Me-Christianity

There comes a point in every genuine Christian’s life when this reality hits them:

“It’s not about me.”

Sadly, many people live out a “Christianity” that is about them. They read their Bibles to see how it benefits them. They go to church to personally experience the joys of singing and fellowshipping with others. They give money to the church and Christian organizations because of the personal feeling of worth and pride they receive from it. And they participate in many “Christian things” because they enjoy the positive, safe, and family-oriented environment the North American Christian culture provides.

Now, most of those feelings aren’t wrong (in fact, we should encourage the joys that come when we do church activities!). They’re only wrong when your personal gratification from doing them is the sole purpose of your participation.

If all you think of when you think about Christianity, and if all you say when in Christian conversations, and if all you do regarding Christian things is centred on you and your benefit, then there might be a slight problem.

The problem is that God never intended our faith to be centred on us. So when we do centre our faith on ourselves, we’re missing the point.

Have you ever been in a conversation with people and what they’re saying is going way over your head, but you pretend to know what’s going on? Imagine if they turned their eyes on you and asked, “What do you think?” Undoubtedly, you’d probably make a fool of yourself if you spoke up. Well, Christians who go their whole life thinking that Christianity is about them are like those stuck in that situation – except they’re not even aware of it.

God-Christianity

Here’s the startling fact: Our faith isn’t ultimately about ourselves, but ultimately about God.

Consider the opening lines of Paul’s letter to the church in Rome in the 1st century:

“Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures, concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations.” (Romans 1:1-5)

In summary, Paul’s saying that God’s gospel is about Jesus – the fully God and fully human Son of God – who has been resurrected from the dead and appointed as Lord. So, what have we gained from Jesus? Paul says we’ve received grace and apostleship through Him. That’s really good news! Paul goes on to say that this grace and apostleship we’ve received is for the purpose of making us into genuine Christians – or you could say, disciples. A genuine Christian/disciple is someone who professes faith in Jesus and strives to live obediently according to that faith.

Now, for many, that’s where it ends. But we can’t miss that last point. All of what was just stated is “for the sake of his name.”

This is a much greater study than we have time for, but it’s one of many statements in the Bible[1] that hint at the fact that Christianity is not about us, but about God and His glory.

As a final thought, consider all the benefits you may receive from your Christianity. Much of that is God’s grace on your life. That grace doesn’t end with impacting you, but ultimately ends in God and His glory.

Christianity is not about you, but about Him. It’s all for the sake of His name.

 


[1] Is 43:6-7, 48:9-11, 49:3; Jer 13:11; John 7:18; Eph 1:4-6,12,14; and many more.