New Testament Christianity is designed to go with us wherever we go. If we are at home, we are guided by what it says about family life. If we go to work, we go by what it says about service and honesty. When we are at play, our activities are determined by its pattern of modesty and morality. The fall session of college is starting back and so are our public schools. What about at school? Will our Christianity go with us to school?
(4). WHEN YOU TAKE CHRISTIANITY TO SCHOOL, YOU WON’T END UP IN THE WRONG CROWD.
Christians realize that evil communications corrupt good morals (1 Cor. 15:33), and they desire to avoid bad company. A Christian realizes worldly people will pressure him to do worldly things, so he’s careful not to put himself into a group that may cause him to compromise his faith. Paul wrote in Romans 12:2, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” The Christian has enough courage, conviction, and confidence to avoid the temptations to drink, to curse, to vandalize, or commit fornication in order to have friends. These activities lead to guilt, addiction, alienation, fines, and unwanted pregnancy – things that young people are not equipped to handle and who is?
One of the saddest stories in the Bible is recorded in Matthew 27:3-8 when Judas came back to the chief priests and elders and threw down the blood money he had once coveted. It even gives the reason for his actions. It says he realized his sin and repented. The Greek word here is not the usual word for repentance but one meaning to regret. He regretted what he had done. He regretted getting mixed up with them. By returning the money, He tried to undo the evil he had done, but he could not. We too shall reap what we sow (Gal. 6:7,8). A person can be forgiven of sin if he will repent and turn from it. Yet some things we do cannot be undone. Unequal yokes and unholy alliances can shatter our dreams and ruin our lives.
In First Kings 22:48, we read a story of high hopes and shattered dreams. There was a man who dreamed of gold. To acquire it, he would spare no expense. If ever a man was inflamed with “gold fever,” it was Jehoshaphat, king of Judah. If it meant building a fleet of ships, so be it! It is well-known that gold is not found everywhere. If one has to sail to Ophir to acquire it, to Ophir he will go. Suddenly the seaport became a beehive of activity as the ships were being built. King Jehoshaphat had such high hopes. He could almost see his ships loaded with gold. And then his dreams were shattered! “Jehoshaphat made ships of Tharshish to go to Ophir for gold: but they went not; for the ships were broken at Eziongeber” (1 Kings 22:48). What caused this to happen? We are not told except for an additional statement that is given about this in 2 Chronicles 20:37. Chronicles provides us with some divine commentary on what happened. 2 Chronicles 20:35-37 says, “And after this did Jehoshaphat king of Judah join himself with Ahaziah king of Israel, who did very wickedly: And he joined himself with him to make ships to go to Tarshish: and they made the ships in Eziongaber. Then Eliezer the son of Dodavah of Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, saying, Because thou hast joined thyself with Ahaziah, the LORD hath broken thy works. And the ships were broken, that they were not able to go to Tarshish.” Because of his lust for gold, King Jehoshaphat had entered into an unholy alliance with an idolater, king Ahaziah. That is why his dreams were shattered.
Whether the issue is a close friendship, a marriage, or a business relationship, the Bible warns, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (2 Cor. 6:14). You just won’t do it if you hope to keep your dreams alive.
(5) WHEN YOU TAKE CHRISTIANITY TO SCHOOL, YOU’LL END UP TALKING ABOUT CHRIST.
Christians talk about Christ and New Testament Christianity. They display the attitude of Paul in Romans 1:16, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ….” They are proud when others find out they are members of the church of Christ (Mt. 16:18). They are glad to have the opportunity to show from the Scriptures why we believe what we believe and why we teach what we teach.
If someone asks me why I believe in God and not evolution, what will I say? What do I say if someone asks me why I believe the Bible truly is the Word of God, or why I believe that it teaches this or that?” Such questions actually provide us with an opportunity to explain what we believe and why. First Peter 3:15 states, “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” Jesus has told us, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mk. 16:15-16). School is certainly a part of the world to which the gospel must go. We encourage our young people to bring people to services and ultimately to Christ. Take Christianity to school. It will bless your life and the lives of others.
All of us, at all times, and in every place need to remember WHO we are and WHOSE we are. We are Christians. We belong to Christ. First Corinthians 7:23 says, “Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.” Jesus died to save you. Trust Him, Turn from sin, Confess His name, and put him on in baptism (Gal. 3:26-27). Live for Him faithfully remembering at all times and in every place who you are and whose you are.