The Bible (esp in this end times) has been deemed impractical or belittled, yet it is what our very soul and body truly need. I will cover 3 orientations (by churchgoers) that cause Biblical impracticality or had God loosely experienced.
First, when man’s flesh takes charge and decides that the Bible in its holiness is not relevant.
Second, Christians’ ignorance or evasive stance toward “blessing ONLY comes through Jesus Christ”.
Third, believers’ unwillingness or inability to experience the fullness of the Gospel in Spirit.
1. The Flesh delusively made us deemed the Bible as irrelevant.
Now, the belief that worries me most is not atheism, but a Christian belief that doesn’t believe every word of God is all in its worth practical. In fact, I begin to realize that every form of idolatry has its roots from here. Why do I say so? Because we, as physical living beings will naturally draw our hearts away from impracticality. If we start to find the Bible impractical, we will unconsciously enter into a lukewarm or pseudo Christian belief. Yet God who created us in His fullness, has absolutely provided us with everything we need. It is however impossible for the fallen men to perceive, to feel and be satisfied. Therefore, the Word of God (which creates our soul and body) is revealed, so that the knowledge to know Him comes together with the ability to enjoy Him. The Word, in its amazing power, makes a person desire the right thing, develop the right love, live for the right worth, enjoy every given blessing by the Creator. While it is a process to learn this, we must absolutely accept this as the truth. Even as a pastor, I still have immaturities and struggles in my life, yet I always go back to belief that I can be fully satisfied with God’s Word alone, and every need in my physical flesh (be it food, human love, beauty, wisdom, happiness, etc) are all provided and can be enjoyed abundantly through the satisfaction of His word within my soul. This itself is a God acknowledging and fearing mind.
2. Blessing only come through Jesus Christ.
First, the word “Blessing” has been very much loosely used or perceived nowadays. The instant thought of blessing easily settles on a physical one, e.g. happy family, good job, financial empowerment, smooth sailing lives, obedient kids, peace of heart, etc. Yet, we must go back to what the Bible truly meant by blessing in its true sense. When the Bible first mentioned blessing for men, it was in <Ge 1:28>: God blessed them (Adam and Eve)… Now, the blessing here in its very substance, means having God Himself (i.e. the indwelling of God’s Word and Spirit in them) as everything. It truly meant to say: If a person has the Word and Spirit in Him, he has ALL things, just like the Incarnated Son of man who has nothing, yet having everything. Now, the fallen man wants the world, but the godly man already has the whole world, and he doesn’t work on getting more of it <Jn 6:27>. It is not about having more in this world that defines blessing, but putting one’s whole belief and energy in living out the Person of Jesus. His Purpose, His Way, His Mind is inherently blessing. And whoever believes and embraces it ALREADY lives right in blessing. Now as true believers of Christ, we’re not called to a miserable life, yet we are called to follow Jesus, and to be made like Him everyday in joy. We are not called to show religious piousness, yet we are called to join Christ in His setting apart life and if need be, embrace the sufferings that come. We are not forbid good physical wealth, health, or success, yet because our Lord is coming again, we live as we have none of these and put no value in what we have in this world, other than to live out Christ and build His Church. Brethren, let us not become evasive of the truth in Christ lest we find ourselves compromising our Christian values to relativism.
3. The fullness of the gospel can only be experienced through the Spirit.
I asked God many times; I am a living physical being yet given the Spirit of God. How then do I reconcile my supernatural experience with God apart from having my physical needs met? Now, the Bible says we are dead in sin (in flesh), alive in Christ (in Spirit). Yet becoz of our fallen nature, it is natural that we get fully conscious by what happens in our flesh. I certainly have no misgivings about this, even as I am writing this article. We all get affected over a failure, a loss, when someone hurt us, or not getting what we want. So it’s that flesh thing that springs up and tells us, “hey, you need that success, you need to be happy, you need love, you need justice, you need to be proven right, you just need…” Frankly, if you ask me how much I need, I don’t know. But I just feel I need. And this has prominently become the main philosophy and driving motives of the whole world. The knowledge of men (be it science or philosophy) simply cannot depart from the needs of men. There is yet something else that I discovered during my struggle with spirituality and practicality, i.e. after I have my needs met, I realize 2 things. First, I wasn’t sure if I am truly happy (becoz there’re fears. The fear of losing what I have now, or having my next need unmet). Second, I didn’t love God more. Yes, I seem to be satisfied at that moment, but it didn’t bring me to another spiritual level of loving and desiring God unconditionally. Then I begin to understand that when a man is dead in flesh, he simply cannot be satisfied by things of the flesh. It is like feeding the best food to a corpse, dressing him in the most beautiful clothes. (Now take this figuratively). Yes, our God is good, and in every way. HE gives us unconditionally what our physical body needs, yet it is our spirit that needs to be filled. And it can only be filled when we believe, listen and do the will of God <Jn 4:34>. There is no greater love that can be experienced by our soul other than the love that comes from Obedience. To put it simply, the greatest reward is the Holy Spirit Himself, not the absence of trials or the success/need that is so much wanted. That’s why Paul said: in trouble, in hardship, in persecution, in famine, in nakedness, in danger or sword, IN all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us <Rn 8:37>. As it is, the Bible is not practicalism, but it is the spiritualism of the practical, the descending of the supernatural upon the natural, the inner workings of the soul that overcome the outside world. In a nutshell, the Gospel is spiritual and every true believer must seek to experience God with a progression toward Spirituality. Yet brethren, beware of today’s relativism and materialism that has downplayed this core experience. And much of our Christian joy has thus often been stolen.
<Jn 6:27>: Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”
<Jn 4:34>: “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”
<Rn 6:11>: In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
<Rn 8:36-37>:As it is written: For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
<Eph 1:3>: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.