A Revolutionary Truth
St. Augustine supposedly said, “If Christ is not Lord of all, then Christ is not Lord at all.” To understand Christ as Lord of all the universe, and not merely the religious spheres of life, has been a revolutionary idea in my life. This truth has profound implications for Christians living out their faith in this world.
At the very least it means followers of the Lord Jesus Christ must understand that their faith is not for Sunday mornings only but for the rest of their lives as well. The Christian faith is a complete world and life view. There is no area of one’s life about which Christ is unconcerned. Therefore, Christians must live renovated lives in submission to and aligned with the Lordship of Jesus Christ, all in the power of his sovereign Spirit.
Becoming a Christian, and then living as one, means far more than a morally cleaned up personal life. Of course that’s included, but it means much more. Understanding Christ as Lord means we must learn to think Christianly about every aspect of our lives – how we behave toward our family, how we handle our checkbook, how we think about current events, how we exercise integrity at work, how we respond to injustice or immorality – all of these things and more must flow out of our understanding of Christ’s Lordship. Such things comprise faithful discipleship and are the fruit of submitting to Jesus Christ as Lord.
If Christ is Lord of all, then that also means Christians need to expand their spheres of influence. We must not embrace isolated Christianity. We are a community who lives within a broader community. It has been said we have dual citizenship. We are citizens of this world, but also citizens of the Kingdom of God.
Christ is not only concerned about our Christian circles, but is also passionately interested about those outside our circles. The church which believes in and embraces the Lordship of Jesus Christ is the church which seeks to invade the world with the good news of the Kingdom of God. And this Kingdom changes everything.
John Wesley’s England was thoroughly transformed by the preaching of the gospel of the Kingdom of God. It is said, even by secular historians, that were it not for Wesley’s influence, England would have experienced the same messy revolution as France. Wesley and other Christians, however, influenced by the Lordship of Jesus Christ, preached the gospel and turned England upside down through the lives of transformed men and women marching under the orders of their Savior and King.
My understanding of Christ’s Lordship has impacted what I pass on to others as a pastor and witness of Christ. I do not teach a secular/sacred distinction that leads to compartmentalized lives. I do not communicate a Christ who is unconcerned about our culture or world. I do not tell people about a Jesus who makes no demands upon every sphere of their lives.
Jesus is certainly my precious Savior, full of grace and mercy. But as Lord, he beckons me to submit all of my life to him so I may become more fully the man he created, redeemed, and called me to be. And because I love him, what else can I do but follow him (John 14:15, 21, 23)?
Take out a clean sheet of paper and write down every sphere of your life and every interest and responsibility you have. Next to each item you wrote, put the letter, “L” for “Lord,” or the letters, “NL” for “Not Lord,” based on whether or not you are submitting to Christ’s Lordship in those areas. What are the results? What are the areas of your life you find yourself not submitting to Christ? Why do you think that is? What can you do, starting today, to live more faithfully to Christ in those areas?
Grace and Truth,
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