Summary: No sin can be more devastating to the church or more deadly to the individual than the sin of indifference. We need to seek Him.
It is Time to Seek Him
I am told that Napoleon's soldiers often used to sleep while they were on the march. They were moving forward, yet asleep and indifferent to everything around them. Thousands are like them in spiritual matters. They are as the old hymn says 'passing onward, quickly passing’ in the journey of life, yet indifferent to their need for a relationship with Christ and to the call and claims of God upon their lives. No sin can be more devastating to the church or more deadly to the individual than the sin of indifference.
I. The Sin of Indifference
A. What exactly is indifference. Indifference is defined as the following:
1. without interest or concern; not caring; apathetic:
2. having no bias, prejudice, or preference; impartial; disinterested
3. neither good nor bad in character or quality; average; routine
B. God charged Israel with the sin of indifference. Time and time again he spoke to them through His prophets but it was like speaking to a stone wall in their indifference to His word.
C. Concerning Israel's failure to hear and seeking God He declared through His prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 45:20 “He sees many things, but does not observe them; his ears are open, but he does not hear.”
D. Isaiah himself cried out about the cold indifference of Israel in Isaiah 53:6 “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”
E. The reality is that we all guilty of indifference to God. Romans 3:11 “there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God.” In Matthew 22 we have the story of the wedding feat where the King (God) invites individuals to the wedding of His Son. In Matthew 22:5 we read “But they made light (were not concerned, ignored, paid no attention) of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business.”
F. They were too busy doing their own thing, too busy with work, too busy with family, too busy with the things of their world, too busy for God.
G. When it comes to the things of God, the will of God, and the call of God, the demands of God, and the worship of God, are you guilty of the sin of indifference? Are you actively pursuing a close knowledge of and intimacy with Christ? Are you seeking the will of God for your life? How much interest do you have for the local gathering of the Body of Christ? When it comes to being active in the church and in serving God do you find it to be a dull routine, a matter of unconcern, or of little interest?
H. Jeremiah 33:31-32 “So they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them; for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain. Indeed you are to them as a very lovely song of one who has a pleasant voice and can play well on an instrument; for they hear your words, but they do not do them.”
I. In contrast to the sin of indifference listen to what the apostle Paul says in Philippians.
J. Philippians 3:8 (AMP) “Yes, furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege (the overwhelming preciousness, the surpassing worth, and supreme advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him [of perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more fully and clearly]. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish (refuse, dregs), in order that I may win (gain) Christ (the Anointed One)
II. The danger of living a life of indifference to God
A. Israel discovered that being indifferent to the Lord and the things of God is a dangerous position in which to be. In ignoring God, profaning His Sabbaths and living lives of apathy to His commands, God brought about the conquest of Israel and their years of captivity and bondage.
B. God will not be ignored. His character, his attributes will not allow it.
C. Hebrews 10:31 “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”
D. Isaiah 42:8 “I am the Lord, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another,”
E. As a result of indifference many have a misconception of the nature of God. Pastor Robert Bagonza has said that, “Indifferent Christians perceive God as lukewarm and don’t believe He will reward them for their diligence or punish them for their slackness.”