A lot of Christians seem to have gotten the wrong idea. They think that as long as they’re happy and do without a few things for the Kingdom of God, everything will be OK for them on the Day of Judgement.
They don’t realize that God has a very specific plan for their lives and that He will require them to answer for how they carried out that plan when they stand before Him.
Influence of the world’s system:
In the systems of this world, we’re taught that our primary goal and purpose is to be “happy”. Whatever it takes, as long as we feel good. This pleasure loving (and soul-destroying) philosophy has crept into the churches and is bought wholesale by the Believers.
For example, you might say, “I want to go to a church where I like the music.” Or, “I want to go to a church where I like the pretty carpets and the beautiful landscaping out front. These things are important to me, and I KNOW God wants me to be happy!”
Did you ever stop to think that God just MIGHT want you in a particular church because there are things He wants you to do for His Kingdom in that church? Or, that there might be a person whom God has assigned to you there?
Like I said, we’ve gotten the wrong idea. See, we think that the reason we go to a particular church is for US. It’s not. It’s for the NEED in the Body of Christ that God places us in a particular church.
He has committed certain people to you and He will require them at your hand on the Judgement Day. If He’s called you to teach Sunday School, but you rather not bother yourself with making a commitment to get up every Sunday and be faithful, guess what? God will STILL hold you responsible for that Sunday school class when you stand before Him on the Judgement Day.
There are many things that God has planned for you to do:
There are many Kingdom tasks that He has set before you, and will require at your hand.
Specifically, that alcoholic that you know needs the Gospel, but you’d feel uncomfortable inviting her to church. Or, the person right there in your church who really needs someone to listen to them, but you don’t really feel like listening to someone else’s problems. I hate to sound insensitive, but, if God has placed someone in your life, He will hold you to answer for whether or not you were faithful. He isn’t going to ask you if you were comfortable, but He WILL ask you if you were faithful.
What about all your “sacrifices”?
We like to point out all the things we don’t do because we’re Christians. We don’t drink alcohol anymore, or smoke dope. We don’t freebase, or smoke blunts anymore. We stopped stealing, because we love the Lord. Doesn’t that at least impress the Lord?
Actually, most of the things that we like to point out as sacrifices are things that the Lord would point out as “privileges.” It’s a privilege to be sober and in your right mind. It’s not a sacrifice at all. It’s a privilege to be honest and upright. We can’t rightly call something a sacrifice when in reality it’s something that the Lord delivered us from, can we?
What about our legitimate sacrifices?
What if we didn’t obey Him, but instead we did other nice things? If God called you to do something as simple as to teach a Sunday school class, or offer someone a ride to church, but you didn’t…and instead put a check for $100 in the offering…do you think He’ll be willing to accept that as a trade for the souls that were lost because of your disobedience?
No, when you and I stand before God, He isn’t going to be asking you our “sacrifices.” He’ll be asking about our obedience. Did we obey Him? Remember, He’s looking for obedience, not sacrifice.
Some of us will have to answer for all the things we did in this life that didn’t amount to anything at all in the Lord’s Kingdom. Like how great we were at shooting pool, dancing, putting on makeup or how nice our lawns looked. We’ll have to explain why we had hours to waste in front of the television and plenty of time to wade through multitudes of paperback novels, but somehow couldn’t find the time for church, prayer or reading our Bibles.
We’ll also have to answer for things left undone, for people unreached and not helped. I really got under a sense of conviction when I was reading in John 17, where Jesus was praying to the Father. He said, “Those that Thou gavest me, I have kept, and none of them is lost.”
I want to be able to say that to the Father when I stand before Him on that day, don’t you? That of those people that He has committed to your keeping and helping, that you haven’t lost any of them through neglect, insensitivity or through the sheer business of having too much to do.
I don’t want to lose even ONE of the souls that the Lord has committed to my keeping. That’s why I hurt so badly when I feel like I’ve let someone down, or maybe did something to make someone think I might not care about them.
God isn’t a hard task maker:
He wants you to be a completely fulfilled and useful individual. God wants the Day of Judgement to be the happiest day of your life. It can be. And, it SHOULD be. To obey really IS better than sacrifice.