Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How to Not Fall Away

"You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes." -Deuteronomy 11:18 (ESV)

When you reach a certain age, you and everyone else around you start getting busy with college, work, friends, and just life in general. I have heard several different statistics, but in my own personal experience, about 1/3 people will fall away from Christ before they graduate college. If you do not believe me, look at the number of high-schoolers in the average congregation, and then look at the average number of college-age people. I can guarantee you that no one who was once actively seeking Christ knew that they would fall away before it happened.

We tend to believe that we are invincible at times. "Oh but I will never fall away." we all tell ourselves. However, we can see very clearly that that statement is not necessarily true. We know that those that enter heaven are few (Matthew 7:14). So how can we be sure, absolutely sure that this doesn't happen? How can we be sure that we will not fall away in the future?

Study is crucial to reminding yourself of the importance of Christianity, and of the Law. Deuteronomy 11:16-21 focuses on this. Starting in 16, it says, "Take care lest your heart be deceived, and you turn aside and serve other gods and worship them" Now yes, this was God speaking to the Israelites, but this still applies to us today nonetheless. God was giving them instructions on staying faithful to Him.

In order to serve Christ, we must first know what His commandments are, but we must also remind ourselves of them. I have been a Christian for quite some time, and have grown up hearing His Word my entire life. However, I can guarantee that whenever I do not study constantly, and whenever I do not put effort into learning more about God, I lose interest. And I can promise you, I can guarantee you, that if you do not make sure and write His words upon your hearts, and learn of them and bind them on a sign on your hand (Deuteronomy 11:18) then you will soon forget them, and you will fall away.

"You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorsteps of your house and on your gates, that the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth." (Deuteronomy 11:18-21)

Deuteronomy 11:18-21 gives very clear instructions on how we should view God's commandments. We ought to be constantly reminded of them, and constantly following them. The moment we start making exceptions and stop reminding ourselves of these laws, that is the moment that we begin falling away.

We can show up every Sunday, we can pray every evening, and we can even read our Bibles every
day. If we do not listen to the words we are reading, and if we do not see the words for what they are, and if we do not act upon them and share them, then are we really better off than those who have never known the name of Jesus? (Matthew 10:33)

The thing about Christianity is that it is not an idea that we choose to accept. It is not a pew on Sundays. It is not a list of songs that we sing every week or a certain amount of "Amen"s that we say during each sermon. Christianity is not a mask that hides our true selves.

Christianity is a decision to serve God. It is a decision to bring souls to Him. The reason so many fall away from Christ is because they do not see Christianity for what it is: a life. A life that starts when you are baptized and continues on in the same way until after death.

If you are not living God's Word, then I ask that you change something now. If you are not studying regularly, and making it a point to know and do God's Will, then I implore that you change that. Start now. The deadline is the end of your earthly life, and you can always start now. Just please do not wait to do so. You never know when it is too late, and you will be past the point of no return.