Tuesday, March 25, 2014

There Is A Conduct Expected Of A Christian

Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;  Philippians 1:27 

Someone has said, "If I see something that waddles like a duck, quacks like a duck, and swims like a duck - I get the idea that it is a duck." When others look at our life do they get the idea that we are Christians?  Does your lifestyle and habits make it obvious to those around you that Christ lives in your heart?  We often put high expectations on ourselves and other Christians as well.  We are human and imperfect and even though we are saved, we are still sinners.  It is a struggle and we will never be perfect but as Christians we should strive to live a lifestyle that is different from the world. 

In Philippians 1:25-26 Paul speaks of his commitment to the Philippians and helping them in their spiritual walk: Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy in the faith, so that your proud confidence in me may abound in Christ Jesus through my coming to you again.  He wanted spiritual life to be advancing and their joy to be abundant. He wanted to help them be all that they should be and should become as a Christians. He wanted them to grow up in their Christian life and go on in their Christian life.
Beginning in vs.27 (above) Paul speaks of 3 areas of life in which a Christian should be a Christian.
There Is A Conduct Expected Of A Christian! Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ

Our conversation that Paul speaks of is more than our talk. It speaks of our walk. It speaks of our conduct and behavior. It is not what the Christian says, but how he is seen. Paul is saying that there is a certain conduct that is expected of those that are Christians. 

Notice the word "conduct." The word used is a political word. It is a word that is descriptive of a citizen. It was a word that the believers at Philippi would have quickly associated with and understood.  Philippi was a Roman colony. Roman colonies were little bits of Rome that were planted throughout the then known world.  In these colonies, the citizens acted as Romans.  They spoke the language of Rome, wore the dress of Rome, and handled all their affairs as Rome, even though were a long way from Rome.  Paul was saying to them, You know how citizens of Rome live and act like Rome. You are citizens of a heavenly world. You should live and act like citizens of that heavenly world.

Christians are in this world, but are not of this world. We are pilgrims passing through.  Our citizenship is in heaven, therefore the life that we live should be that of a citizen of heaven.  The Church is a colony of heaven on earth and we should live as citizens of that heavenly colony.  There is a standard by which we must measure our life, a heavenly standard.  We, as Christians, should strive to live up to that standard and our lives be a reflection of that standard.

A soldier in the army of Alexander the great was charged with misbehavior. He was brought before Alexander about his conduct. Alexander asked, "What is your name?" With trembling voice, the soldier replied, "My name is Alexander, sir." Again, Alexander the great asked, "What is your name?" Again, the soldier replied, "My name is Alexander, sir." Alexander the great shouted at him, "Then change your name or change your life!"

We should live a life that is befitting and becoming of our name.  As Christians, we should live as Christians.  The world is very aware of all that is associated with that name and they will notice any discrepancies.  With your life, the way you live and handle things every day, the words you say and how you treat people, you are writing the gospel before the world’s eyes.  Will they see an example of the gospel in your conduct?

Scripture to Claim:

Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called... Ephesians 4:1

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