Disciple or Convert: One’s Name is Found in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
A Truly Amazing Event is Occurring in Iran.
The Iranian Awakening
A feature length film by Frontier Alliance International Studios directed by Dalton Thomas called ‘Sheep Among Wolves Volume II’ has been produced; Thomas calls it ‘the Iranian awakening’. As he states, ‘it owns no property, no buildings, no central leadership and is predominantly led by women.” In speaking to the leader of one such private gathering, the leader (pastoring teacher) made a massively telling observation, one that would fall mostly upon deaf ears here in the West.
“Disciples forsake the world and cling to Jesus 'till he comes. Converts don't. Disciples aren't engaged in a culture war. Converts are. Disciples cherish, obey, and share the Word of God. Converts don't. Disciples choose Jesus over anything and everything else. Converts don't. Converts run when the fire comes. Disciples don't."
The American Heritage Dictionary defines convert and disciple thusly: Convert - A person who has been converted to another belief, religion, etc.; Disciple - One who embraces and assists in spreading the teachings of another. Even the world knows the difference between a disciple and a convert, Christian or not.
The Worldly Love a Crowd ... It Smells of Success.
Welcome to the American Assemblies of Converts: aka Churches.
Being religious is a very attractive alternative to being lonely, considered an outcast or even a reprobate. Most, I did not say all, people would like to be known as a respectable citizen, neighbor, friend or family member. Again, most people have an innate knowledge that there is a God, fear dying and desire to have some form of hope for the future. Voila, being the member or frequent attender of a religious service may appear as an answer sought after. Alas, it is a deception that gives shallow comfort to the many on their way to destruction come judgment day.
What is wrong with being a religious convert?
- Like AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), if you stay on their path you will have victory over your addiction. If you should ever stray from their dictates, you are bound to relapse into your old nature, for one never fully recovers, but is just an alcoholic under control. When one decides to try religion, they find there are fantastic side benefits to their newfound life, such as: a healthier mental state being around and making acquaintances of like-minded people. As there are laws of nature such as gravity which gives most of us the wisdom not to test it, God has provided laws in the spiritual realm. When people are encouraged to do good works, most often good things come of it. When one gives, not to get but to meet a need, there comes a satisfaction and peace that is health to the bones. No one will ever be judged for their good works but without Christ, they are meaningless. There are countless ways to perform good works that truly benefit mankind … but there is only one way to see heaven.
- When one converts to a Christian religion, too often it is from an act of their own personal will after weighing the evidence that life in here, is better than life out there. Conversion is an absolute necessity; the difference being that they remain a convert and never really grasp the concept of becoming a disciple. Churches desperately need converts to maintain salaries, buildings and their outreach into the community due to mobile nature of today’s church goers. This requires that the teaching element be reduced to that which is the least offensive to the majority of the gathering; a new, kinder gospel. Herein lies the danger; people can and will become accustomed to being a faithful convert, comfortable in their role within what truly equates to a religious social club.
The Question Should Be, Can You Be a Convert and Not a Believer?
What Marks the Difference Between the Convert and a Disciple?
The previous quote by one the leader's of the Iranian underground is a good place to start … but first a word about persecution:
Persecution: often times is the only way for His servants to be able to discern the wheat from the tares. Per Matthew 13:24-30, the tares are a work of the Devil but in verse 25, the Word makes an often overlooked small statement; “... and went his (the enemy, the Devil) way.” The Devil has done his deed, no reason to linger. He knows the redeemed are eager to accept a convert into their fold and confidence, all the while putting discernment on the back burner. They may seem harmless but as 1 Corinthians 15:33 boldly states, they will corrupt your assembly. They are the reason behind the new gospel, the reason for sin, judgment and hell being seldom broached doctrines and the assemblies becoming so worldly. A little leaven … hmmm. Now a simple exercise in discernment from aforementioned quote.
Those who are converts only, keep one foot in the world and one within the church. They hang on to much of their old life and its ways whether it is social, business or family. When they are not at ‘church’, the majority of friends, associates or family cannot see a change from the old to a totally new life. They maintain much of their social life of old, their business dealings remain unaffected and most of the extended family does not have a clue.
They have a passion for the cultural issues of the day. Politics are a hot button which often controls their temperament and outward demeanor. They are quick to take issue with others concerning current events, but have little passion about that which affects the Christian community. They also remain unaffected by many of today’s morals or should I say lack of morals.
The most telling trait displayed by converts, which sadly are the majority of most institutions, is a lack of love for the Word of God. Always listening but never learning, except that which makes it easier for them to blend in to the crowd. Fellow converts blend well with other converts, no one would ever test another for fear of being exposed themselves. The pulpit is as guilty as the pew. When you find someone who cannot get enough of the Word, you have found a disciple. You see, only a disciple could ever discern that one is a convert without any desire to grow spiritually. Oh, they may grow in some head knowledge and in the lingo necessary to maintain the status quo; but when it comes to the meat of the Word, it is too difficult for them to digest. Don’t you wonder why today most sermons and / or bible studies are geared to a five year old?
The final and ultimate discernment will made by God Himself as He brings persecution to purify His Church, the Bride of Christ.
The Iranian Church is praying for us, they know what is coming our way. The disciples of Christ can see what is coming but the churches are the proverbial ostrich with its head in the sand.