Wilderness Christians: THE ABNORMAL CHRISTIAN WILDERNESS (Part 10)
The Abnormal Christian Wilderness
This wilderness life is what this blog series specifically addresses. It is the unbelieving children of Israel turning the eleven-day journey into the 40-year chronic adventure.
Approximately 90-95% of born-again believers live in the type of wilderness, dumped in the desert. They rejoice at being redeemed by the shed blood of the Lamb; but, rarely, if at all, live in regeneration (new birth) of His resurrected life TODAY, drinking His blood for His life. Most are not even aware of it because it has never been taught or rarely experienced on a daily basis by other Christians.
The wilderness Christian is a carnal Christian. He undeniably knows Christ is the only answer to life; but will not enter into the rest of total dependency upon Christ for every moment of every day. He refuses to enter for various reasons – fear, insecurity, pride, control, peer pressure, lack of recognition, etc. He refuses to enter Canaan, and cannot retreat to a life in Egypt (although he still strongly covets Egypt in his mind and in his heart). He permitted God to remove him out of Egypt but never permitted God to remove Egypt out of him.
So what is left? Only the wilderness – with all its dry, barren land, its hot scorching sun, totally lifeless. One living in the wilderness definitely struggles and sweats in his Christian walk 24 hours each day.
The apostle Paul basically calls carnal Christians babies. They are not ready for meat, only milk. Therefore, like a baby, you shove a bottle of milk in his mouth for the carnal Christian to suck on. This will keep his big mouth shut. A carnal Christian naturally then becomes a sucker for the devil – very gullible and never growing up. You become spared from any further crying, complaining, murmuring, and whining. However, sparing is only seasonal, unless he permits the Holy Spirit to begin dealing with his flesh. WHAT A BABY!
A wilderness Christian can be spotted in any crowd, even ten miles away. His Christian walk looks so attractive and impressive; but, he can be easily uncovered because the Holy Spirit reveals the heart.
Listed below are major signs/symptoms that wilderness Christians have. A Christian is truly a wilderness Christian if many of these symptoms persist and/or occur on a consistent basis over time.
- He always brags and boasts about his Christian walk.
- He always looks to be the center of attention.
- He talks too much when he should be listening more.
- He emphasizes spiritual gifts.
- He emphasizes Christian ministry.
- He boasts of the big and great things he does for God.
- He rarely is able to sit quietly for a lengthy period and absorb the Word of God.
- During most upbeat praise and worship songs, he is jumping or dancing in the aisles, clapping his hands wildly and ‘uncontrollably’.
- He has numerous Jesus pins and bumper stickers – proudly displaying them.
- He flees quickly when confronted with the ‘heart truth’ of his wilderness.
- He often searches for anyone who will listen to him speak, instead of first going to the Lord.
- He often states his opinion when not asked for.
- He knows Scripture very well, but becomes abrupt when challenged about total dependency upon Christ to live the Christian life.
- He accepts much credit for service or ministry work performed, even if he had limited participation, if any at all, in its impact.
- He often complains bitterly, frequently having ‘a chip on his shoulder’.
- He remembers and yearns for his unsaved days of Egypt (which should have remained buried in the Red Sea).
- He is extremely sensitive, easily offended, and very impatient.
- He strongly covets, very enviously, another believer’s love, joy, peace, and success in the Lord. He keeps this yearning coveted in his heart.
- He very frequently blames others for his own problems.
- With relentless consistency, he gossips and slanders other believers, truly magnifying their weaknesses, instead of covering them with love.
(Personal Note: If you are becoming angry with me for writing my thoughts in this book, you truly are a wilderness Christian. You have absolutely NO right to be angry with me. I am only writing what the Holy Spirit directs. You need to take your anger, in intimacy, to the Lord. You should be very grateful to the Holy Spirit. Obviously, the Holy Spirit has revealed flesh/sin areas in your life that Jesus wants to free you from. He is revealing your flesh big time; and He totally uproots ALL flesh. I will intercede for you.)
What a life the wilderness Christian has! What a very sad testimony for Christ! How much are you a wilderness Christian? No wonder the wilderness is so sad. No wonder so many wilderness Christians are so dry and dead – dry as the desert and as dead as bones. How can anyone ever rest with these types of symptoms characteristic in his life? He does his best for Jesus 24 hours a day in his own self-effort. These symptoms cause me to recall an accurate statement a brother in Christ exclaimed at one time. He stated that to serve in Christian ministry today you do not need to pass a doctrinal exam, you need to pass a physical exam. Is this not so true today in the majority of Christian churches? How accurate and true his statement is!
