Conviction Over Convenience

February 4, 2024   /   Brad Myers   /   Cross Pointe Church

CHASING CONVENIENCE!
Pastor Brad Myers

Conviction over Convenience February 4, 2024

Chasing: Pursuing to capture or overtake.

Convenience (dictionary): Favorable, easy, comfortable.

Convenience (God): suitable or timely opportunity, beneficial

  • Convenient (Us): Situation
  • Convenient (God) Person

Thought: We tend to define convenience about our situation; but God defines convenience about our person which changes our situation.

1 Kings 12:25-33 (NIV) Golden Calves at Bethel and Dan

  • Convenience can be deceptive. Deceives us to think we don’t have to work so hard to serve a God!
  • verse 29 “the people came to worship the one at Bethel and went as far as Dan to worship the other.”
  • Convenience can be alluring (verse 28-33)
  • Convenience makes you think differently.
  • Jeroboam put one of the golden calves in Bethel. Where God once built an altar!
  • Convenience can be dangerous.

30 And this thing became a sin; the people came to worship the one at Bethel and went as far as Dan to worship the other.

  • Convenience became sin!

Today: Conviction over Convenience

Convenience: Favorable, easy, comfortable.

Conviction: A firm belief

Q) “Which do we want to live by: conviction or convenience?”

Thought: We really want to live by conviction but it’s easier to live by convenience. When I live by convenience, I have fewer tough decisions.  I get more done.  I have lots of company on my journey.   When I live by conviction, life gets intensely faith filled.

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Early Christians had the same question

  • The struggles of the early Christians shall be an inspiration to all believers today!
  • They endured and sacrificed for Christ.

Thought: The early Christians stand as a monument of a firm and unshakable conviction of the truth of the gospel.

1 Peter 1:6-7 (NLT)

So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while……..  So when your faith remains strong through many trials, (conviction) it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.

What’s the difference Conviction & Convenience?

  • Convenience is comfortable and easy.  Conviction is risky and difficult.
  • Convenience enables one’s desires.   Conviction shapes one’s behavior.
  • Convenience is common. Conviction is rare.
  • Convenience loves what I’ve always done. Conviction takes the road less traveled,
  • Convenience prays with my family at church.  Conviction prays when no one is looking.
  • Convenience is saying “I’m a Christian.” Conviction is living like Jesus.
  • Convenience says helping others is important.  Conviction says talk is cheap.
  • Convenience follows my desires.  Conviction follows my purpose.
  • Convenience is casual. Conviction is powerful.
  • Convenience causes one to please people.  Conviction causes one to please God.
  • Convenience gives when money is plentiful.  Conviction gives out of principle.
  • Convenience empowers laziness.  Conviction fuels self-discipline.

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When Paul reasoned before Felix, the governor desired a “convenient season,”

Acts 24:24-25

Several days later Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he spoke about faith in Christ Jesus. 25 As Paul talked about righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and said, “That’s enough for now! You may leave. When I find it convenient, I will send for you.”

Thought: There is no such thing as a Christian by convenience.

One of the most loosely used words today is “Christian,”

Early Christians

  • Turned to God from idols, to serve a living and true God.
  • It was not a matter of sentimentality or convenience.

My Thought: Their convictions to the principles of the gospel were much more important than property or life itself.

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Hebrews 10:32-34 (NIV)

Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you endured in a great conflict full of suffering. 33 Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. 34 You suffered along with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions.

Thought: True Christians don’t endure such things simply because it is “convenient”—but because the principles involved are more important than life, and these “convictions” are so deeply rooted they are unwavering.

Thought: True Christians tend to view Convenience as a compromise.

Q) “Why do you always have to do the right thing?”

Really asking, “Why are you such a man of conviction?”

Convenience sometimes looks like Conviction when Compromise is involved.

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Moses & Pharoh

Pharaoh offered Israel to perform sacrifices to God, but in Egypt.

Exodus 8:25 (NIV)

Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, “Go, sacrifice to your God here in the land.”

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He then offered to allow them to go, but not very far.

Exodus 8:28 (NIV)

Pharaoh said, “I will let you go to offer sacrifices to the Lord your God in the wilderness, but you must not go very far. Now pray for me.”

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Pharaoh offered the men to go and leave the women and children behind.

Exodus 10:10-11 (NIV)

Pharaoh said, “The Lord be with you—if I let you go, along with your women and children! Clearly you are bent on evil. 11 No! Have only the men go and worship the Lord, since that’s what you have been asking for.” Then Moses and Aaron were driven out of Pharaoh’s presence.

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Pharaoh offers them all to go, but to leave their flocks and herds behind.

Exodus 10:24 (NIV)

Then Pharaoh summoned Moses and said, “Go, worship the Lord. Even your women and children may go with you; only leave your flocks and herds behind.

Q) What’s the true difference between Conviction & Convenience

A) Am I a follower of Christ, or just a fan? 

Thought: Followers are led by convictions deeply rooted in their faith from the standard of God’s Word and the life of Jesus. Fans are led by convenience rooted in compromise.  When it’s convenient, I’ll follow Christ; but the moment it begins to cost me something, I’m out!

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Conviction refuses to copy the standards of the world around us,

Romans 12:2 (NIV)

2Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. 

What’s Conform mean?

Conform: Acting in accordance with prevailing social standards & attitudes.

Thought: Conformity tries to change us from the outside.  But conviction is based on a relationship with Jesus that is intimate and personal; it changes us from the inside.

Thought: Conviction allows God to bring out the best in you as you grow in Christ, developing a well-formed maturity in you!

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