Summary: We live in an age of convenience. There's nothing wrong with convenience per se. The danger is when we look for a Christianity of convenience rather than sacrifice and commitment. This sermon looks at "convenience Christianity" from several angles.
A Religion of Convenience
April 7, 2013
TEXT: 2 Samuel 24:18-25 – “And Gad came that day to David, and said unto him, Go up, rear an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Araunah the Jebusite. 19 And David, according to the saying of Gad, went up as the LORD commanded. 20 And Araunah looked, and saw the king and his servants coming on toward him: and Araunah went out, and bowed himself before the king on his face upon the ground. 21 And Araunah said, Wherefore is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshingfloor of thee, to build an altar unto the LORD, that the plague may be stayed from the people. 22 And Araunah said unto David, Let my lord the king take and offer up what seemeth good unto him: behold, here be oxen for burnt sacrifice, and threshing instruments and other instruments of the oxen for wood. 23 All these things did Araunah, as a king, give unto the king. And Araunah said unto the king, The LORD thy God accept thee. 24 And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. 25 And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.…”
We live in a day of convenience.
Every time we sit down to eat, we eat in convenience compared to our ancestors.
• Our FOOD is cooked on an electric stove rather than in a big pot over a fire.
• The WATER we drink we get simply by turning on the tap instead of having to run down to the spring and carry up buckets of water.
• Our MILK we buy in a carton from a store instead of having to milk the cow ourselves.
• We simply unwrap a package of BUTTER instead of having to churn it ourselves.
• Our BREAD comes in a package—precooked, sliced and ready to eat—instead of us having to bake it in the oven.
• Our VEGETABLES come, not from our own garden where we tilled and hoed and sweated and worked to have a good harvest. Rather, they come in a CAN that can be opened—not by a manual opener, mind you! No, no, no—but by an ELECTRIC can opener that whizzes around the top of the can, neatly cutting the top of it off. Or we reach into the freezer, pull out a package of vegetables, defrost them in the microwave, and then cook them on the electric stove.
Conveniences—what a blessing! Who would want to have it any other way?
Illus. – One time Susan was in the States for medical reasons and she stayed with some friends of ours named Norman and Saundra. Susan went with Saundra to run some errands:
• First they went to the BANK—through a drive-through window.
• Then they went to the DRY CLEANERS TO PICK UP SOME CLOTHES—again through a drive-through window, without stepping out of their car.
• Next they went to PICK UP A FEW GROCERIES. – Since they only needed a gallon of milk, a cartons of eggs and some soft drinks, they stopped at the Minute Mart and…you guessed it: they drove through a drive-through window!
• The next stop was to DROP OFF SOME PICTURES FOR DEVELOPING. – Guess where?—At a DRIVE-THROUGH PHOTO STORE.
• Then they stopped at the DRUG STORE to pick up a prescription…from a drive-through window!
• Finally, they went to BOJANGLES a fast food chicken restaurant, to pick up some supper. – They drove through the drive-through and picked up some spicy chicken, dirty rice, and hot biscuits and honey (Do I hear and AMEN on that?)
Now think about it: They went out and stopped at six different places, and never had to step out of their car one time! Though it’s not quite like that here in Germany, the idea of convenience is increasingly becoming a universal goal round the globe.
Now don’t get me wrong—There’s nothing wrong with conveniences. Conveniences are wonderful blessings in modern society that make life less harsh; and make life a little bit easier to cope with; and make things a little more comfortable. But if we’re not careful, this can cause a destructive mindset in our spiritual lives.
The reason for this is that usually what is convenient spiritually is either wrong or not positive. The fact of the matter is that in our society we tend to carry our desire for convenience, ease, and comfort into the spiritual realm. We avoid total commitment and dedication because they’re NOT CONVENIENT; they’re NOT EASY; they REQUIRE SACRIFICE.