For the longest time, I thought faithfulness had died in our culture. I was so wrong. Faithfulness has not died; it has been misplaced. Every single person on this earth is faithful to something. The problem with our faithfulness is the object of our faithfulness.
The unsaved person of this world has no problem being faithful to his favorite football team on Sunday. The unsaved person of this world has no problem being faithful to his drinking buddies or his sinful addiction. The unsaved people are not the problem with misplaced faithfulness; Christians are the problem. I fully expect a non- believer to miss church on Sunday to go to a Titans game. I do not expect that from someone who has been purchased with the blood of Christ. I fully expect an unsaved person to be addicted to drugs or lustful thoughts. I do not expect a Christian to fall when he has the Holy Spirit living inside him to give him victory over Satan. I know what you are thinking, “Do Christians really struggle with these obvious sins?”
USA Today introduced a statistic that says 72% of people who claim “God, a higher or supreme being, exists,” do not attend church even on holidays. This leaves an anemic 28% of people who claim God do not attend a local church on any Sunday. Where has our faithfulness gone? How can we expect the non-believers to be knocking down the doors to the church if Christians aren’t? Just because you are not faithful to God and His commandments does not mean that you are not faithful. You are faithful to something; what is it? Are you more faithful to your sports team than to the house of God? Are you more faithful to your cell phone than to God’s Word? To what are you faithful?
God calls us to be faithful in four major areas:
GOD CALLS US TO BE FAITHFUL TO HIS WORD.
In September of 2012, Lifeway Christian Research released a statistic that declares that only 19% of Christians who want to please God read their Bibles every day. Only one out of every five Christians reads his Bible. I would dare say that if we asked the people who sit in the pews of Franklin Road, we would be surprised as well. Sometimes I wonder how many problems and pitfalls Christians could avoid if they would simply read their Bibles. This is the most basic of all Christian principles, yet Christians have misplaced their faithfulness on other material and worldly objects.
Bible reading is part of the relationship we have with Christ. My wife never had to command me to read love letters from her. I never have to be commanded to look at a text or a phone call from family. I believe with my whole heart that Jesus wants us to experience His love letter for ourselves; but because God commands us to read His Word, we naturally do not want to do it. If we would pick up God’s Word and dig into what He has for us, we would be hooked. When God’s Word truly becomes a “lamp to our feet, and a light to our path,” we will become faithful to it. God knows that His Word can help us, but only if we commit to being faithful to it.
GOD CALLS US TO BE FAITHFUL IN OUR WORSHIP.
Hebrews 10:25 says, “Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” The new trend in the world is that we can worship wherever we want. This is true, but we must not miss the role of the church. Jesus Christ died for the church. Jesus established the church with the calling of the twelve disciples. The local church is the heart of Jesus Christ.
Hebrews 10:25 talks about church attendance, but even more than that, it talks about faithfulness. Without even saying the word faithfulness, this verse exemplifies this important truth. The writer says that we should be found assembling together as we see the end drawing near. There is no doubt that Jesus could return at any moment. Will you be found faithful in God’s house? Sometimes I wonder what would happen if Jesus returned on a Sunday. How many people would have a lot of explaining to do when they showed up to Heaven in a football jersey? This is probably not Biblical but very thought- provoking.
GOD CALLS US TO BE FAITHFUL IN OUR WALK.
The Bible describes our lifestyle with the word conversation. What do people hear when they look at our lives? We could very easily be faithful to God’s Word and to church yet fail in our walk. There are a lot of Christians who read their Bibles, pray, and attend church, yet the world sees them as a fake because they see how they act outside church. Many men who dress up for Sunday morning lose their families because their suits did not match their hearts.
Paul wrote to the church of Ephesus, “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.” First of all, we all have the job of being a better Christian. Some may have the job of being a better husband or father this year. Some may have the job of being a better co-worker this year. We must decide personally, but I guarantee everyone can make adjustments. If we are more faithful to a group of hunting buddies, but lose our wife or kids, we will have chosen the wrong object of our faithfulness.
GOD CALLS US TO BE FAITHFUL IN OUR WITNESS.
In the book The Unchurched Next Door, Dr. Thom Rainier gave a statistic that scared me. He said that 98% of church-goers never extend a church invitation to a friend or family member. What if the twelve disciples had adopted this form of evangelism? We would probably have never heard the Gospel. Telling others about Christ was the life and focus of the disciples.
If we all decide to be faithful in these four areas, where will this church be? I want to challenge you to dig into God’s Word, to not miss a service at church, to develop Biblical relationships with friends and family, and to tell others about Christ. Will you be found faithful in the things that matter to God or to the world?