Season: 5 Episode: 071
What is weak Christianity? Should we be concerned as a body of Christ when others don’t speak up and stand for the Truth? How does this impact culture? Shanda answers all of these questions and will encourage you to make a difference, even if you’re the only one left standing.
“The fear of God eliminates the fear of man.”
“Faith is always tested on small scales before it’s tested in big ways.”
“It does’t take much or many to make a difference.”
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Hey guys! Welcome back to another episode of Her Faith Inspires podcast where we take cultural issues and align them to biblical truth.
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Today we are talking about the dangers and consequences of weak Christianity.
And I know that can seem vague or maybe even subjective, but I am going to provide Scripture for us to put this into perspective.
I’ve already mentioned on the episode “Speak now or forever hold your peace” that Christians have barely started getting canceled by cancel culture but we are the ones who have take ourselves out of the conversations in society and much of that has to do with lack of knowledge.
The fact of the matter is we just don’t know enough about our own faith to step into the arena of culture and stand up against the lies of the enemy. What happens when we do that? For one, we are in a spiritual battle. When we don’t step into the conversations, we’ve bowed out of the battle.
I’ll elaborate on that more as we get into todays episode.
A couple of weeks ago, Bethel Christians Services, the largest evangelical adoption and foster agency, announced that they were going to open their adoption services to same sex couples. Just two years ago, the agency changed their policies in Philadelphia after feeling the pressure from city authorities. Now, they went national before there was even an issue nationally.
They bowed the knee. They surrendered to the mob. In 2007, Bethel issued an official position stating, “God’s design for the family is a covenant and lifelong marriage of one man and one woman.”
So what happened?
I can give you an idea … in 2007, it was easier to take a stand. In 2007 there was no cancel culture. The president wasn’t talking about trans surgery and the government wasn’t adjusting gender pronouns. In 2007 same sex marriage wasn’t legalized nationally. And because of the pressures, Bethel buckled at the knees.
Today we’re going to discuss the dangers of weak Christianity and the consequences of it.
- What does compromise look like for a Christian and is it ever OK to compromise?
- What breeds weak Christianity?
- How can you become bold and courageous to take a stand in today’s society?
What does compromise look like for a Christian and is it ever OK to do it?
One of the things we learn when it comes to relationships is to compromise. Compromise means A settlement of differences in which each side makes concessions.
We sort of meet in the middle, so to speak. We understand we may not see eye to eye, but we’re willing to give some things up in order to save face. Compromise is necessary in marital relationships, friendships, and familial relationships.
If I’m in the mood for seafood and my husband is in the mood for steak, maybe we will compromise and choose seafood for dinner tonight and a steakhouse next week. Or maybe we’ll choose a restaurant that has surf and turf so we both get what we want.
Either way, we work it out.
But is it possible to do that with deeply held convictions? Is it possible to do that with Truth? Can you compromise truth? According to the law of logic: the law of the excluded middle, something is either true or it’s not. There is no in between when it comes to truth. How do we rectify that in culture with the Truth of God’s word?
When it comes to disagreements that do not violate God’s commands, we can compromise. However, when it comes to compromising God’s commands, we cannot. His standard will never change.
The religious people of Jesus’ day knew He was the Son of God. But they rejected Him because they loved the praises of men more than the praises of God (John 12:43). They compromised because they loved to please men. That is what Bethel Christian Services did.
When we fear men more than God, we will compromise God’s truth for the desires of culture.
Jesus said we cannot serve two masters. We can only be devoted to one.
Here’s the thing about compromising with the world: it will never be enough. Evil never rests. How do we know? Look at the progression of same sex marriage.
The first lawsuits regarding same sex marriage started in the 1970’s. The biggest argument for this was that homosexuals wanted the right to marry. That’s not the issue for Christians. The issue is the definition of marriage which is a union set forth by God between one man and one woman. To allow homosexuals to marry means you have to change the definition of marriage itself.
In 1998, same sex couples were allowed to put each other on health insurance in some states.
In Feb, 2004, the first gay couple wed in San Francisco. Massachusettes legalized same sex marriage in May of 2004.
In 2008, California and Connecticut legalized same sex marriage. More and more states began legalizing it and by 2015 there were only 13 of the 50 states who had a “Defense of Marriage Act” in place.
On June 26, 2015, the White House lit up with the outside with rainbow colors to celebrate the Supreme Courts decision to allow same sex couples to marry nationwide.
Culture won the battle on gay marriage.
At the time, people asked. “If we allow the definition of marriage to change, what makes you think we won’t take this further? What is going to happen when someone wants to marry their grandma or a dog?” We were told how silly those questions were. That will never happen. People aren’t going to deny reality.
Here we are, not even 6 years later, and the government is discouraging the usage of gender pronouns and titles like mom, dad, sister, brother, etc. We are no longer talking about same sex marriage as much as we’re discussing whether or not biological boys should be allowed to be girls and to participle in sports as females.
