”And if the servant shall plainly say, I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free: Then his master shall bring him unto the judges; he shall also bring him to the door, or unto the door post; and his master shall bore his ear through with an aul; and he shall serve him for ever.” [Ex. 21:5-6]
There are several kinds of people called Christians in this world: Still Born, Christians of the Pierced Nose, and Christians of the Pierced Ear.
First, there are those who take the name because of an emotional or intellectual experience, but have never gotten a new heart. There is no change in lifestyle because there is no new birth. They are Still Born or born dead. They are Christians in name only.
Second, we have what we could call the Christian of the Pierced Nose. Like a bull with a nose ring,
he is led wherever his emotions, desires, or temperament takes him.
There is no real maturity. These, like the Israelites in the
wilderness, are the babies in the Kingdom of God. Whenever they don’t
get what they want they stamp their feet or cry. You have to be very
careful what you say for they are easily offended. These are the people
who argue about minor points, move from church to church, or cause
church splits. If they happen to be in positions of power, they try to
manipulate or force everyone to their way of doing things. They may
actually be afraid of new people coming into the church because it will
change the way things are.
Just as in the natural, we all pass through the baby stage - some quickly, others slower. Still the key is: we pass through. There is a serious problem if someone has been a Christian for 10...20...30 years or more and is still in the baby stage. Something is seriously wrong with their growth and their relationship with God...even if they act “super spiritual.” [Jesus pointed out that nobody is heard because of long prayers or other outwardly “spiritual” actions or experiences but because of the attitude of the heart.] They acknowledge Jesus as Saviour, but pay only lip service to His Lordship. The person who really knows God grows to maturity.
Third, we have the desire of God’s heart. We could call this Christian, the Christian of the Pierced Ear. The pierced ear was a sign of voluntary, permanent slavehood. These people loved their master and had chosen to serve him forever. They could never be set free.
God is searching for those among His people who will love Him enough to have the pierced ear [spiritually, of course]. He is looking for those who will say, “Not my will, but Thine be done.” He wants a voluntary surrender to His ways. These Christians of the Pierced Ear are 100% committed to the Lordship of Jesus Christ in every area of life. They may stumble, they may fail, but they get up and keep on going. The smile of God is on their lives even through the tough and discouraging times. They are the people who are pressing on to maturity. They are leaving childish things behind for the prize. They will be the winners...and they will be the ones God uses to shake the earth.
Satan has no hope of deterring Christians of the Pierced Ear, but he will try to misdirect them. He tries to feed them misinformation so that their lives loose the impact God wants them to have. Whether we like to admit it or not, all of us have been influenced by humanism in our thinking. It is only as we study the Word of God with an open mind that we can expose the areas of misinformation in our lives.
One reason I wrote Master Life is to expose the lie that the Law doesn’t apply today. We have to understand the balanced relationship between Law and Grace. [Master Life hopefully explained that the Law does have applications today but it isn’t until Biblical Law that we begin to look at the details of how it applies in specific situations.] We need to be constantly studying the Word of God to see that our life is based on Truth not on misinformation. Our heart can be right but our practical experience can fall short. Do we know how God expects us to treat our spouse? our children? our employer? Does our country take priority over the Kingdom of God? How should our money be spent? Should we be involved in community projects? which ones? Should we stand for or against capital punishment? abortion? gun control? tariffs? immigration? the draft? censorship? public schools? separation of Church and State? What about buying a new house? a new car? a vacation? The Word of God deals with all these subjects and every subject of life. Christians of the Pierced Ear will search out God’s answers and then order their lives accordingly whether they personally like the answer or not.
you think I am pressing things a bit consider the statistics of noted
researcher George Barna. He defined a Biblical World View as believing
in: 1] absolute moral truth,
2] that such moral truth is based on the Bible,
3] the accuracy of biblical teaching,
4] the sinless nature of Jesus,
5] the literal existence of Satan,
6] the omnipotence and omniscience of God,
7] salvation by grace alone, and
8] the personal responsibility to evangelize.
[Personally I would say this is only the “bare bones” of a Christian world view.] He found that only 9% of born again Christians and only 51% of Protestant ministers believed in all the above points. [He also found that only 45% of ministers who were seminary graduates had a Christian world view compared to 59% of those who had not attended seminary. What are we teaching?] It would appear that the North American church really is the Church of Pierced Nose instead of the Church of the Pierced Ear! But God will change things one person at a time. Let it start with you and I.