Summary: My journey in the Christian life brings me to the point of piercing the spiritual shadow and discovering the presence of God. To walk in his presence is the greatest joy associated with the Christian life.
(Song of Solomon 2: 3-3: 16)
The Christian life is the most wonderful and exciting and satisfying life there is but then on the other hand it is also the most frustrating, exhausting and trying life.
This is why religion is so popular today. Religion says if you do this and that and if you do not do this or that then you are all right. You can relax and not have to worry about a thing.
However, living the Christian life has its challenges, but I am afraid few people are willing to take.
Although the Christian life is challenging I would not want to live any other kind of life. I would not want to live religion or anything that goes along with that. I want to be in that relationship with God that each and every day his love and grace is challenged and demonstrated in my life.
Living for God can and often will get you into a lot of trouble. But it is in that trouble that I experience what it really means to follow Jesus Christ.
The major difference between religion and Christianity is the fact that Christianity is based upon a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Religion is just adhering to rituals and rites and rules and regulations. How boring can life really be.
Religion says you do these things and you are okay and you can go out and live life as you please.
Christianity says, commit yourself to Jesus Christ and separate yourself from the world and you will begin to experience the divine blessing of God in your life.
The key verse in this passage for today is 2:9, “My love is like a gazelle or a young deer. See, he is standing behind our wall. He is looking through the windows, through the wood cross pieces.”
We go back see the connection with 2:3, “Like a fruit tree among many trees, so is my loved one among the young men. With much joy I sat down in his shadow. And his fruit was sweet to my taste.”
The great joy of my Christian experience is piercing this spiritual shadow and encountering God in a personal and intimate fashion.
Some are satisfied just with rituals and routines. They think that that is all there is to the Christian experience.
However, here Solomon is suggesting that there is something more to just being a Christian. There is something in the shadow that is drawing me and enticing me.
Theme…My journey in the Christian life brings me to the point of piercing the spiritual shadow and discovering the presence of God. To walk in his presence is the greatest joy associated with the Christian life.
I must admit not many Christians really get to this point. Perhaps some of the trials and tribulations that they are going through stymie their Christian experience and they slow down. They start strong, but then they Peter out.
The great challenge is to first, be aware of that spiritual shadow and then find how to pierce that shadow and really encounter Jesus Christ. A fellowship that prepares me for heaven.
I am not talking about salvation here, but I am talking about an intimate fellowship with Jesus Christ that lifts me up above all of the elements of the world around me.
Several things are necessary as I look at this. I need to incorporate into my life these aspects in order for me to adequately pierce that spiritual shadow.
I. Understand What It Really Means to Be a Christian.
It is amazing how many people who claim to be Christians really do not understand the dimensions of the Christian life. For many it is simply accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior and then have the hope that when we die, we are going to go zooming off into heaven.
But there is so much more to being a Christian than this. I need to penetrate this whole idea of what it means to be a Christian and see the great difference that Jesus Christ makes in my life.
To understand what it really means to be a Christian I need to commit myself first of all to Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior.
That is the foundation for everything that is going to happen in my life from here on. It is what David said, “If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Psalm 11:3).
Becoming a Christian is the foundation but it is not the building. Moreover, what I build on this foundation defines my relationship with Jesus Christ.
Second, if I am going to understand what it really means to be a Christian I need to separate myself from the world and the world’s values.
Yes, we are in this world. But our values do not come from the world and our life is not being molded by the influences of the world.