We’re either for God or against Him. We’re either gathering or scattering. We either treat God as the holy God He is or have a flippant attitude toward God and sin. We’re either progressing or regressing in our walk with Christ. We’re deceiving ourselves if we think there’s a middle plateau for the unserious Christian. Did I just use those two words together—unserious and Christian?
In Acts, we’ll see this week that a major persecution of the Church begins after the stoning of Stephen, and the Church scatters from Jerusalem to neighboring areas and beyond to escape the onslaught. One of those places was Antioch (in modern-day Turkey), and it was in Antioch where the believers were first derisively called Christians. Obviously, these believers were anything but unserious back in that day of persecution, yet in our modern context, Christianity is coupled with so much lack of sobriety that the early church possibly wouldn’t recognize many claimants to be their brothers or sisters in Christ.
As you read this week about Nadab and Abihu (Leviticus 10) and complainers and faith-slackers (Numbers 11-14) and then read about serious believers (Acts 8-14), examine your life. Is your Christianity marked by grace and holiness? Is your faith alive and working? Maybe you’ve become distracted by the cares of or your love for the world. If that’s the case, isn’t it time to get serious and do an about-face?
This week you’ll read…
LEVITICUS 8-14: Nadab and Abihu were the elder sons of Aaron, the high priest. As such, they were priests as well but had more limited roles than Aaron. God killed them with fire after they offered strange fire to Him. If you want to read more about the “strange fire” incident, click the link below.
NUMBERS 8-14: Moses deals with complainers and unbelief as they near the Promised Land. Keep this verse in mind for this passage. “Now without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11 CSB).
PSALMS 34-36: “Taste and see that the Lord is good. How happy is the person who takes refuge in Him!” (Psalm 34 CSB). “Lord, Your faithful love reaches to heaven, Your faithfulness to the clouds. Your righteousness is like the highest mountains, Your judgments like the deepest sea” (Psalm 36 CSB).
ACTS 8-14: Acts is such an exciting book of the Bible. It’s easy to see why so many people count it a favorite. Events this week include these. Saul persecutes the Church, and it scatters. Philip goes to Samaria to evangelize and later has an encounter with an Ethiopian. Saul has his Damascus Road experience. Peter ministers and brings the gospel to the Gentiles. James, one of the Twelve, is martyred. Peter is imprisoned for preaching Christ and is released by an angel. Paul and Barnabas take their first missionary journey.