Wednesday, December 11, 2013

"It's Free".....Can You Imagine That?

     Have you ever received an invitation to a free dinner if you will listen to a pitch for a time share or an investment opportunity?  We have received dozens but have never taken advantage of this offer.  However, I do know some people who go and enjoy the dinner but never sign up for the opportunity.  They are really only interested in the food.  The bottom line is that there are probably more dinners given away than any sign-ups for a time share.  Such is human nature that we prefer something free without any commitment.
     Jesus experienced this response when He fed the five thousand (John 6:10-11).  The next day many were searching for Him not because He spoke the Words of life but because He fed them.  John 6:26 reads:  "You seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate the loaves and were filled."  Obviously, they were more interested in the food than in everlasting life offered by our Lord. What is even more sad is that Jesus plainly told them in vs 33 that He was "the Bread of God....who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world."  Some believed in Him, but others only came for what they could get.  They did not believe His teaching and "walked with Him no more" (vs. 66).
     Sad isn't it?  People came to see the signs and wonders or have a bite of free food, but they missed the greatest gift of all - eternal life.  Food is only a momentary enjoyment.  It meets an immediate need for energy.  However, what everyone needs is life that will last forever in the presence of God, who alone, can satisfy us.  He is the Bread of Life, and when we feed on Him, our souls will hunger no more.
     Even today, people look for free hand-outs without any commitment on their part.  They are happy to come to an event, but we should not be surprised if they do not stick around when the food or fun stops.  Jesus knew the heart of man and never trusted Himself to them.  He knew that some came for what they could get.  We can have a great praise team, nice building, relaxed dress code in order to stimulate people to come to church.  Initially, this may bring people, but unless God opens their heart and eyes to the Gospel, they will be gone in the same way some of those seeking Jesus for food and signs left His side.  Seeker friendly churches can attract a crowd, but they will not remain unless and until God opens their eyes to see and their hearts to respond.
     Unfortunately, those who leave are missing the greatest free gift of all...salvation through Jesus Christ.  There is nothing we can do, pay, or offer in order to receive the gift of salvation.  God has done all the work.  When we hear His call, we must respond with sincere repentance for our sins and believe in the work of Christ upon the cross.  It is that simple.  I guarantee that no amount of food, toys, games, entertainment or other freebies hold the joy and satisfaction of a life changed by Christ.
I cannot imagine living without Him for even a moment.
     What many fail to recognize is that the Lord is not our personal butler or servant.  We don't call upon Him just when we need something or want something.  Rather, we call upon Him because He gives to us the bread of heaven which will feed us eternally.  The gift of eternal life is free to all who call upon His name to do for them what they cannot do for themselves.  Likewise, as believers, remember that our joy is found in serving Him in obedience.  As we lift Him up, He lifts us up as well.  While we still call it today, lets examine our motives for seeking the Lord.  Do we just want freebies or do we really want to feed on Him?  Feeding on Christ brings eternal satisfaction.  Selah!

No comments: