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You gotta pick one

October 23, 2012

It’s been a good many years ago that I first studied the book of Daniel.  It was the first prophetic book I’d ever really studied, and by the time I’d finished the study, I was no longer intimidated by the idea of studying the book of Revelation.  I figured if I could survive Daniel, I could make it through anything.  And I was right.

I’ve studied Daniel a time or two since that first time, but in different ways.  It’s a great book.  Awesome stories, amazing supernatural happenings, and fascinating prophecies– some of which have been fulfilled, some of which haven’t yet.  My brain doesn’t seem to hold everything I learn for all that long, so each time I return to the book I get to learn it all over again.  And each time it’s all still awesome, amazing, and fascinating.

I’m reading through the book again, courtesy of my church’s daily reading plan.  And it is striking a chord in me and making me return to the topic of yesterday’s blog post.

God is fiercely protective of His kids.  He takes defilement seriously. It is worth holding ourselves to His standards, even when we have no guarantee it will turn out well for us.

Unlike how some Christians think, we don’t become defiled by hanging out with sinners.   Sinners sin because that is their nature, and we shouldn’t be surprised when they act according to their nature.  But we are not sinners.  We are new creations in Christ.  The old is dead and buried; we now have a new nature that is meant to reflect our resurrected Savior.

So it’s a pretty stinky thing when we behave like sinners and permit ourselves to think and talk like sinners.  It defiles our new nature.  When we don’t love…when we fudge with the truth…when we are irresponsible with our resources, gifts, and talents…when we dishonor authority…when we use our words to speak death instead of life…those are all things we’d expect out of someone who didn’t know better, someone still dead in their sin.  Not someone resurrected with Christ…not someone who is a citizen of heaven and a broker of kingdom realities.

Compromise is a deadly opposition to abundant life in Christ.  You can’t have both.

I don’t even know why you’d want to.



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