The danger of being a good fake

IMG_6419Yesterday I got to accompany a couple of second grade classes to Ashby’s Fort.  I think the guide told us it’s the only remaining fort that George Washington ordered built on the “western front”.  Parts of the fort are original and parts have been refurbished.  Some of the logs in the picture to the left are 300 year old original logs and some are not.  The newer ones have had marks put in them to make them appear to be an original log.  Trained eyes can tell the difference.  I would never have known the difference, but the guide showed us what to look for to spot the “fakes”, if you will.

Sometimes a small number of church people get annoyed because I often speak about a difference between people who are literally living lives following Jesus and people who are fakes.  And it’s never a case that I accuse someone of being a fake follower.  I can’t tell.  Some people who look like followers are no doubt fakes.  I guess it is possible for some who look like a fake to be a follower.  One thing is for sure: I’m not the one who decides.  And truly following Jesus doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to do anything drastic like move to a foreign land.  You can be following Him and living for Him staying at your job, in your hometown, in the home you grew up in.  That may be your assignment from Him.  There are no insignificant assignments when you’re being obedient to Jesus.

Yet there are warnings throughout the Bible that people will be deceived into thinking they are following and living for Jesus, when in fact they are not.  The Bible says they are such good fakes that they have themselves fooled!!!!!

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.  On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ ~ Matthew 7:21-23

One of my jobs as a pastor is to warn people not to let the enemy deceive them into believing that “just enough Jesus will do you”.  And since I can’t, nor am I qualified to, spot the fakes, all I can do is encourage you to examine yourselves…. Just as I constantly examine myself.  I would be derelict in my duties as a pastor to not at least let you know that some people are going to be very disappointed and surprised when this life is over.  I sure don’t want to be one of them, nor do I want you to be.

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