Shallow Christianity

SHALLOWDo you find that your prayer life is a bit mechanical?  Or that you pray only at meals and just before bedtime?

Do you find that you attend Church only on Sundays and that the majority of your Bible reading is done at that Sunday service?

Does your quite time with the Lord last only minutes and is your relationship with Him likened to that of an acquaintance, rather than that of a close friend?

Do you find that there are limits on how far you serve God and that you rarely share your faith out of fear of rejection of your peers?

Do you find that you only want to be saved from the penalty of sin, rather than be cleansed of your sins?

If so, then you just might be…. “A Shallow Christian.”   

Shallow Christianity results whenever we want the benefits, but not the costs of following Jesus. I once heard a story about a pastor of a mega-church who had 28,000 conversions and baptized 9,600 people. Some of us might just say AMEN to that! But the devastating part is that only 123 of these people decided to become members of the church; the other 37,477 were never heard from again. My friends, there is something wrong with this picture!

Dr. Michael Lindsey, a Rice University Sociologist of Religion, puts it this way, “…religion in America is, indeed, 3,000 miles wide and only three inches deep.”  Sadly, I’m forced to agree with Dr. Lindsey. Many American churches have record-breaking attendances on Sunday mornings but few of their people have an authentic relationship with Jesus Christ. These Sunday Christians drink, party, curse, and gamble in moderation, all while still calming the name of Jesus. They speak Christianese, but they look and act like the rest of the world with a little “God-talk” thrown in for good measure. As a result there is a widespread pandemic of shallow, stagnant, lukewarm Christianity, as spoken of in the book of Revelation.

“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation. I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. Revelation 3:14-16

In truth, such Christians are not only lukewarm, but their faith is nonexistent! They have allowed the poison of this world to be injected into their view of “Christianity,” which is a watered down version and nowhere near the real deal!

AUTOThe greatest problem with shallow Christianity is the idea that once they accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, or say the sinners prayer, they can sit back on “auto pilot” and enjoy the ride! This is the source of a great deal of disillusionment that leads to discouragement in the Christian life. It is this kind of thinking that leads Christians into spiritual shallowness and eventually into faithless lives.

We cannot coast along in our Christian lives and attempt to live a life for God on autopilot! We need to break free from that kind of thinking!

If you find that you are a Shallow or Lukewarm Christian, may I suggest that your commitment to Christ isn’t really a true commitment? When you live like the world, with a little God thrown in, then you are walking on sandy ground and your foundation will soon falter. Shallowness does not lead you to God, but away from Him.

The Christian faith is a lot of things, but shallowness is not one of them. Rather, it is a true, deep, meaningful, and life-changing relationship with our Creator and Father God! It is living a sacrificial life not based on what we can get from Jesus, but based on our love for Him. Now is the time to get right with the Lord because tomorrow is neither promised, nor assured. Get right today!

Love you all!

(Also blogged on www.vineoflifenews.com) 

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40 responses to “Shallow Christianity

  1. The “sinner’s prayer”, is more of an incantation to make everything wonderful in your life than it is a commitment and the laying down of your life. Jesus called us to make disciples not converts. The word disciple comes from the following Greek word: Mathēteúō must be distinguished from the verb mathéō (n.f.) or manthánō (G3129) which simply mean to learn without any attachment to the teacher who teaches. Mathēteúō means not only to learn, but to become attached to one’s teacher and to become his follower in doctrine and conduct of life. It is really not sufficient to translate this verb as “learn” but as “making a disciple,” in the NT sense of mathētḗs. The pulpit to pew ministry can never accomplish this because making disciples requires personal involvement and the laying down of one’s life to serve . The most that one can hope for with the pulpit to pew ministry is to make converts.

  2. I found this article very informative. Thank you for posting it. I have found that (I’m speaking from my personal experience), if you practice “Jesus’ love in action” that helps eliminate the shallowness of what you believe.

  3. I tend to view this as a result of the “once saved, always saved” teaching that has been embraced by the majority of evangelical Christians in the last hundred and some years. If your eternal life is totally assured from the moment you “accept Jesus as Savior,” then why worry? If we fix our faith on certain verses and ignore the contraries, then “just have faith,” we can coast right into Judgement Day in full expectation of entering “into the joy of our Lord.”

    There are variations of this: we knew a teen who “spoke in tongues” at some charismatic meeting–at least people told her afterward she had– and by this fruit knew certainly that she was saved. She didn’t really believe that much in Jesus, had no intention of committing her whole life to Him and His teachings, didn’t attend any church, but she had the Holy Spirit.

