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jstrang
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Joined: 2011/10/21
Posts: 145
Marshfield, Wisconsin

 Have We Drunk the Dregs of Commonality?

Have We Drunk The Dregs of Commonality?

Intro

I find that it is almost preposterous regurgitating the obvious and most recent sins among men in cup thornsthe world today, but unfortunately the present realities of spiritual deadness and hellacious atrocities against Christians has not yet rallied the men in the church of Jesus Christ in our culture to attention. Here let me be straight forward: God is calling the men who make a profession to the Christian faith to rise up and “act like men.”[1] It is not enough to simply drive the family to a building on Sunday and maybe Wednesday night. Now more than ever true biblical Christianity must come forward being led by godly, humble, meek, contrite and prayerful men.

Swallowed up in Commonality

These days’ men look more like the philosophies of cultural ignorance and that of a select few Bible verses taken out of context than men who are living boldly in the whole truth of the Scriptures. Whether this is due to a lack of regeneration or merely cowardly and Gospel ignorant would make for an interesting discussion, either way, commonality is a beast that is swallowing many alive. By commonality I mean this, when something, someone, or the routine of life becomes so common place it is taken for granted and treated as if it is insignificant and of no concern. Commonality is pulling many men down into the waves of regression and a self-centered lifestyle. I can hear the prophet Elijah saying to us today, “How long will you go on limping between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him, but if Baal, then follow Him.”[2]

Men, when we are no longer concerned and distraught over what we see and know to be true in our present day, and this to the point where our response is simply turning the page of a newspaper, flipping the channel on the television, or clicking through the internet searching for something to stir our emotions, then we are in great danger. If we are so desensitized to the sin in our world and the mutilation of our fellow human beings, then how in the world can we ever live in a passionate pursuit of the glory and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ?[3] Furthermore, how can we ever cherish our wives and children and cultivate a God-fearing, God-honoring, and God-sustaining reality in the home front? Or how about our personal private lives where we allow sin to have a field day in our minds and give way to the desires of our heart?[4]

You see, when commonality of a routine life sets in begging our constant attention to things that really do not matter then we begin a spiritual downward spiral. Further fueled by the unchecked pride of self and the lusts of the flesh, we put ourselves in the center limelight. And when we do, we plow a path hardened by self-preservation, narcissism, and carelessness towards, God, towards our families, and towards the concerns of others. A sort of numbness sets in and the day-to-day tasks take hold of a man, even to the point of blatant idolatry. How in the world can we ever be amazed by the vast and wonderful grace of God if we never see our absolute need? And how can we see our absolute need when we are too busy giving attention to the wants of self?

How Shall We Escape?

We must first do as Paul told the church at Corinth when he said, “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? – unless indeed you fail to meet the test!”[5] Here is where a great many of us just don’t want to go, but we must. We must come to the awareness of our own present reality and our true condition in regards to Christ. We must ask ourselves if we have played the fool and been taken captive to commonality and a deeply self-centered lifestyle. We must examine ourselves biblically and balanced in the Scriptures. Have we indeed been made new? Has Christ truly been wraught about in our heart? Once we understand our true position in regards to Christ, and if we have been found wanting, then we must re-center our eyes and re-tune our ears. Our boast ought to be that we know God and understand Him,[6] and that Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, fills our entire vision.

We must “lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”[7]

Final Thoughts

I truly believe that we in the western world have been lulled to sleep from our spiritual guard-post. I also believe this is directly due to the overabundance[8] and the rapidity of service that we have come to expect. We have everything and we expect everything, therefore everything has become common. We are not faced, at least not yet, with life and death, starvation, and utter poverty.

Having said all this, let’s bring this down to the home place here and now. Many, I dare say most, men who profess to be a Christian have given up on prayer because their prayers have been hindered. Not hearing from God, maybe never having truly known God, would surely drive men away from prayer. Consider 1 Peter 3:7 for a moment. “Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.” When our wives become commonplace, then we allow all kinds of sin to persuade our minds and we begin to treat our wives in ways that defy the word of God.

A refocusing onto Christ alone is our only answer. Consider for a moment the placement of 1 Peter 3:7 that you just read. Now go and read 1 Peter 2:20-23 and 1 Peter 4:1-9. After reading these passages, re-read 1 Peter 3:7 and think about the context. Think about all the excuses we give so that we do not need to repent, forgive others, and mistreat our wives. Think about how Christ suffered and never reviled in return and how He kept laying His life down in service and then apply this in your marriage, in your work and in your lack of commitment unto Christ.

