July 3, 2021
July 3, 2021
Developing Your Convictions
The older I get, the more I believe in the importance of having strong personal convictions—unshakeable beliefs that you are willing to fight for, to die for, or, more commonly, to stand firm on.
I say that standing firm happens more often because, at least until now, most Christians in America have not had to take civil action, go to prison, or risk death for their faith as so many who have gone before us. I'm well aware that this may change in the days ahead; however, it isn't a common experience for now. Instead, most believers today are called to "stand firm"—to plant themselves like a tree against family, friends, and a society that calls us to be "tolerant." Essentially, they want us to "bend." They implore us to be "flexible" on essential convictions that are immovable.
Among these convictions is the belief that:
There is only One God, and He created the universe.
-All religions are not equal. The only way to achieve salvation and spend eternity in Heaven is by accepting Jesus as your personal Savior and repenting of your sin.
-Even though grace is free, Christians are called to live in a way that pleases God.
-The belief that the Bible is the infallible Word of God.
-The conviction that the Bible is still relevant and applicable today. We still need to obey what it says.
-The belief that if the Bible calls something "sin," it is "sin," no matter what society says. This includes so many of the prevalent sins that our world now glorifies as normal, socially acceptable, and modern.
As twenty-first century believers, these convictions are frequently coming under attack. Still, they are areas where we cannot compromise but must, "Plant ourselves like a tree and say, 'I'm not moving.'"
Of course, these are the obvious points. The less obvious and often more difficult situations to face are the real-life circumstances where it is easier to compromise our personal beliefs than take a stand. It's the areas where our thoughts tell us, "It's no big deal—it isn't life or death—just a little compromise will make your life so much easier" that tends to trip us up.
These are the times we ask ourselves, "Am I a man who is guided by his convictions, or do I flounder and abandon my convictions when the going gets tough?"
Memory Verse: Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. (1 Corinthians 16:13, NIV)
New International Version (NIV)
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