Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Monday, April 06, 2009

True Discernment

I am convinced one of the marks of a truly spiritual Christian is one who pursues making wise decisions.

This is particularly evident with the Christian's personal life. I just cannot see how a person can claim to be a follower of Christ and then live a life consistently making boneheaded choices.

I mean those jaw dropping, stupefying, "Darwin Awards" style personal choices.

A person who is truly walking in the Spirit will not be giving thousands of dollars of his hard earned money to a TV charlatan preacher who claims he will pray the 100-fold blessing on him if he does. They're not going to gamble on-line. They make sober, God-honoring decisions about the people they will marry. They're not running up thousands of dollars of credit card debit. (Interesting how one handles finances is a gauge of their decision making ability). They're not led astray by conspiracy theories portending the imminent doom of society so that they move their family out to the backside of Death Valley.

Even worse than making consistently bonehead choices is how they justify these choices by claiming God is directing them.

A spirit-filled man doesn't come home after work to tell his wife, "Honey, I just quit my job as a CPA because I feel God is leading me to pursue a career in Christian music. Yes, I realize I only know three cords for my guitar, but I know this is what God wants me to do."

Sometimes I am staggered by how a good portion of Christians in Red state, evangelical America, who would otherwise reject looking at animal entrails and consulting crystal balls, think you must figure out God's will for your life by deciphering a series of feelings, or signs, or what appears to be serendipitous coincidences. Christians will ready themselves to make potentially life altering decisions (getting married is the biggy) on the same basic criteria as astrology, but they justify such folly because it has merely been sanitized by identifying with Jesus and "steppin' out on faith."

I am of the opinion Christians should be known for sober-mindedness, not being goofy. Worldly people should be known for bad decisions, not Christians. I mean, we have the mind of Christ due to our salvation, right?

I say all this because Dan at Pyromaniacs addressed this subject in two back-to-back book reviews I wish to recommend. I would imagine most of my readers have already seen them because we all travel to similar haunts. But for those who missed them, spend a lunch break giving them a read:

Non Sola Scriptura: The Blackaby View of God's Will - 1

Non Sola Scriptura: The Blackaby View of God's Will - 2

Additionally, I did a series on true Christian spirituality a few years ago, and five of those audio messages were directed at biblical decision making. The entire series can be podcasted, by the way.

How not to determine God's Will

Defining God's Will

Five simple steps for biblical discernment

Biblical decision making

Serving the weaker brother

Exhortations for informing the conscience

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Blogger Greg said...

I was all set to believe you on biblical discernment, but then I prayed about it and a feeling I assumed was God told me to keep investing in TV preachers. I mean, how else will I live my best life now?

1:02 PM, April 06, 2009  
Blogger bugblaster said...

Omenism. We hates it.

1:23 PM, April 06, 2009  
Blogger donsands said...

"..not being goofy."

I was in the goofy realm for a season. I hooked up with Jimmy Swaggert, Copeland, and some others. At the same time I was hearing the Word from MacArthur, Swindoll, Billy Graham, Stanley, Warren Wiersbe, and some others.

I was in a Holiness Full Gospel Holy Ghost Pentecostal country Church for about a year, and then i went Assembly of God, and then i left all that for calvary chapel, and kept going until somehow along the way i bumped into the reformed teachings of Grace, with the amzing in it. Then came RC Sproul, who is such a fine teacher, and i kept going that way, and then found all the reformed blogs, and that has helped as well.

Our Great Shepherd calls His sheep, and we hear Him, and follow Him, becasue He is sovereign, and a loving Shepherd to His beloved sheep.
The Lord truly is my Shepherd, and He leads me.

3:25 PM, April 06, 2009  

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