Psalm 73:1-3 A Psalm of Asaph. Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart. (2) But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped. (3) For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
In this post, we will look at two other areas in our walk of faith that, if we are not careful, can begin to slip.
WE CAN SLIP IN OUR FAITHFULNESS
Notice the progression of slippage when it comes to our faith. The first place we begin to slip is in our Attitude. Usually this bad attitude it directed at someone else. Maybe it is the preacher who preached on your particular sin that day. Or maybe it was the Sunday School teacher because you did not like the way they taught their lesson. Or maybe it was another church member who looked at you wrong…did not look at you…etc. Maybe your bad attitude is directed at a spouse, or sibling, or school teacher. The bottom line is this: there is nothing worse than a Christian with a bad attitude. It hurts your personal testimony, destroys your relationships, and stops your spiritual growth.
And this bad attitude, if not dealt with quickly and swiftly, will lead to bitterness. Hebrews 12:15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled.
Next, we slip in our Application. When a bad and bitter attitude are left uncheck, we see we become hearers but not doers.
James 1:22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
A lot of people sit in church with their poor attitude and hear lots of helpful teaching and preaching of the Bible, but do nothing about it. And this bad attitude has not only cost them their spiritual vitality, but they are deceived and don’t even know it. Many Christians who were once on fire for the Lord and now just smoldering reminders of the warnings of James 1:22.
Finally, we slip in our Actions. We can become stingy in three diferent areas of our Christian walk:
- Stingy in our Scriptures – Many so-called disgruntled Christians claim to be mad at God when in reality they don’t know anything about Him. They have to stop reading God’s Word because they can no longer handle the conviction. It is easier to stop reading God’s Word and allow your heart and mind to be filled with the world’s trash. All this does, it continue your downward spiral of sin.
- Stingy in our Supplications - Prayer is so important, so vital to our closeness with the Lord, that it is no wonder this is one of the first actions to slip away when we begin to backslide. I can almost guarantee you 100% that when someone has fallen deep into sin or grown cold in their relationship with the Lord, it started the day they stopped reading their Bible and praying with fervency. This is the life-blood of the Christian walk, and we cannot do without it.
- Sting in Services -
- Stop giving our tithes - Malachi 3:8-10 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. (9) Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. (10) Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. Mark it down, when someone has a problem tithing and giving, deep down they have a heart issue with God and this is how it manifest itself.
- Stop giving our time - Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
WE CAN SLIP IN OUR FAMILIES
We must face up to the reality that the American family unit has fallen on really bad times. But why have our families slipped so far? Look at what the Bible teaches about the family in Ephesians 5:21-6:4.
The first truth I want you to notice is that our families slip when the Husbands Don’t Lead. The husband has a two fold responsibility:
- The Husband is to LOVE - In this entire section of Scripture, it is the husband who has the greatest and most difficult responsibility. As tough as some ladies may think it is to submit biblically to your husband, the husbands calling is much more difficult. The husband must first and foremost love his wife just as Jesus loved the church and gave His life for it. A sacrificial love puts your wife first – above your needs, wants, and desires. Loving your wife and your family means you are the one who provides for them – 1 Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
- The Husband is to LEAD - We need to return to the time of men leading the family, and men leading the church. This does not mean that the woman is inferior, but that God has created the sexes with different responsibilities. While it seems that even during the Lord’s earthly ministry that it was the women who were more spiritually sensitive, He still called 12 MEN to lay the foundation of the first church with and to lead it to what it is today – and He has not changed His plan of formula! This business that, “The man is the head, but the wife is the neck that turns the head,” is right out of the pits of Hell! We need men today to spiritually and biblically lead their families.
Secondly, our families slip when the Wives Don’t Heed. It is sad that in today’s day and age that so many women are forced by their weak husbands to take on the role of leadership – but this is not God’s plan and purpose for you. But God help us from strong-willed women who will not submit to the leadership and God-given authority of their husband. You may think this is archaic, but it is as old as the Bible and we cannot improve upon it. The Bible is not telling you to submit to sin, but when your husband makes strides to be a spiritual leader, then love him and support him and DON’T TRY TO SABOTAGE IT.
Finally, notice with me that when the family slips, our Children Won’t Succeed. This new generation is struggling, falling further and further away from God – and it is not all their fault. I believe the brunt of the burden lies on the previous generation and the deterioration of the family. We have tried to tear down and redefine what the nuclear family is, and it is the children that suffer. One of the reasons we see so many children who don’t know how to obey their parents and other authorities is shown to us in our text from Ephesians:
Ephesians 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.If we want our kids to grow up to be successful in the Lord, we must start training, leading, and loving them today in the Lord.
As we put a close to this blog topic, we must remember that we usually don’t notice problems until something completely falls apart – but before we fall, there is always a slow slide first. Has the quality of your fellowship, faith, or family begun to slip? It is time today that we seek the Lord to stop the slide before we completely fall.