The wilderness Christian can be described as if you, as a burnt out believer, have recently purchased a new home with a basement door that has never been opened. All you were advised from the previous owners and tenants was that whatever is behind the door was absolutely worthless. They had never even attempted to open the door. Inches of dust had accumulated over the years. In fact, the key has been lost for many years and no occupant was even the slightest interested in finding it. Your neighbor, whom you have not met yet, has reinforced to the previous occupants the insignificance of the door. You learn also that your neighbor has always resided in his house even prior to when your home was constructed.
You invite him over one afternoon and learn that he often visits; sometimes uninvited. But he has such a peaceful, kind disposition that you can understand how the previous occupants always permitted him entry. He introduces himself as Luc. You observe Luc as a very personable individual, very keen and highly intellectual.
You believe you have a new friend. Over the next few months, you become aware that he often speaks about the locked door in the basement. He sternly, and quite convincingly, indicates of the great, potential danger that must lie behind the door.
Then one day while gardening, you discover a key buried in a pile of dirt you scooped up. (This is actually the awakening of the Holy Spirit for you.) Immediately you ponder if this may be the lost key. You quickly call your neighbor Luc over. Suddenly his disposition changes; a frightening and shocking countenance is displayed. This confuses you. You have never seen him like this. He swiftly attempts to cover his expressions. He suddenly attempts many times to relieve you of the key and throw it away. “It probably is not the key to that door. In fact, I will gladly assist you. Give me the key and I will ensure you never find it again. Remember the danger that lies behind the door.” “No” you say. “What is the big deal? If it is, I am very interested and determined to uncover what is behind the door.”
Luc aggressively attempts to reason with you. He implies you will become like all the previous occupants and move away. You have become his friend and he desires to keep things just as they are. You consider. However, your Christian life has truly been a mess lately; a mess even being born again. You sense you need to be alone with the Lord to sort things out. You advise Luc to please leave because he is becoming angrier. You begin to sense the Holy Spirit stirring your heart that something is just not quite right with Luc. You are very pensive about him. What a change in personality he displayed!
Now you are even more confused. You have always attempted to be good-natured and respectful since you became a born-again Christian. But, Luc now only expresses hatred, bitterness, and envy toward you. You attempt to shake it off but cannot; Luc’s thoughts and actions are now becoming more oppressive on your mind. You have to call on God for help to clear your mind. You know God always loves you and comes to your aid despite your burnt out Christian walk. You turn back to the Lord and meditate on His Word. God tells you to make Luc flee in His Name because Luc is short for Lucifer. Wow! You are taken back in shock. You had permitted the enemy direct access to your own house. How dumb you are! How ignorant and neglectful you had become in your Christian walk! No wonder Luc wanted the door to always remain locked.
Next the Lord impresses the following verse on your heart. Revelation 3:20 – “Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me”. You reflect on this verse for a few moments and realize the Holy Spirit is saying the house is your house and Jesus is knocking at your door. Then a clear thought comes instantly to your mind. “Take the key and open the basement door.” It does not make much sense as your mind struggles with the persistent thoughts to open it or not to open it. Then another thought from the Holy Spirit occurs: The Revelation Scripture relates to the lost key.
Jesus is personally telling you to open the door. You excitingly hurry to do it. What do you believe you will discover? What do you believe was laid away for years and years collecting all dust and cobwebs?
If you (yes, you, the reader) right now, at this very moment, have a pure heart open to the love of God, you will definitely be experiencing the love of God in you and through you. The Holy Spirit will definitely confirm my words. You have finally unlocked the door of your heart.
Yes, brethren, the treasures of the very intimate love God has for you are behind the door; the treasures you have hidden and locked away in your heart for a very, very long time. These treasures have only been collecting dust and cobwebs. These are the hidden treasures of darkness. Isaiah 45:2-7 – “I will go before thee, and make the crooked places straight: I will break in pieces the gates of brass; and cut in sunder the bars of iron: and I will give thee THE TREASURES OF DARKNESS, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the Lord, which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel. For Jacob my servant’s sake, and Israel mine elect, I have even called thee by thy name: I have surnamed thee, though thou hast not known me. I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: that they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things”.
What are these hidden treasures? Contemplate them. Is your burnt out Christian life the type of life Jesus came to provide? Absolutely not. Then what is the true life Jesus came to give? The answer is to continue reading. Press forward to the goal before you. Read on to the next chapter.