It is in the fallen human nature of man to become extremely skillful in arranging our lives, so as to admit the truth of the Word of God, without being bothered by its implications; we arrange things so that we can get on pretty well without God’s help in our daily lives while ostensibly seeking it; while we are happy to boast in the Lord we make sure that we never get caught depending upon Him. That is carnality and Jeremiah hits the nail on the head; “The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly corrupt: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9).
To many Christians, Christ is little more than an idea or, at best, an ideal, and Christianity more of a philosophy than a faith that binds one to obedience. But any faith that does not command the obedience of the one who professes it is not true faith at all; it is pseudo faith.
For each one of us the time is surely coming when we shall have nothing to rely upon but God; we should hasten to practice now, in this season of preparation, to trust God as completely as we must surely do at the last day. We can do that by inviting God to remove every false trust, to disengage our hearts from all of its secret hiding places and to bring our inner person into the open where we can discover for ourselves the true nature of our “faith”.
This is to set a watch upon our hearts to see what is truly in them.
The early Christians went about daily with their lives in their hands. The test of faith today is not outwardly so terrible, but is more likely to overcome us than the saints of the fiery days of martyrdom and suffering.
Our danger is that we yield to the blandishments of the world, its soft words, its fawning hypocrisy, its cultural imperative that contaminates everything we read, hear and watch. It is more likely that Christians will lose their spiritual integrity in these soft and silken times than in harsher times.
“Blessed is he that watches” (Revelation 16:15). In these deceitful days it is more important than ever before to make sure that we do not dispense with watchfulness and holy ardour.