Combat Readiness: Beacon on a Hill
For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in this present age.
Titus 2: 11-12
When people look at your life, do they see Jesus? Is your life any different from those who do not profess to have Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior? Are you still gladly partaking in all of the sins that you engaged in before you were saved? Do you struggle with your sin and strive for self-control and mastery over your faults, or have you resigned in those areas of your life?
These are serious questions to ask as a Christian. If our lives are no different from the non-Christians around us, then how are we being effective witnesses?
Jesus tells us in Matthew 5: 14-16, “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”
Christianity is active, and people should be able to witness it moving through your life in your words and deeds. Yes, you will still sin and be tempted every day, but for the Christian, there should be struggling to overcome sin, praying for forgiveness, asking forgiveness from others, and fighting to be a Godlier example.
With that said, we are not supposed to lord our examples over others. Showiness and disdain are far different from living a righteous life and being a Godly example. When you act like this, it tends to turn people away rather than bring them in.
Jesus says in Matthew 6:1, “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.”
The Bible also says in Philippians 2:3-5, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.”
As Christians, we need to make our salvation attractive by our rejection of sin, good deeds, the humility in how we do these deeds, and the joy that these actions bring to our lives. We don’t need to be dancing in the hellfire with our neighbors, but be set apart and “save others by snatching them from the fire” (Jude: 23). We cannot do this if we are joyfully embracing sin, or haughtily showing off our good deeds to others.
Pray today that the Lord will guide you in how to live a life that is both pleasing to him, and is a light on the hill for non-believers.
Joshua Bixler is a Christian, husband, father, and a Sunday School teacher for 5th grade boys. He is a veteran of two combat deployments to Afghanistan, and loves military history. He and his wife enjoy creating tabletop RPG gaming products.