One of the reasons why Christendom is in a free fall of decay and insignificance is its lack of passion for the Glory of God and the advancement of His Kingdom. Today’s postmodern church, (dare I say post Christian church), embraces mediocrity. Not only does the postmodern church embrace mediocrity it glorifies it as a proof of regeneration.
There is a vast distinction between striving and arriving. The modern gospel, which is actually not the True Gospel, preaches a message that lulls its hearers into a false sense of security. Instead of driving the people of God so that they “press forth” the Crown Rights of King Jesus, they are told that once they “arrive” at salvation the work of God and the work for God is complete. All that is needed now is to be a ‘good little boy or girl’ and wait for Jesus to take you to heaven, or rapture you out of the mess which Adam created. This is not the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Gospel of the Kingdom is intended to disciple more than just individuals, its intention is for the disciplining of the nations!
Striving v. Arriving
Striving and arriving are distinct. Striving moves an individual toward a goal with passion, enduring whatever difficulties it faces with resolve in order to get the job done. And yet, even when that goal is achieved, the striving for greater advances continues. Those who are satisfied with arriving at a specific goal never advance any further. However, if that goal is mediocre, then that person comforts him or herself with a less desirable end.
Striving while Content
Biblical satisfaction and contentment is only achieved whenever a God glorifying, kingdom advancing goal is met by those who strive for the high calling of God. Once a goal is met, and a certain end is accomplished, unlike those that are simply waiting to arrive at an intended end, the striver – fueled by the Zeal of the LORD – sets his or her sights on advancing another Gospel agenda with another Gospel kingdom advancing goal. Those who simply want to arrive never see past what they have originally desired. For these individuals there is no zealous striving for the advancement of God’s Kingdom work. Their desire ends with their own individual pilgrimage as sanctified individuals. The Gospel of the kingdom becomes the Gospel of the self. Individual sanctification is only the beginning of a full orbed Christianity since the intention of Gospel preaching is universal transforming every institution of human civilization to conform to the Word of God.
The Apostle Paul was passionate about Kingdom work simply because he had the fire of the Spirit at work in his heart and mind. He told the church at Philippi,
“I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 15 ¶ Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded…” Phil 3:14-15a
Note how he encourages the Philippians to be “Thus Minded”. In other words, he wanted them to strive for the high Calling of God. Mediocrity for the Apostle was anathema.
A Goal for Personal Excellence
Christian’s can never be content with mediocrity; not with themselves and not with the world around them. That which “is”, is not always what “ought” to be. Maturity in the faith has no arrival date. Christians should always be striving to grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord. Yet, too many Christians think simply because they know some Bible, they can sit back and no longer search the Scriptures as to their global duty for the Kingdom’s advance. The striving believer’s passion has visible results both in their person and in their interaction in the world. A real passion for the things of God is evident and they are measurable.
A Goal of Dominion Advancement
One of the results of the striving believer goes beyond personal sanctification. The striving saint seeks to press forward the Kingdom of God through the declaration of the Truth of God so as to impact every element of civilization and upon every institution known to man. The complete Christian does not sequester his or her faith in some truncated pietism but goes far beyond individual sanctification bringing the Word of God to bare upon all of mankind. The fact that the Christian is armed with the armor of God indicates that warfare is imminent and therefore required.
A Comprehensive Faith
Pietistic mediocrity has all but stripped the Christian church of its power. Once the power and influence of the Church is removed from the theater of the nation, destruction is looming just over the horizon. Mediocrity is death.
A Renewed Passion for Christ’s Kingdom Has Measurable Results
The Gospel is the power of God. Its faithful declaration brings results. Therefore, when that power is faithfully and without compromise unleashed upon the world things change. People change. Nations Change. The institutions of the world are then reformed and reconstructed along Biblical lines. Once the Gospel is properly applied to every area of life comprehensively, and without apology, hope is restored and societal righteousness becomes a reality. There is always a visible consequence to passion. For those that understand the total ramification of the Great commission they will strive to achieve sanctifying results both within their own lives and in the world around them. All others will fade away into history swallowed up in mediocrity and their manufactured Gospel of global indifference.