So, let me ask you … who’s compromising? Because it’s not the world. The world does what it promises to do … they continue moving the line of compromise further and further away from truth.
Who is asked to compromise? Those of us who claim to hold to God’s standard.
This is dangerous. It’s dangerous for society, it’s dangerous for our future and it’s dangerous for the day we stand before God. Because let’s not forget, there will be a day of reckoning before the Judge of this world and I tremble thinking about how the church has compromised His standards in the name of love and tolerance.
So, is it ever OK to compromise as a Christian? Not when it comes to God’s word. Look, you didn’t write the word of God, and neither did I.
Lauren Daigle was asked a couple of years ago what she thought about homosexuals. This is a trap for sure. First of all, she sings Christian music. The CEO of Chik-Fil-A was asked the same question.
Why would someone ask that?
If someone asked me what I thought about gay marriage, my first response is, “It doesn’t matter what I think.” Because it doesn’t. I am upholding a truth that God instituted so if you ask me what my source of truth is when it comes to issues on homosexuality, I will point you to my source which is the word of God.
This comes back to our worldview, and how we see the world depends the source we draw from. Everyone has one. Everyone.
But Lauren said, “I don’t know. I’m still learning, Read the Bible and when you find out let me know.” That just really irked me. That’s the problem with weak Christianity. We’ve learned to make our millions off the ministry so when we are threatened to lose our millions, we get weak.
She should know.
She should. If she can sing about the goodness of God and lead others to His goodness, she better know His word.
I know that’s easy for me to say on this side of the fame, fortune and her following. But it’s a lesson for me. It’s a lesson not to get caught up in the hype. Don’t rely on popularity to pay my bills. Don’t love the praises of men more than the praises of God. It’s a trap that will catch you up every time.
Compromise of God’s word is NEVER ok for the Christian. Never. If you want to compromise on dinner, go for it. But the commandments of God? Never.
What breeds weak Christianity?
There is a misconception that Christians think our faith is a passive faith. When we hold to those misconceptions, we draw back. But the word of God shows that this is a spiritual battle we are in. Like it or not, we’re in it. We’re either fighting it or we’re hiding in trenches trying to steer clear of the arrows flying around us. Some of us, like Bethel Christian Services, are waving the white flag of surrender.
But the Bible speaks on how to approach culture. Jude started his letter by saying he wanted to write to the Jews about their their common salvation, but felt compelled to urge them to contend for the faith. He saw the church was threatened by fakes and false teachings.
The Greek word “contend” has the same meaning as wrestle or grapple as in a ring. It means we have an opponent and we go toe-to-toe with them.
That is not a passive faith.
The Christian life often involveds wrestling. We wrestle against our own flesh. Paul said the things he does he hates and the things he wants to do he doesn’t do. He wrestles against the sinful nature. And in Ephesians 6, he said we don’t wrestle against flesh and blood. He said we also wrestle in spiritual warfare. How do we do that? With the armor of God which is all spiritual things: prayer, salvation, truth, faith, the word of God, righteousness, the gospel of peace.
Jesus said sometimes prayer is wrestling. We have to ask, then we seek and sometimes we beat on the door and knock because we need God to come to our rescue. That’s not passive prayer.
Weak Christianity is passive. If we can’t even post a picture about how Planned Parenthood gets 1.7 million dollars each day by the government to murder babies because we’re afraid of offending our surface level friendships, we are not contending for the faith, my friend.
Paul says in Corinthians that we demolish every argument.
Demolish. That is a Christian on the offense. That is a Christian unafraid to enter into the conversations of culture and gently but firmly speak into these topics. It’s not a passive truth bearer.
So what brings weak Christianity?
The first and most important contributor to weak Christianity is a lack of biblical knowledge. We are a Christian nation by name only. We do not know the word of God.
I was talking to a friend the other day about the parable of the sower. And if you look in Matthew 13:1-23, you will find the parable. Jesus describes the relationship between the condition of the heart and the receptiveness to the word of God.
There was one particular heart condition I wanted my friend to take note of.
Jesus mentioned that when the seed fell among the rocks, it immediately sprang up. But when the sun came out, it scorched the plant because it had no root.
Later, Jesus’ disciples asked Him what the meaning of the parable was and He said this about the seed that fell among the rocks:
He said the seed that falls on rocky ground is like one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy. But since they have no root they last only a short time. Why? Because when persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.
There are a few things I want you to notice … the seed represents the word of God. It must be sewn into our hearts and it must take root. Why?
The word will always be tested. Always.
I shared the story of my professor challenging me in college about a paper I wrote on my faith and when he called me out I was freaked out. But I believe that in the grand scheme of life, that was a small test of my faith. Would I buckle under the pressure of a professor and an auditorium full to students? If so, I will buckle under the pressure of standing for God’s word in much bigger ways. Our faith is always tested on small scales first. If we cannot be faithful with little, we won’t be faithful with bigger tests.
