My dear friend and very talented designer, Kate DiZio joins us for this week’s Word Nerd Wednesday with a strong warning about the dangers of turning away from Christian doctrine and conduct or “apostasy.”
The abandonment or renunciation of a religious or political belief. A falling away.
Apostasy in the Bible
Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
2 Thessalonians 2:1-4
2 Thessalonians outlines that a great falling away must happen before the Lord returns…falling away from the church, from God…from Christianity. Some would argue that this has already begun en masse. Research team Barna has even coined a new method of measuring ‘Post-Christian’ America.
Is America in a State of Apostasy?
Post-Christian America. Let that sink in for a moment.
While some would argue that the falling away of the church is happening before our very eyes, others would say there is a great revival happening – a new generation of believers rising up and redefining the church experience.
None of that really matters, and there’s no real way to measure who is correct. Sure, we should be looking for signs of Christ’s return, but ultimately we cannot predict it. That was actually the reason Paul was writing to the Thessalonians.
Paul had heard the Thessalonians were freaking out. Agitators had convinced them that the tribulation had already begun, and that Christ would soon appear. Unfortunately, instead of making them more diligent, many of them quit their jobs and started relying on others to support them as they waited for Jesus. For as many as were innocently (albeit futilely) waiting, there were those who were just being lazy.
So, today…which are we? Are we watching, waiting, and doing our best to serve as we wait for the Lord? Or have we become idle, non-reactive, or even despondent?Are we watching, waiting, and doing our best to serve as we wait for the Lord? Or have we become idle, non-reactive, or even despondent? @KateDizio #apostasy #wordnerdwednesday Click To Tweet
Do you know I’ve actually heard Christians explain away the need to take care of our planet by saying “The Lord is going to return anyway, so what we do doesn’t matter.”
My dear friend, what we do does matter…and what we don’t do matters just as much.
Protect Against Apostasy
Let us analyze our heart postures today. Are we actively seeking the Lord and obeying the Holy Spirit? Are we loving our brothers and sisters with abandon? Are we actively serving with the gifts the Lord gave us, even in spite of the ever-changing seasons of our lives?
I don’t know about you, but I want to answer yes to all of those questions.
Let us be sure that our questions regarding the coming of Christ keep us desperately seeking His face, lest we unwittingly become part of the falling away.
What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
Linking Up With
For more encouragement please join the discussions on these fabulous blog link ups – Suzanne Eller, Faith On Fire, Susan B. Mead, Faith Filled Friday, Grace and Truth, Faith and Fellowship Friday, Soul Survival, Rah Rah Link Up, Tell His Story, Sitting Among Friends, Testimony Tuesday, Planting Roots, and Fresh Market Friday, Salt and Light, and Becoming Press’s Writer Wednesday, Moments of Hope