Napkin Christians

Scripture:  Matt. 25:14-30; Lk. 19:12-27

Last week we dealt with the Law versus Christ’s Words.  We have established the fact that law and religion are in the same category; both deal with externals and tend to hypocrisy. They can cover up the real heart condition.  With Christ’s in-living presence we have all the resources of the Godhead available to help us live as God wants us to.  God has given us a responsibility and we will consider two parables to help us understand what this is.

THINK ABOUT THIS 

I hope you will check out the following two portions of scripture this week dealing with these parables:

Matt. 25:14-30  The Talents

Lk. 19:12-27  The Pound (money)

Our responsibility is plain – it’s to reproduce Christ’s life and to manifest the qualities of His life on earth.  Jesus used money as a fitting symbol of His goods, since it is capable of increase.  Our men in the parables had tangible things entrusted to them.  In each case, two out of the three made increase with their goods while the other one “wrapped it up in a napkin” and did nothing with it.  God doesn’t give us tangible things to invest; but there are spiritual qualities of Christ that we can invest in and show to the world that will bring increase.  Here are just a few: (Take time to think of more)

>Humility—Pride is man’s basic characteristic.  Humility is the antidote as we yield our lives to Him.  Jn.13:1-5

>Love –Christ is the prime example and He wants love to be expressed through us daily.  I Cor. 13:1-3

>Peace—This is not a surface happiness, but inward, abiding joy, untouched by circumstances.  Jn. 15:11

REMEMBER THIS:

Looking back at Lk. 19:20, what did the one do with his pound?  He kept it laid up in a napkin.  How can we compare this to a Christian?  We can become “Napkin” Christians” by keeping Christ’s “goods” wrapped up and never using them.  Why does this happen?  The flesh (self-life) is the foe of the Spirit.  It doesn’t allow the Spirit to develop the qualities of Christ-likeness.

This is what is happening to so many Christians today.  Christ is benefiting them nothing, even though He is there all the time.  We go through so much unnecessary agony simply because we go it alone…trying to do OUR best.

The Galatian Christians were having this problem. (Gal. 4:19)  They were mixing law and grace.

So here’s the solution (or the challenge):

As the Virgin Mary yielded her body to the Holy Spirit to give the Lord Jesus Christ a flesh and blood existence and experience, we should also turn our bodies over to the Holy Spirit, that He may form Christ in us. In doing so, we give Him a flesh and blood existence and experience in our day, even through ourselves.

“Until Christ be formed in you.”

Gal. 4:19

This won’t happen if we are “Napkin Christians.”  So, let’s get rid of the napkin and let Christ’s “Goods” be seen in us.

 

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