This was so long, I had to split it up. Part 2 will be posted tomorrow.
My husband and I were talking this morning and he told me something that I thought was so profound I just have to share it.
He said that Jesus went around teaching and crowds would gather. In John 6 the story of the miracle Jesus performed with the loaves and fishes is in the first part of the chapter. Later in that chapter, the following day, the people realized Jesus had left so they went hunting Him. When they caught up with Him, he called them out.
He knew that they had come looking for Him for the free bread, not the lesson.
That is what so many people are doing now when they come to church, looking for free bread but not interested in the education.
And so many churches are accommodating them.
So, after my husband left, I was thinking about this. He is right. People come to church, they enjoy the communion with God, maybe get a little of the Holy Ghost, hear some feel good sermon and they go home after getting their fill of free bread.
What do you suppose would happen if preachers started teaching from the pulpit? What if pastors started teaching doctrine and standards of holiness?
I think a majority of the people would freak out.
Free bread is fun, but when you have to start paying the price, a lot of the fun is gone. The fellowship and worship is fun, but the instruction is a necessity!
35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe.37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”
Unfortunately, many people are only seeing a small part of what God has to offer them. They aren’t being shown it, but I wonder if they really want to see it. See, as Christians, we are called to certain standards. There are certain things we say and do and think. We should be trying very hard every single day to be just like Jesus. We should be doing our best to kill off the fleshly parts of us and allowing God to fill us with His spirit.
But people have to be taught that. You can’t crave something that you don’t know. You may feel a void, like something is missing, but you can’t name it or target it if you don’t know it.
And if you are only getting free bread from your church, you are being cheated. If you aren’t being taught scripture, doctrine and standards of holiness, you are being cheated and, worse, you are being deceived.
And that deception is all around us, every day.