When is Worship Vain?
On several occasions Jesus urged the necessity of walking in all known truth. "If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin" (John 15:22). "If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth" (John 9:41).When a man learns a point of truth in the Bible and refuses to obey it, he is guilty of practicing sin. Such a man is fighting the Holy Spirit whose primary work is to guide into all truth. This refusal to obey hardens the conscience, causing the Holy Spirit to finally withdraw and leads to the unpardonable sin. No wonder such worship is vain. By rejecting the commandments of God in favor of human traditions, the Holy Spirit is spurned. According to Acts 5:32 only those who obey are eligible to be filled with the Spirit.
Let us pause now and consider the profound significance of what we have discovered. The vast majority of people will be lost, including many who work miracles in Christ's name, worship Him, and claim to know Him as His children. The reason they will be lost is that they do not love Him enough to keep all of His commandments. For some reason these ardent church workers have learned to look lightly upon the law of God. Most of them consider it legalism to believe that disobedience could keep them out of heaven. Satan has blinded their eyes to the beautiful, intimate relationship of love and obedience. Millions of Protestant Christians have actually been taught that their obedience or disobedience can have no effect whatever upon their ultimate salvation.
In view of the deep-rooted tradition of popular Christianity today, we can see how Satan has manipulated millions into a state of mind to reject the claims of God's moral law. Under the twisted interpretation of a cheap grace (someone has called it "sloppy agape") the stage has been set for the devil's master strategy of deception. The final contest between truth and error will revolve around the basic issue of loyalty or disloyalty, obedience or disobedience. And the focus will be squarely on the fourth commandment which contains the great distinctive sign of God's creative power and authority.
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