“’Affiliated’ or ‘All In’ members”

Living my Life in Remembrance
31st Mar 2021
Confirmation Service
23rd Apr 2021

Dear HTC Family and friends,

There is no doubt that the Body of Christ worldwide is going through a season of sifting.  There is no doubt in my mind that the Lord Jesus, by His Holy Spirit, is using the impact of the Covid-19 virus epidemic and its effect on the world, to check on the readiness of His Bride- the Body of Christ & indeed all believers worldwide.  I believe Jesus is allowing this season of sifting for all Christians, to ask us some key questions: Have you lost your first love for Me?  Are you still fully committed to me and to my kingdom cause? Are you an ‘all-in’ member of my Body, or have you become merely an affiliated member?  As to my kingdom cause, are you ‘in the game’ or are you merely a spectator?

In Revelation 3:15-16, we see Jesus warning Christians about the danger of being ‘spectator’ Christians and ‘affiliated’ Christians: ‘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.’  Jesus desires for His followers, to be ‘all in’ and to be fully committed to Him.  Most believers are comfortable with Jesus being their Savior, but not so comfortable with Jesus being their Lord, because it means letting Jesus have all of us and giving Him every part of our life.  As a child I was taught: ‘If Jesus is not Lord of all, then He is not Lord at all’.

Sadly the evil one has sought to use the Covid-19 virus epidemic to lure Christians into the trap of trying to fit Jesus into the rhythm of their lives, thereby sidestepping Jesus’ call to all believers to build their lives around Jesus and the rhythm of His kingdom.  The evil one has deceived many believers into believing the lie that Jesus can be “fitted” into their lives, and that Jesus can be confined to a manageable compartment in their lives.

Jesus call to all believers is to ‘all in’ membership in His kingdom.  There is no scope for ‘affiliated’ membership.  Listen to Jesus words: “not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord’, will enter the kingdom of heaven but only the one who does the will of my Father in Heaven.” (Matthew 7:21).  Admiring Jesus and talking-the-talk of Jesus is not what Jesus is calling us to.  He desires that we be transformed into His likeness and become more and more like Him.  He desires that we walk His walk and give ourselves fully to His service: “Jesus said, ‘whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.’” (Luke 9:23)

If we accept that Jesus’ call to believers is to ‘all in’ commitment, then we need to realize that we cannot be ‘all in’ outside of the Body of Christ, His Church.  It is the Body of Christ that keeps the Word of God before us; it is the Body of Christ that encourages us to be true to Jesus and His call on our lives; it is the Body of Christ that keeps us accountable to our call; it is the Body of Christ that equips us and empowers us to serve Jesus in the world; and it is as a part of the Body of Christ, that we are to serve Jesus (1 Corinthians 12).

This season of sifting will reveal who is ‘all in’ and who isn’t.  Many believers, who are not ‘all in’ will see their love for Jesus will grow cold (Matthew 24:12) and they may fall away.  Don’t be caught out in this season by being a spectator Christian, or an ‘affiliated’ Christian or even an ‘occasional’ Christian; rather choose the ‘all in’ membership in Jesus kingdom, and see yourself growing and maturing in this season.  As the writer to the Hebrews reminds us: ‘but we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith, and are saved.’ (Hebrews 10:39).

Bless you all

David

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