How Do We Measure Spiritual Faithfulness?

     A few years ago I visited with a church on Wednesday night.  The attendance on that Wednesday night was 96.  The prior Sunday morning the attendance was 98.  I was telling a friend of mine about the events of the visit.  His response was, “Wow what a strong church!”  No doubt this was an unusual church.  My question is, “How do we measure spiritual strength?”

     Today’s  thought process often centers spiritual strength on things  we can evaluate.  As men we want to be able to evaluate in terms we can measure.  How many attend on Sunday Morning?  How much is the weekly contribution?  How many were brought to Jesus this past year?  On and on we go with questions as we seek to measure spiritual strength in physical terms.

     In times past we have determined faithfulness in these terms.  A faithful Christian attends the assembly of the saints three times each week.  A faithful Christian lives a good moral life.  Good Christians give of their means each week.  Faithful Christians adhere to the unwritten creed.  We continue to ask these type questions.  All these questions are physical measurements in the lives of our fellow man.  Are physical measurements adequate to determine the spiritual faithfulness or strength of a fellow Christian? 

     Obviously we cannot measure spirituality in physical terms.  Only God can view the heart.  Maybe we view spiritual strength inappropriately.  Is spiritual strength measured by physical attributes?  Let me share  some things for your consideration.  

     We are very familiar with the Jews of the Old Testament.  Their religion was built around the keeping of rules.  They were comfortable with  rule keeping.  Keeping rules is something we can measure.  Either you keep the rules as they are given or you don’t.  Man has grown comfortable with the idea of judging the keeping of rules.  When Christ established His new covenant with man many attempted to continue the keeping of rules as a means of determining if we were doing enough to please God.  The Galatians as well as others had this problem.   Did Jesus die to establish an improved version of Moses Law?  If  He did then we can continue to measure spiritual strength by how well we understand and keep the rules.   If Jesus death brought only an improved version of law, then my salvation is tied to a perfect intellectual understanding and physical adherence to this new set of rules.  If I miss in one point I have failed in all.

    Jesus did not die to establish a better set of rules.  Jesus died that we might be reconciled to God.  Jesus death allows us  opportunity to re-establish  relationship with the Lord.   There are big differences in the covenant of grace and what man had in Moses law.  Under Moses law man worked so that he might obtain God’s favor.  Today under grace, we do good works because God has already declared us righteous.  Under the old if we missed in one point we were guilty of the entire law.  Today if we miss the mark, grace covers because of the relationship we enjoy as a child of God. 

     If Christ had died to establish a better set of rules, my salvation would depend on my intellectual ability to perfectly understand and physically apply these rules. Under that circumstance my salvation rests squarely on my shoulders alone.  Jesus death was not to establish a superior law.  Christ died to re-establish relationship.  Perhaps we are  uncomfortable with grace because we can’t measure or judge relationship.


One Response to How Do We Measure Spiritual Faithfulness?

  1. womanofworship says:

    Its hard to measure spiritual faithfulness now a days cause some people come to church for the wrong reason but we need to just try to look the example of Jesus and his disciples for being faithful. I do go to church and I have been faithful for years not missing a service and being faithful to the ministry but most people don’t look at that they look at the negative instead of looking at the positive things that people have done in the church or service now a days and that does disturb me at times.
    be blessed

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