Some time ago I preached a sermon called “All or Some.” It was about God wanting “all” of us and not just “some” of us. He wants us to seek Him with “all” our heart; “worship Him with “all” our heart; serve Him with “all” of our heart… there were 8 areas that I had discovered God would not settle for “some” but wanted “all.” It seems God is just not into “some.” But we are – as we offer Him “some” because it is simply that much easier and less costly.
The Gospel of the Kingdom costs nothing – but it demands everything. As I have said many times over the past 40+ years of preaching; “If Jesus is not Lord of all, then He is not Lord at all.” This is true because of the meaning of the word “Lord.” And, yet many have not totally surrendered to Him.
Mark Batterson, lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., has written another great book. It is titled “All In.” Because of my recent sermon I was interested to see what he might have to say so I ordered a copy. Batterson writes, “For many years, I thought I was following Jesus. I wasn’t. I had invited Jesus to follow me. I call it inverted Christianity. And it’s a subtle form of selfishness that masquerades as spirituality. That’s when I sold out and bought in. When did we start believing that the gospel is an insurance plan? It’s a daring plan. Jesus did not die just to keep us safe. He died to make us dangerous.”
I couldn’t agree more. We have swallowed a very shallow gospel of salvation when Jesus came preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom. Big difference. We have made the gospel mostly about us – when it is really all about Him. We focus the truths of the Gospel on ourselves instead of seeing the Gospel as the greatest message ever heard and the only hope for humankind and thus becoming focused on others who do not know Jesus. We are safe, secure, and comfortable while billions of people still need to hear the Name of Jesus or they will not be going to heaven when they die.
Heaven and Hell are real – and we need to sell-out to the task the Lord gave to us – to go into all the world and make disciples. This is where our focus must be. This is where we must invest our time, energy and finances. He owns us because He redeemed us (purchased us back) and so He is looking for a return on His investment. It’s time to ‘sell out’ to Him and be about our Father’s business.
I, for one, have no interest in inverted Christianity – and little patience with those who do. I am praying for more patience.