Friday, March 16, 2012

For Heaven's Sake, Don't Relax

"Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary." (Galatians 6:9, NASB)

The Greek word that the NASB translates as “grow weary” in the last part of the above verse is perhaps better translated as “relax.”  Think of a tug of war that is lost when one side simply relaxes their grip.  The exhortation of the apostle Paul then presents a stark confrontation to modern American culture.  For the command is to not give up, not relax in our devotion to doing good.

But, of course, we are constantly taught by our culture leaders to do just the opposite. They tell us to indeed relax, take it easy, and stay cool -- especially when it comes to religious duty.

President Barack Obama, for instance, very much desires that American Christians stay calm, collected and (most of all) pliable when it comes to the removal of the rights of conscience and other heretofore protected freedoms of religion. Relax, he says, it's no big deal. Don't let religious hangups get in the way of really serious golf, vacations and supporting the Nanny State.

But the Scripture tells us to put the priority on doing good (the context of Galatians involves the liberty of Christians to live free of the law, the flesh and the pressures of the world) without any relaxation in our vigilance to do so.

This doesn’t mean that Christians need to live "high-strung" but it does mean, particularly in a culture that emphasizes pleasure, mediocrity and comfortability, that we must always live on high alert.

So, let's help stimulate one another to love and good deeds (Hebrews 10:24) rather than enabling each other's spiritual relaxation.

By the way, the entire series of expository sermons on the book of Galatians that I just finished preaching at Faith Bible Church is available to listen to and/or to download at this particular page of the Vital Signs Ministries website.