation 3:15, 16 NLT)

I don’t want to be lukewarm. Jesus clearly doesn’t want me to be lukewarm. The Message translation uses the words “stale” and “stagnant”. I definitely don’t want my relationship with Jesus to be defined by either of those words. I want it to be exactly the opposite – fresh, new and moving.

So what does that look like? How do I keep my Christian life fresh, new and moving? First and foremost, I need to stay connected to the vine!

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.”(John 15:4 NLT)

I must also read the Bible…daily! God provided clear instructions throughout his Word. Through his Holy Spirit he inspired those he chose to tell his story and to instruct his children. He’s got some instructions for me to keep me from becoming stagnant. Here are a few:

Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. (Colossians 3:2 NLT) — There is so much going on in our lives these days. I need to make a conscious effort to focus on the things that really matter.

So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you… Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him. (Colossians 3:5, 10 NLT) — All of the junk that was in my life before I knew Jesus is exactly what Satan will use to try to make me stagnant again. But that junk is gone, replaced with the new life Jesus gave me. I need to let it be!

Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. (Colossians 3:23 NLT) — The way I go about my day-to-day work will become my attitude.

Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. (Colossians 4:2 NLT) — Regular conversation with my Heavenly Father is something I should never let fall away.

Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone. (Colossians 4:5, 6 NLT) — The people in my life are not here by chance.

Carefully determine what pleases the Lord. (Ephesians 5:10 NLT) -and- Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. (Ephesians 5:17 NLT) — Like the once popular acronym… WWJD, I need to make my choices carefully.

…singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. (Ephesians 5:19 NLT) — Worship! Collectively and alone, I need to keep my heart singing for my amazing Savior.

For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ… (Philippians 1:20 NLT) — I will not hide who I am in Christ. It’s a heritage I am proud to proclaim.

Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. (Philippians 2:3, 4 NLT) — Even though the world today says “look out for number one”, Jesus wants me to be looking out for others. And even though the world today says “look at me”, I need to be saying “Look at Jesus!”

Do everything without complaining and arguing, (Philippians 2:14 NLT) — No whining. No pity parties. No petty disagreements over things that don’t have eternal significance.

Whatever happens, my dear brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord. (Philippians 3:1 NLT) — And I must always remember, the victory has already been won and God is in control! And rejoicing in everything will keep me from becoming stagnant and stale!

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Ephesians 2:1-6 MSG – It wasn’t so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn’t know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the same boat. It’s a wonder God didn’t lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah.

What if you’re wrong?

“Do you still want to argue with the Almighty? You are God’s critic, but do you have the answers?” (Job 40:2 NLT)

It is sad and scary how as time passes mankind moves further and further from God. They use their God given gifts of wisdom and creativity to dare to compete with the vast creation of the Almighty God. They use their God given ability of reasoning to reason that there’s not a God. Or to suppose that the all-knowing, all-powerful, eternal God is now outdated and his laws need to change with the times.

Sometimes I imagine God looking down on us and shaking his head. He’s not surprised because in his infinite wisdom he knew this would happen. He tells us all about it in the Bible, and his predictions have never been wrong yet. But, still, he must be sad. So many are turning away. Believing the lies that the ruler of this world has so masterfully created. God knows the regret they will feel when ultimately the truth is standing before them. The eternal anguish they will feel when they look Jesus Christ in the face and realize that all of their knowledge, wealth, fame, politics, deeds, or whatever else they gave their soul to – good, bad or otherwise – has evaporated. And there before them stands this Jesus they’d heard about. The one they callously shrugged off. The one they either ignored or fought against. The one way to eternal life.

But at that moment it will be too late.

“Fear God,” he shouted. “Give glory to him. For the time has come when he will sit as judge. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and all the springs of water.” (Revelation 14:7 NLT)

Who will not fear you, Lord, and glorify your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous deeds have been revealed.” (Revelation 15:4 NLT)

“The fancy things you loved so much are gone,” they cry. “All your luxuries and splendor are gone forever, never to be yours again.” (Revelation 18:14 NLT)

And I saw a great white throne and the one sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence, but they found no place to hide. (Revelation 20:11 NLT)

I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” …And he also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life. All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be my children. (Revelation 21:3-4, 6-7 NLT)

I suppose, if you dare, you could think that Christianity is false, and that Jesus was just a man and that his resurrection never happened. I suppose, if you dare, you could laugh in the face of the fulfilled prophecies and amazing miracles God’s people have experienced since time began. I suppose, if you dare, you could come up with your own version of what happens when the life you now live comes to an end.

But what if you’re wrong ???