Drift Prevention 

INTRO: Around 31 years ago, Patsy and I had the privilege to stay in a missionary’s houseboat on the Amazon River

So, we eventually had to jump into the river:

According to Hebrews, Christians can drift away from their original beliefs 

Hebrews 2:1 We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. (NIV)

The definition of drift is: “a slow and gradual movement or change from one place to another”

What causes people to drift?

ILLUSTRATION: If you only have water under your feet – not on solid ground – you will drift 

Today we are not focusing on obvious strong currents: 

Today we’d like to look at 3 main thoughts: 

Currents 

Obvious and strong:

2 Pet. 2:1 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.

2 Pet. 2:15 Forsaking the right way, they have gone astray. They have followed the way of Balaam, the son of Beor, who loved gain from wrongdoing,

Look at the contrast here: 

2 Pet. 1:16 For we did not follow cleverly devised myths when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.

Subtle and weak: 

The Glamour of the World– this will raise your anchor

Picking the Wrong Fight– (this will raise your anchor)

STORY: Years ago, I got engaged in a fight/strife between 2 minister friends – it definitely sidetracked me for a few months 

We do this to ourselves: 

The Subtleness of Progressive Christianity 

STORY: Nice young man – talked – he was once in a church 

Five Signs Your Church Might Be Headed Toward Progressive Christianity – (by Alisa Childers) 

1. There is a lowered view of the Bible 
2. Feelings are emphasized over facts 

3. Essential Christian doctrines are open for re-interpretation
​4. Historic terms are re-defined

​5.  The heart of the gospel message shifts from sin and redemption to social justice

The Lie of ‘Progressive Christianity’ – (by Jerry Pierce)

Quote: “Christianity that conforms to culture is a counterfeit Gospel”

A Perfect Storm 

I believe there has been a perfect storm that has and will drive young Christians from the church: 

It’s the subtle currents that have caused some of the beautiful young people around the world

Here is how a perfect storm can form: 

That said what can and, in some cases has happened:

They instead heard: 

People who have a series of negative experiences with church – can be driven into progressive Christianity:

So how do we stay balanced?

“These are issues in which there is no middle ground,” Mohler says. “There’s no middle ground between affirming and denying the bodily resurrection of Christ. There’s also no middle ground between defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman and saying it can be something else. … So Christians are going to have to answer with the full measure of conviction, or they’re just on a slower track than some others to denying the faith.” – (by R. Albert Mohler Jr)

The Lord REMINDED about a few things: 

Holiness is first imparted and begins working from the inside out

STORY: Bro Hagin – coffee no – tea yes

Allow my grace and the holiness I impart to teach people to overcome sin and live holy

People have turned my grace to lasciviousness, whereas my grace teaches and transforms people to holiness

My Spirit works with my Word and not with people’s do’s and don’ts’s. Teaching my truth in love allows me to supernaturally transform people 

Concerning serving: This hurts young Christians 

Do not motivate anyone to serve with guilt as it has harmful aftereffects

Teach serving in love and according to my Word. This will allow me to work in people’s hearts and move them to serve

Anchors 

Heb. 2:1 Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we HAVE heard, lest we drift away from it. (ESV)

VIDEO – ANCHOR 

The key to not drifting is paying more careful attention to what we HAVE heard. 

We can be the same with Bible truth 

NOTICE: Hearing something new isn’t the key to being anchored. 

A common downfall is to not value and act on what we have ALREADY heard.

ILLUSTRATON: Sports teams who lose games commonly go back and practice the basic drills of their sport in order to win again.

The answer to our situations or problems is probably quite near to us. 

The things we HAVE heard contain the power to anchor us and keep us set free

Truth forms our values and creates an order of importance that should be the root of our motivations

So, an anchor will be something we already heard:

One: Where Does Jesus Rank in Our Lives?

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (ESV)

Two: Define God’s Love 

Here is what Christians need to know: 

Joseph Cooke who wrote, “Grace is nothing more nor less than the face that love wears when it meets imperfection, weakness, failure, sin.”

Understanding and Application

No One Else Can Get INSIDE Us 

Rom. 5:5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

God Love Gave – Rather than Took 

Rom. 5:8 But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (NLT)

God’s Love is Undividable 

Rom. 8:35 Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture (MSG)

God’s Love is Built on Truth 

1 Cor. 13:6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; (KJV)

1 Cor. 13:6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. (ESV)

Rom. 12:9 Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. (NLT)

2 Cor. 5:14a For the love of Christ controls us…(ESV)

2 Cor. 5:14a We are ruled by Christ’s love…(CEV)

2 Cor. 5:14a For the love of Christ overmasters us… (WYMTH)

Confession: 

READ 1 Cor 13 – The Characteristics of God’s Love