In a recent blogpost, the Scottish church planter, Mez McConnell writes…
“I remember vividly my early days in the church. Everything was new and fresh. There was a large young people’s group and there was a real buzz, about the place. It was exciting being a Christian around people like that. It made church seem like the place to be.
“But, as time went on, more and more people fell by the wayside. One by one, people I had thought were solid Christians just drifted away from the group, the church and the faith. 20 years on and very few attend a church today. It is a great tragedy. Even the man who gave me a home out of prison and introduced me to Christ won’t talk about the gospel anymore. It is heartbreaking.
“This has been our experience in Niddrie too. I tell our new interns every year to take a good look around because some of them, and the people they will meet, will be here next year and some of them will be gone. It’s happened before and it’ll happen again.
“How does that happen to people? Why do they come for a while, confess faith in Jesus and then they melt out of the picture?
“Their early excitement is gone. Lost, seemingly, forever.
“In the letter to the Hebrews we have a group of second-generation believers who were facing pressure to look for alternatives to following Jesus. The author is desperate for these believers. He fears for them and their faith and goes to great lengths to prove the superiority of Jesus Christ, hitting them with theological gold in chapter 1. In chapter 2 he turns to address them in a practical way:
“Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it.” (Hebrews 2:1 ESV)
I would encourage you to continue reading Mez’s blog here, but you get his basic point: we need the Bible. And if you think you’re doing fine without careful attention to the Scriptures, you are a step away from spiritual death…
Because here’s the truth: if you want to stay alive physically, you need to eat food; and if you want to stay alive spiritually, you need to eat spiritual food. So if you meet a man who thinks he is doing fine without eating, you know you have met a person who is seriously deluded. Similarly, if you meet someone who names the name of Christ and thinks the Bible is a take-it-or-leave-it proposition, you have met someone who is being deceived. Paul certainly thought so. He felt the Scriptures, and all the Scriptures, were absolutely indispensable…
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 2 Timothy 3:16 (ESV)
So…how are you doing at paying careful attention to the words that were breathed out by God?
For tomorrow, Wednesday, September 9th: 2 Timothy 4