Intellectually Aware or Spiritually Engaged?

“The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.” (1 Corinthians 1:18 NLT)

There are many things we can’t understand intellectually. On a lot of levels even Christianity doesn’t make sense. How can we wrap our mind around God becoming a man, born of a virgin, laying down His sinless life in our place, then rising from the dead to overcome sin, death, and the grave for everyone who would believe what He did was for them, offering them forgiveness of sin and new life in Himself?

Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 1:21: “Since God in His wisdom saw to it that the world would never know Him through human wisdom, He has used our foolish preaching to save those who believe.” It’s interesting to me that while, yes, of course, we seek to explain the Gospel in ways that hopefully make sense to our hearers (readers 😊), human understanding alone won’t translate into salvation from our sin.

It occurs to me that there are those in our families, churches, and spheres of influence that “talk the talk,” and to some extent even “walk the walk,” who have never yielded their hearts and lives to Jesus. They think they have, but in their mind 2 + 2 just doesn’t equal 4. How so?

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How can a loving God allow such heart-wrenching tragedies like those that fill our daily news feeds? “If God exists,” they reason, “why doesn’t He stop the blatant defilements that human beings commit against one another?” And I get it, I really do. But we can’t simply view all the horrible things we see and hear every day and not also take note of the ways God is seeking to redeem the hearts and lives of men and women, boys and girls.

A person can sit in their proverbial “ivory tower” making mental note of everything that is wrong with the world and the God who created it, while at the same time professing faith in Jesus, but to me that’s a contradiction. No, of course, faith doesn’t blind us to the unchecked evil in our world, but neither should it result in bitterness, anger, and disdain toward God.

We mustn’t forget we’re in a war and every war has casualties. Satan is a defeated foe who will never surrender; thus, he’s bent on taking as many people to hell with him as possible. He thrives on inoculating people with an intellectual awareness of Jesus, while at the same time doing everything he can to prevent them from becoming spiritually engaged.

It grieves me to see the ways sin cripples and controls those who have become Satan’s agents of destruction – raping, extorting, murdering, lying, violating people young and old. He’s no respecter of anything or anyone and can smile while he’s sticking a knife in your back. And the tragedy to me is that Satan has planted his agents in religions that have “Christian” wrappings but are far from honoring to His glorious name.

Even within solid churches that teach the Bible and are Christ-focused, not only in their preaching, but in and through virtually everything they do, there are those who regularly attend who have intellectual understanding of what they hear, but their faith is an inch deep and a mile wide.

The only antidote to the evil that is rampant in our world and the shallow faith of so many, is the love of God ignited in the hearts and lives of those of us who love Him with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength and are seeking with everything within us to be spiritually engaged in making Him known in our spheres of influence.

Food for thought.

Blessings, Ed 😊

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