    I myself “got saved” at Bible Camp when I was eight, and entered my later teens very confused, having no spiritual strength. Thankfully God was good and took steps to “lose me” when I was twenty-one, so that I could come through the right Door the right way, in sincere repentance. But my heart aches for children led astray as I was, confused and finally lost to the churches altogether.

    Someone may have said “Yes, I’ll give my heart to Jesus” as an innocent child, but never entered in through the right door. The sinner’s prayer of total commitment only works for repentant sinners. God only saves those who realize — with the heart, not just the mind — that they are lost and sinful.

    • Which is why you will see alot of people say, “Lord, Lord…” and God will say, “Depart from me I never knew you.” It’s just heartbreaking the way the church is preaching false concepts. In all honesty the ‘once saved, always saved’ lingo is a fairly new teaching for the church, and it is a main reason we have a lukewarm church today.

      Amen to that!

  4. Thank you for this post… very pleased to see so many re-blogs! The more that hear the truth the better. I would like to re-blog this some time in the future.
    Be blessed
    Stephanie

      • I’m in agreement with the idea that folks should leave apostate churches, but this seems to give its own problems. I’ve seen so many people coming out of this and that group/church and finally they end up wandering around alone — or with only their family members — belonging to nothing, submitting to no one. This is not God’s will, either. So I would leave this caution: folks shouldn’t “come out” until they know where they are going. Wait and pray and work for truth until the Lord shows you the next step on your journey.

      • Your right, God says to not forsake the assembling of ourselves together. This means we should be a part of a church family, but not an apostate church. They do more harm than good. About 13 years ago I was a part of a church like that and my spiritual walk pretty much died while attending that church, it wasn’t until I got out that I begin to grow again in the Lord. So I suggest trying other churches continually until you find one, rather than acting defeated and staying at home, like you said, this will do harm, spiritually speaking. If you have to drive for a good church, dive! That’s my motto. And I agree, we have to pray and ask God for the right church and He will give it to us. It may not be the ‘perfect church’ (no church is) and it may not have all the bells and whistles, but it will be a place you know God is present. This is what matters, to be where God is.

  5. Excellent post! It seems (to me) that shallow Christians are Christians in name only. The name “Christian” used to have, and in some parts of the world still has, a stigma attached to it – you paid a price for taking that name; you earned it, many times the price was your life. Today, in North America and Western Europe, the name Christian is virtually meaningless; it’s like saying your Irish or a Yankees fan. I believe a day is coming, probably soon, maybe within 5 years, that people, even in America will begin paying a price to hold onto that name that’s above ALL names! Many, if not most, will drop that name like a hot potato. Then it will be deep Christianity;then we’ll be making disciples!

  6. Fantastic words of truth. In reality, the Bible knows nothing of one being saved and not being changed. It’s an utter impossibility. It would be like saying that Jesus lives a different life in me than He lives in a more sold-out Christian. Where Jesus dwells, a life is transformed into His image, so that the world sees Him and no longer us. Blessings

  7. For me, every day is Sunday, so, yes, I only pray on Sundays! 😀
    However, it’s pretty easy to have so many cares that I just pray without ceasing, and ask others to pray, too. Lately, we’re taking in a teen son of a meth addict, while she goes for faith-based rehab. Scary!!! Pray for us!!! 😯
    Thanks! 🙂

  8. Oh so right, but aren’t we all shallow at times? I think we only really see God at work when we CRY out to Him, the rest of the time we’re so well off in the affluent western world we can all too easily take on the Laodecian profile. Although I’d have throw in a word of warning, we need to beware of throwing stones, only The Lord himself can see the heart. Our duty is to look after our walk, I always love the answer Jesus gave to Peter (John 21:22) – “Follow thou me” – it’s a tough one, but only when we walk his way can there be any “depth” to our walk.

  9. Thanks for making me look inward a bit and question myself. As a Christian struggling with depression at the moment (I’m fighting it with any means God will give me), I find my prayer life is simplified and amplified at the same time. My prayers are shorter, because I lack words, but they are richer, because they are coming out of deep pain, and because I refuse to back down.

    My God is the only one who can sustain me, grow me, heal me, and help me finish this race well – on HIS terms.

    I feel convicted and encouraged by this post. Convicted not to let my guard down (let him who thinks he stands, take heed, lest he fall). Encouraged that it is God who holds me close, and that he is faithful to complete every good work he begins – including the one he began in me.

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