It seems too good to be true, yet the popular Christian today insists it is. “You can be an effective believer for the Lord and have what the world offers (as long as it isn’t sinful).” Might that idea be a major reason why our country is now “post-Christian?” Let’s consider where that propaganda originated by looking at Matthew 16:23 when Jesus said to Peter. “… Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” Notice Satan was credited with what Peter said.
What were the circumstances surrounding what might have been the strongest rebuke delivered by the Lord to Peter, one of His apostles, who would be commanded to go unto all the world making disciples of men? Jesus had just told them (in verse 21) He was going to “suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed.” Then He said in verse 24, “ … If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Suffering was not part of the apostles’ plan. Their hearts were not set on denial of self. Don’t many Christians share a similar mindset?
Maybe Satan has continued influencing Christians by convincing them that they can have the good life with all the entertainment, sports, music, and movies they want as long as those aren’t outright sinful.
Might we have come under the influence of the propaganda being spewed forth that the believer can have both the Lord and the world? Is Satan whispering in our ears: “Sure, spend your time on all these things. Enjoy life while still being a good Christian. Jesus never really meant for you to deny yourself, and take up your cross, and follow Him. Paul really didn’t mean for you to ‘… seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth’ (Col 3:1). You can love the things of this earth and heaven and still be a good Christian.” Satan’s subtle influence continues to proclaim, “Don’t be a narrow-minded Christian. Enjoy life!”
Does that mean we really can’t enjoy life? Continued.