What are you? Part time Christian or full time Christian?
A couple of weeks ago in a local newspaper there was a complaint by a student concerning her test results. She ended up with 99.95% and was complaining that she should have received 100% Personally; I admire her for her very high achievement. 99.95% is not too shabby nowadays! Actually, it is a fabulous result for an examination. During my days at school, 40% was the pass mark. At the best of times, tests and exams were a struggle for me! As I now often (jokingly) refer to all the clever people out there, I also have a PhD - “Passed High-School with Difficulty!
Did you enjoy writing examinations? Most of the time I hated it! All the clever students loved it. I never could really understand it because sport and garage parties were much more interesting avenues to explore! Studying for tests or exams just placed a heavy on all after school activities.
I have heard it said that if 40% is the pass mark and you get 41% it represents 1% wasted effort. We used to say that 40% is pass, 41% is a “B” and 42% is an “A”! We can laugh about it but let me ask you the following question - Two medical students write their final exams. A pass mark of 50% is required. One of the students get 98% and the other 51% What do you call them? The answer is you call both of them “Doctor”. So the next question is: “Which Doctor would you prefer to consult?”
How does this affect us in our Christian Faith? First of all we need to realise that there is no such thing as a part time Christian. It’s not possible to be 50% Christian and 50% pagan. In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is recorded as having said: "No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Matthew 6:24) It is just as true today as it was ± 2 000 years ago!
In spite of this many Christians think they can live like this and serve two masters. All day Sunday, they are Christian. For the rest of the week they are anything but Christian! It doesn’t work like this! You are either pregnant or you are not pregnant – you cannot be half pregnant!
King Solomon wrote the following in Ecclesiastes 9:10 – “Whatever you do, do well. For when you go to the grave, there will be no work or planning or knowledge or wisdom.” Another way to put it is to say, “This isn’t a dress rehearsal. You only get one shot at life!”
We need to be radical Christians. Anything less than 100% is only serving God part time. Yes, there are problems and difficult circumstances we all face. It might be difficult but does Philippians 4:13 not say: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!” And Jeremiah 6:33 “‘Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” How would you feel if Jesus said to you He will only be with you 50% of the time? Most likely you would ask Him, “Lord, please tell me when You are not around. That’s when Satan’s attack will be the greatest. I need to know so that I can prepare for war!”
On top of this, it’s time to realise that every moment in life is your time for being a witness for Christ! As the Word of God says – there are only two times to preach the Gospel – timely and untimely! Another aspect is to live our lives that it is the witness to who and what we are. Only when necessary we need to use words! And guess what - what you are speaks much louder than what you say.
So the question is asked again - What are you? Part time Christian or full time Christian?