The success of persevering through tough times depends on the word of God and it taking root in our hearts.
That is why I will always tell you to read your bible for yourself.
Forget the fluffy women’s studies that hold no substance. Forget the ones that want you to sit around and sing cum-by-ya while everyone is crying together. Dig into the word. Ask God to break up the fallow ground of your heart so that the word will take root and to make you bold in the process.
Weak Christianity stems from not being in the word of God. Because when we are not in the word … passivity, staying silent, and being apathetic is what we get.
How can you become bold and courageous to take a stand today?
I’m going to be honest with you and tell you that America is becoming a godless nation. When our politicians say, “God bless America” in one breath and support abortion, gender fluidity, and other anti-biblical policies in the same speech … I believe God laughs.
God will not be mocked.
He is not a God who will allow us to be Christian in name only. God wants ambassadors for Christ. Jesus talks about persevering and overcoming in the book of Revelation. He talks about holding fast to His name.
So, first things first … hold fast to His name. What does that mean? Do not compromise on the gospel.
Jesus is the gospel.
Do not compromise on the fundamentals of the faith: sin, salvation, repentance, righteousness, holiness and all the things Christianity is built on.
Secondly, read the bible. Be careful who you listen to. Be a Berrean (Acts 17), and check your pastors, teachers, podcasters, ministry leaders and anyone else you allow to pour into your life. That is your responsibility.
Third, the disciples asked God for boldness in Acts. It doesn’t come naturally to stand for truth when there is a danger or threat to doing so. I ask for boldness, strength and courage all the time.
Don’t be passive. Call your senators and tell them how to represent you. That is their job. Let your voice be heard. Stand up for those who cannot stand up for themselves … like the unborn.
You may say, “Shanda, I’m not a controversial person.
I don’t like to get involved in those kinds of things.” Contrary to what it may seem, I don’t either. I don’t want to be dubbed an “influencer”. It’s not a desire of mine to be known by the world. I don’t want to have anything to do with fame or people hating me. I want to live a quiet life and keep to myself. But God did not call us to do that.
He called us to be the light. He called us to be salt. Jesus called us to defend the faith. He called us to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. He called us to make disciples of all nations.
I used to learn about the historical events of David, Daniel, Gideon, Deborah, Esther (love that), Shadrach, Meshach, Ebednego and I wondered if I would ever be used in such a great way.
But then I matured. I studied their lives and I realized … it wasn’t glamourous. They didn’t sit around and think of how great it was that they put their lives on the line for their faith. Also, they actually faced uncertainty just like we do.
They faced the unknown, just like we do.
They faced dangers and threats and they didn’t know if God would show up or not … just like we do. They were scared human beings just like us.
But do you know what they did? Esther said, “If I perish, I perish.” Shadrasch, Meshach and Abednego said, “God has the power to deliver us from your hand, O King, and from the fiery furnace. But if He doesn’t …… if He doesn’t …. We will not bow,”
Is that you? I don’t ever say, “Oh, I know I won’t bow. I know I’d lay down my life. I’ll stand for truth at all costs” Nope!! I don’t say that.
You know what I do?
I say, “God, I pray I don’t have to face it, but if I do, God … let me endure to the end. Give me strength, God. Give me courage. I don’t want to bow.”
I’m not telling you it’s not scary. I’m not telling you there’s not a cost. Jesus said to count the cost. But I tell myself I’d rather pay the price this side of heaven than to pay the price in an eternity separate from God.
Jesus said in Luke 9:26, “He who is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when He comes into His glory and the glory of the Father and of His angels.”
I don’t want that. I want to hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
As we close this up, I want to give you a visual of what I imagine it looked like the day Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego went to the fiery furnace.
The statue was erected and the decree was given, “At the sound of the trumpet, everyone who heard it would stop what they were doing and bow their faces to the ground in worship to Nebechednezzar.”
This is Babylon we’re talking about here. The most dangerous, pagan nation on the face of the earth at the time. And there were seas of people. Thousands upon thousands in the crowd. And the trumpet blasted and men and women everywhere took to their knees and fell on their faces. And in a sea of prostrate, fearful men and women, three stood.
Can you imagine what that looked like?
Three were on their feet while thousands were on the ground.
Let me encourage you today by saying this, it doesn’t take much or many to make a difference. And to be honest, it won’t be much or many. Because when it comes down to it, it’s hard to go against culture.
But if those men would not have taken a stand, they never would have seen the power of God and we would not be reading their story today. They would have been just another face in the crowd.
That’s not the life the Christian is meant to live. Stand on the word and you will stand firm and you will see the mighty hand of the Lord move in your life.
Take heart, my friend. Good things are ahead and we need you to join the ranks of ambassadors for Christ. Have a great week and I’ll catch you on the next one!