Recently, I had a pastor elude that he can tell who is “walking with the Lord”? So I began to think to myself that in the church there seem to be a lot of people who think the same thing. A couple of questions I have then are…How can you tell? Are we suppose to make that judgement?
Question #1. How can you tell when someone is walking with the Lord? Do they look like Moses after he came down from Mount Sinai with his face shining with the glory of God? Do they walk on water, feed 5,000, turn water into wine (that certainly would save me money)? Maybe they heal the sick , raise the dead, part seas, or make the sun standstill? I suppose if they did those things that would be a pretty good indication that they were skipping down the golden streets arm in arm with Jesus. But no one is doing that. So what measures do we use? I think sadly, that most of us and most churches use church doctrine or our own understanding to make that determination.
Self confession time….
For more than half of my Christian life I had look through the cloudy lens of my own limited knowledge of the Christian faith to label people. Did they read the “right Bible version?”, Did they go to the “right church?” Did they swear, drink, smoke, read their Bible, vote for the “right political party”, hold to the correct interpretation of creation, the end times, and a multitude of other doctrinal ideologies? I mocked, dismissed and vilified those that deviated from MY understanding, just like my church unknowingly taught me.
And I was wrong, I WAS WRONG!
There is amazing diversity in the body of Christ, beautiful, incredible, diversity. Christianity cannot capture the essence of God in one doctrinal statement, one denomination, one way of understanding His kingdom. And even in this great diversity we cannot completely reflect the mystery and awesomeness of who God is and how great His love and grace are.
Question #2 Is it our place to determine whether or not a person is walking with the Lord? The answer is obvious, and the answer is no! We are not called to look at others and their relationship with God and make a judgement, That is between them and their Creator. We as believers spend far too much time looking at others inside and outside the church and telling them how wrong they are.
Let’s try something else…lets try unconditional love, mercy, forgiveness, and grace. When we are really walking with the Lord we become people of compassion, It is something the world is lacking, it is something the church is lacking.