Oh Father, may you reawaken the first love we had for Christ when we were rescued from the pit of hell and from having to undergo Your wrath. May our hearts be overwhelmed with Jesus Christ so that there is nothing that will ever be first above Him.
Christ does not want prominence (first among many), He demands that preeminence. He must be the first and only one we worship.
“If a teacher fascinates with his doctrine, his teaching never came from God. The teacher sent from God is the one who clears the way to Jesus and keeps it clear; souls forget altogether about him because the vision of Jesus is the only abiding result. When people are attracted to Jesus Christ through you, see always that you stay on God all the time, and their hearts and affections will never stop at you.
[What] has crippled many a church, many a Sunday School class and Bible class, is that the pastor or teacher has won people to himself, and the result when they leave is enervating sentimentality. The true man or woman of God never leaves that behind, every remembrance of them makes you want to serve God all the more.
So beware of stealing the hearts of the people of God in your mind. (2 Samuel 15:6) If once you get the thought, ‘It is my winsome way of putting it, my presentation of the truth that attracts’—the only name for that is the ugly name of thief, stealing the hearts of the sheep of God who do not know why they stop at you. Keep the mind stayed on God, and I defy anyone’s heart to stop at you, it will always go on to God. The peril comes when we forget that our duty is to present Jesus Christ and never get in the way in thought.”
“We will deal treacherously with the Bible records if we are not soaked in the revelation that God alone is good. We will put the saints on the throne, not God. There is only one unshakeable goodness, and that is God. It takes time to get there because we will cling to things and to people. Those of us who ought to be princes and princesses with God cling to the shows of God’s goodness instead of God Himself. The only influence that is to tell in a servant of God is God. Let people think what they like about you, but be careful that the last thought they get is God. When we have gone from them, there must be no beauty or fascination in us that makes them long for us, the only remembrance left must be, ‘That woman was true to God’, ‘That man was true to God.'”
Martin Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) offers a sobering warning from the grave:
If the West goes down and is defeated, it will be for one reason only: internal rot . . . If we continue to spend our lives in jollification, doing less and less work, demanding more and more money, more and more pleasure and so-called happiness, more and more indulgence of the lusts of the flesh, with a refusal to accept our responsibilities, there is but one inevitable result—complete and abject failure. Why did the Goths and Vandals and other barbarians conquer the ancient Roman Empire? Was it by superior military power? Of course not! Historians know that there is only one answer: the fall of Rome came because of the spirit of indulgence that had invaded the Roman world—the games, the pleasures, the baths. The moral rot that had entered into the heart of the Roman Empire was the cause of Rome’s “decline and fall.” It was not superior power from the outside, but internal rot that was Rome’s ruination. And the really alarming fact today is that we are witnessing a similar declension in this and most other Western countries. This slackness, this indiscipline, the whole outlook and spirit is characteristic of a period of decadence. The pleasure mania, the sports mania, the drink and drug mania have gripped the masses.
Sometimes you can just use a good laugh.
The following video is a great follow-up of the post Woe Unto You.
And this video is a great follow-up to The Idolatry of Celebrity Worship.