“Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” (Col. 3:2-3)
If the things that underlie the cross of Christ seem complex, it is now the time in human redemptive history to unpack the cross and divide its meaning into the various parts that make up the rejection of Jesus Christ…now and in the first-century A.D.
It is very important for the Christian church today to be able to understand the costs and the benefits of Christian discipleship.
Proverbs 3:5-6 reads…”Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
This is worldly unconventional and completely contrary to the self-direction, self-reliance, and autonomous individualism of the modern philosophical worldview of humanism.
Galatians 2:20 reads…”I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
This is worldly unconventional in the extreme.
The new covenant relationship with God as spelled-out in Jeremiah 31:31-34 is as opposite to our culturally modern thinking of naturalism and our post-modern thinking of the relative equality of ideas…as can be.
All new covenant believers knowing God personally…through God-composed journeys of faith…is supernatural to the core and at the same time politically incorrect in its exclusivity regarding true-life experience.
Every word in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Mt. 5-7) is worldly unconventional…creating a philosophically moral paradigm shift in the cultural thinking of the ancient world (see the book God: The Evidence, by Patrick Glynn, Chapter 5 for an excellent discussion of this concept) and setting a high standard for a modern, liberating worldview that is only accessible through the divinely crafted specifications of picking up our cross and following Jesus Christ for the sake of the gospel.
What if…in the very near future…the prophecy of Joel 2:28-29 energizes the widespread preaching of the gospel message that many people…because of worldly conventional thinking…again do not want to hear?
What if people who are stuck in horizontally conventional normalcy…only wanting solutions to worldly conventional problems…creates again a culture-dividing collision between the Holy Spirit inspired salvation, priceless in its eternal impact, contrasted with the horizontally flat, worldly salvation of temporary solutions to our current world problems?
This would again…for many people…set-up a rejection of Jesus Christ for some of the same repeat reasons He was rejected in the first-century.
The unconventionality of a God-composed journey of faith introduces a concept into human experience that is disruptive and divisive at a fundamental level (Mt. 10:34).
The Christian life in the risk-filled zone of faith is a call to a higher level of thinking and living built upon actionable faith and trust in God…to match the example of faith began in the life-script of Abraham and continued in variations-on-a-common-theme in the great men and women of faith recorded throughout the Bible.