Over the years, I have witnessed many people backslide. Some were people who received great miracles from God. Some were so on fire for God that everything they did revolved around him. And yet others were so gifted they were a force to be reckoned with. Yet, for one reason or another, they strayed from the word of God.
You almost have to wonder what was that breaking point? Was it an unanswered prayer? A reliance on one’s self? An inability to give all their vices over to God? I often wonder, what caused people so in love with Jesus to backslide, and how do I avoid the same fate?
As I was contemplating this very fact, I began to think of King Solomon. The wisest person to ever live. Even he, with all of his wisdom, began to stray from God. The Bible tells us in 1 Kings 11:4 NIV, “As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had been.”
Solomon’s downfall was his love for foreign women. The same women God told Solomon’s people to avoid, but that is a post for another day.
In another part of the Bible, you see a rich young ruler who wanted to know what he must do to gain eternal life. Now, this rich young ruler was not looking for grace; he was looking to obtain eternal life through his own merit.
Knowing his heart, Jesus told him he had to sell everything and give it to the poor. See, it isn’t that Jesus needed his money. He needed him to rely less on himself and more on Jesus. When presented with these decisions, the Bible tells us this Is how the ruler responded, “When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.” Matthew 19:22 NIV
So here we have two examples of men that turned away from God for different reasons. So, what is the common denominator? Although the Bible does not tell us specifically, I believe the common denominator was their decision to rely more on the things of this world than the things of God.
See, when you begin to place things ahead of God, you begin to loose that intimate relationship with him—opening the door for sin in your life. And just like these two examples, we too can be subject to this fate if we do not renew our minds to the things of Christ.
So, I ask you today, where are you in your faith? Are you strong in the Lord? Or, have you fallen away from him?
The great news is, even if you have fallen away, our God is a forgiving god. He will take you back no matter how far you have strayed. The key is to recognize your need to come back to the feet of Jesus and repent.
And, if you are reading this and you are strong in the Lord. Remember, even the wisest man ever was led astray. So guard your mind and heart and renew yourself to the Word.
I pray you give everyone reading this post a desire to stay close to you. Please help them grow closer to you and show them any obstacles that are hindering them. Amen
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