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Battling Spiritual Complacency
What is complacency? The online Oxford Language dictionary describes it as a feeling of smug or uncritical satisfaction with oneself or one's achievements. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as self-satisfaction, especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies. Biblically speaking, this would be a state where a believer reaches a point of contentment in their Christian life where they are satisfied and comfortable, not seeing a need to push on and push through. Or maybe we’re just tired, ready for a break, looking to relax and not have to work so hard at being so serious all the time. But, as Christians, we should be concerned about spiritual lethargy and complacency. There is a real danger when we relax and become comfortable in times of peace and ease and look to times of spiritual highs that we think will carry us on. Join us this week on the Straight Truth Podcast to hear what Dr. Richard Caldwell and Dr. Josh Philpot discuss regarding the danger of spiritual complacency for the Christian. As always, they seek to guide us biblically and encourage us to be faithful in all that we do in our Christian lives.
Dr. Caldwell says that one of the greatest dangers of complacency is that it displeases Christ. We aren’t saved to live for ourselves. We're saved that we would live zealous lives for the Lord, living lives worthy of our calling. Complacency doesn’t honor Christ; it’s sinful. Not only is complacency sinful, but it opens up our lives to other sins. It opens us up to other things because we aren’t alert, we aren’t awake, we aren’t assiduous and living as we should. Dr. Caldwell shares the example of what happened with King David and Bathsheba. David was relaxed and comfortable. He took a break and wasn’t mindful of what pleased God. This can happen to us as well.
Dr. Caldwell shares another, yet very different, example from Scripture. In Revelation 2, we read where the Lord Jesus is giving His evaluation of the church at Ephesus. He commends them for their perseverance and endurance for His name's sake. The Lord finds them doctrinally sound, hardworking, persistent, and diligent in their ongoing work. Yet He has this against them: they've left their first love. Changes have taken place in their hearts, and they’re lacking a devotional aspect in all that they're doing. He tells them to remember from where they have fallen, and repent, and do the deeds they did at first. But if they do not, He is coming and is going to remove their lampstand (that church) out of its place. Their love for Christ had lost its depth and fervency. Their vibrant works of faith had turned into cold orthodoxy. So, says Dr. Caldwell, these are the things that we need to be alert to in our own lives as well. We can be going through all the motions of the Christian life, being persistent as we grow in our knowledge and understanding. We can be hard working, doctrinally sound, heavily involved in ministry work, enduring, and all the rest, but yet be missing the devotional element. The love element isn’t there. This speaks of the seriousness of complacency.
We want to trust the Lord in all the circumstances He’s assigned to us. We want to be found faithful in every season of our lives. There will be times of peace when things seem easier and less demanding. There will be trials and tests, times when things are not easy and maybe even challenging. Often, it is through trials and testing that God uses them to shake us out of our lethargy, getting us out of complacency through uncomfortable things. If we are self-aware and pay attention to ourselves, there will be things that faintly tip us off that we aren’t where we ought to be. We must pay attention and be alert, knowing our past pursuits will not carry us through. We must passionately pursue Christ, loving Him with all our hearts, all of our souls, and all our minds. We must battle at the level of every attitude and every manner of our speech. We need to be quick to repent of our sins. We need to care that our relationships are right with one another. We need to read our Bibles, and we need to pray without ceasing. Prayerlessness is probably one of the first signs that complacency has slipped in. To battle complacency and lethargy, we have to persevere, persevere, persevere, and run the race with all our energy until we hit the finish line.
About The Straight Truth Podcast
The Straight Truth Podcast: Christian Opinions in an Increasingly Secular World. Join Dr. Richard Caldwell, Dr. Josh Philpot, and their guests as they discuss news events, current affairs, and cultural issues from a Biblical point of view. Find the truth at www.straighttruth.net
The Straight Truth Podcast is a weekly opinion show hosted by Dr. Richard Caldwell and Dr. Josh Philpot. Straight Truth is available as an audio podcast on iTunes or as a video podcast through YouTube or Vimeo. The duration of the podcast is approximately 10 minutes. We release new episodes every Thursday.
The topics discussed in the Straight Truth Podcast are current events, matters that challenge traditional Christian values, and questions submitted by audience members. Dr. Caldwell, Dr. Philpot, and their guests seek to answer these questions with Biblical truths and from a Christian conservative point of view. The Holy Bible is the inspired, infallible, and inerrant Word of God; it alone is and will be the basis and authority of
answering any and all questions.
The Straight Truth Podcast is the perfect podcast for those seeking to strengthen their faith, to be informed on how to broach difficult topics with a Christian point of view, to share their faith with unbelieving friends, to challenge the status quo of their own beliefs by viewing them under the lens of the Scriptures, to interpret current news events from a Biblical point of view, and more.
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