Contradictory Christian Characteristics

Contradictory Christian Characteristics


Bible based preaching, teaching and personal study help Christians to come to a deeper understanding of who we are in Jesus. And as we grow in that understanding, we also more clearly establish who we aren’t. The testimony of who we are and aren’t is revealed by how we live our lives. God sees what’s going on in our hearts and minds. God and people see what we say and do.

As followers of Jesus Christ, we have a very special:

Heritage
  • Hebrews 11:13-14 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. 14 For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland.
    • Christians are the spiritual descendants of Abraham (Galatians 3:29) and share in the traditions of Godliness demonstrated by those champions of faith found in Hebrews chapter 11.
Birthright
  • Romans 8:16-17 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.
    • Christians have been adopted into God’s family (Galatians 4:4-5). We are joint heirs with Christ!
Calling
  • Philippians 1:27 Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel,
    • Christians are to conduct themselves in ways that honor God and reflect His character (Ephesians 5:1-2).

As Children in God’s family, as Soldiers in God’s army, as Ambassadors of God’s Kingdom, and as Conveyers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ: we should not esteem, emulate or embody characteristics that contradict with what the Bible teaches about how Christians are to live. In 2 Timothy chapter 1, Paul helps us to see some of who we are and aren’t.

Each of the following descriptions is an oxymoron!


Isolated Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:3-5 I thank God, whom I serve with a pure conscience, as my forefathers did, as without ceasing I remember you in my prayers night and day, 4 greatly desiring to see you, being mindful of your tears, that I may be filled with joy, 5 when I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.
    • Followers of Jesus should never feel or be detached. Whether you come from a long line of Christians or are the first in your family to believe, you are now part of the Church of Jesus Christ – you have an enormous church family that loves you.

Apathetic Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:6 Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.
    • God has given us gifts for the benefit of the church, the salvation of the lost, and the glory of His name. We should never show indifference towards the gifts He has given us or how we use them.

Unruly Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
    • A Christian’s life should be marked by discipline and order; not a boring life, but controlled and honoring to our Heavenly Father.

Incognito Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God,
    • We are pilgrims in a foreign land – we should never blend in or be invisible. We should confidently face our struggles together.

Dispensable Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:9 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
    • God has purposes for our lives. We are part of His eternal plan! We didn’t earn or deserve to be used by Him; He just loves us that much.

Lukewarm Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:12 For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.
    • Those who have surrendered to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and committed their lives to follow, serve and obey Him should never be halfhearted about how they live.

Empty Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:14 That good thing which was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.
    • Since we value what God has done, is dong and will do in and through our lives, we diligently preserve it by seeking Him daily, obeying Him promptly, trusting Him completely, loving Him fervently…

Selfish Christian
  • 2 Timothy 1:16-17 The Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain; 17 but when he arrived in Rome, he sought me out very zealously and found me.
    • Sharing the love of Jesus with others is always important and often inconvenient. When we put other’s needs above our own, we are following Christ’s example.


In what areas of your life are you exhibiting
Contradictory Christian Characteristics?


Don’t be an oxymoron when it comes to
Living out your testimony for Jesus Christ!


Prayer

Father, please keep me from being an oxymoron when it comes to my life as Your saint, servant and slave. As You already know, I fall short in many areas. But, over time I see the changes You are making in my life and how my desire to honor You grows deeper and stronger. Please work in the lives of all who love You to help us better model the example of Christ. I offer this prayer in the name of my Savior Jesus. Amen.