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IN TOUCH WITH GOD   by Edward Heppenstall

Found by God JANUARY 13


Pilate saith unto them, What shall 1 do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified . . . . His blood be on us, and on our children. Matt. 27:22-25.

Christ never allows us to be neutral. In the first century it was Christ or Caesar. To offer or not to offer incense to the Emperor of Rome was fraught with the most terrible consequences. In most Eastern countries the Mohammedan who decides to follow Christ knows he must do so at the price of being cast out by his family, that the funeral rites will be performed for him as for one already dead.

We must decide either to take the kingdom of God seriously or casually. This unqualified rule of God in our hearts Christ took seriously. He wanted no disciple who would not accept this. The neutral attitude that keeps to a few moral platitudes by way of concession can be the most corrupting factor in life. It brings confusion into the cause of God.

"But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end" (Matt. 26:58). At that crucial point Peter did not want to be identified with Jesus. That kind of discipleship is cowardly and weak. There is no place in Christian living for a half-and-half commitment. Feebleness of devotion is utterly inconsistent with the Christian faith. To choose Christ and to follow Him means such thoroughness of spirit, loftiness of life, and beauty of character, that anything like mediocrity is intolerable.

In his denials of Christ, Peter started out by saying he did not know what the girl was saying to him. He ended up by saying of Christ, "I do not know the man." Cowardice, hesitancy when the chips are down, takes us down this road. The master stroke of Satan is to detach us from Christ and get us to accept some form of compromise. The devil cuts off the stragglers. Let us shun neutrality and indecision. This is the fatal attitude that makes the triumph of sin and self possible. Fullness of love and devotion to Christ means the highest and the utmost in Christian character. This is the key to our allegiance. No indecisiveness is there.

Nothing has changed since Christ walked the earth. Jesus spelled out what it meant to be a Christian.

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