Choose this day whom you will serve. “Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy.’”[9] “I have written briefly to you, exhorting and declaring that this is the true grace of God.”[10]

If we men would spend truly devoted time with the God that we claim, time in prayer, time reading and pondering the Word of God, then many of the issues, sins, complacency, and commonality would indeed begin to disappear. We could then actually get to the place where we “pray continually”[11] and constantly live with Christ in the forefront of all our ways. How will we who are called to the guard-watch in this hour be remembered? Have we drunk down the dregs of commonality whereby we will not repent and turn again to Lord and Savior of the world? Our personal response of turning unto a lifelong pursuit of walking intimately with Jesus Christ will be our evidence. “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith?”[12]

-Jeremy B. Strang

Christian. Husband. Father. Author.
www.jeremybstrang.com
www.time2stand.com


[1] 1 Corinthians 16:13 – All Scriptures are from the ESV.

[2] 1 Kings 18:21

[3] Matthew 24 should call us to attention.

[4] James 1:14, 15

[5] 2 Corinthians 13:5

[6] Jeremiah 9:23, 24

[7] Hebrews 12:1-2

[8] See Ezekiel 16:49

[9] 1 Peter 1:13-15

[10] 1 Peter 5:12 Think about how Peter had written about holiness in the life of the believer, submission, hindrances to prayer, and persecution.

[11] 1 Thessalonians 5:17

[12] Luke 18:8


_________________
Jeremy B Strang

 2015/3/9 0:35Profile
ThyKingCome
Member



Joined: 2011/4/19
Posts: 169
Southern CA

 Re: Have We Drunk the Dregs of Commonality?

Awesome word Jeremy. My heart sang in agreement. If the Lord Jesus is the Head of His Church (and He is) then I would place the responsibility of the men of the church to be the spine and backbone of the church. Because there is so much passivity among us men, we see much indifference and leaderlessness in the church. Churches of 3000 people have a women's ministry that brings in hundreds of women multiple times per week to study the Word and fellowship, but the men's minstry may be roughly 20-30 only. Of course this is not in every church, but I think there are enough instances like this that can help us gauge things.

Of course men's ministry attendance is not the only way to check the spiritual climate of the men of any given church, but rather looking at the eldership, to the family structure and so on. I believe with all my heart that if the men of the local church can be reached with the gospel, then the whole church can be reached. The pastors cannot disciple every member of the local church personally, but if they reach the men, the heads of the households, then those men can in turn go and reach their wives and children. This was God's model and purpose all along. Even at the institution of the Passover in Exodus, God did not appoint one priest to prepare all of the lambs for the families, but it was meant to be "a lamb per household" meaning that each man was to act as priest over his own home in this manner, feeding the "Lamb" and ministering the sacrifice to his family.

How we have strayed!

There is yet hope brother! Christ is stirring and moving even still! May we receive this Word with all readiness and become the kinds of men the Bible teaches we are to be in the Scriptures you have shared, and may we couple that admonition with the power of the Holy Spirit and the fullness of the indwelling life of Jesus in us to do this work. In our own strength we will fail, but with God on our side (and on the inside!) we shall leap over a wall, run against a troop, have our hands trained for war and bend a bow of bronze.


_________________
Brother Kevin

 2015/3/9 12:13Profile
sprice
Member



Joined: 2005/9/1
Posts: 14


 Re: Have We Drunk the Dregs of Commonality?

Thanks Jeremy,

Wealth, comfort and prosperity indeed lull one to sleep in the following of Jesus. You can't live for Him when you are living for yourself. Prayer isn't being heard by the Lord and you have correctly landed on one reason which is the way we treat our wives. 1 John 3 also shows us that our prayers will have no affect when we are disobeying God and not pleasing Him, specifically when our hearts condemn us because we aren't believing as we should in the Son and aren't loving the brethern in specific areas like meeting their physical needs and especially their spiritual needs. God says we should have no confidence in such cases to even come before Him and expect any answers. We aren't in His will in life so our prayer life won't be in His will either. He will not regard our prayers if we have regard for iniquity and self indulgence to the neglect of need is certainly iniquity in the Lord's eyes.

 2015/3/10 2:20Profile





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