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A Spiritual Killer!

Complacency is the common disease of our time. It’s written all over this generation.

It’s also addressed in the message to the Church in Laodicea (Rev 3:14-22).

This ‘disease’ will claim many lives, spiritually. Many believers will fail to enter the Kingdom of God because they didn’t press through. They didn’t strive to take hold of what God offered (Luke 13:24).

God Tests You

1) Time. Do you endure? God tests people through the passage of time. He reveals truth, then ‘steps back’ to see whether you will love His truth.

What is the evidence that you love Him and love His truth? DOING it! And continuing to do it.

Having it is not enough – nowhere near enough! A strong delusion accompanies those who have truth in their heads, but not in their hearts. It is a delusion that makes you think that you are OK; you think that you are living out the life of Jesus, because you have His truths in your head. But are you bearing fruit?

Many are not!

Jesus said:

If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word... (Jn 14:23). He who does not love Me does not keep My words... (14:24).

I am the Vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit (15:5).


If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered (Jn 15:6).

There are many withered ‘believers’! They are withering spiritually, because they are complacent.

You have got to continue to do what is right. Eternal life will only be given to those who:

...by patient continuance in doing good, seek for glory, honour and immortality (Rom 2:7).

2) Opportunities.
Besides testing people through time, He also tests them through opportunities.

He gives them opportunities to see what they will do. Do they ‘go for it’ and DO something with the opportunity? Or do they let it pass them by?

Are they like the lazy man whom Jesus mentioned, who buried his talent in the ground. It was precious to him – notice it – to him, so he hid it in the ground to keep it for himself (Matt 25:18). He was selfish.

Complacency is rooted in selfishness.

So, take a look at yourself – like Paul reminded us to do (1 Cor 11:28). See what you are DOING with what Jesus has given you.

I knew a man who had lots of truth. He had learned so much from the Bible. He had time to read much of God’s Word, so he did. He loved it. However, he loved it for himself. It made him feel good. He felt special. He felt better than others because he knew all this truth from the Bible that others didn’t know. But he didn’t reach out with it to others. He didn’t really care for others. He cared more for himself. He let that selfcentredness engulf him, till he lost what little love for others that he had through the Spirit.

That man withered and died, spiritually. He was not saved.

For it is not the hearers who will be justified, but the DOERS! (Rom 2:13, paraphrased.)

The Human Condition

Paul reveals problems of the human condition:

Rom 2:5. Hardness of heart: an impenitent heart.
Rom 2:8. Self-seeking.

Rom 1:29. Those traits lead to:
Sexual immorality,
Covetousness or greed,
Hatred (murder),
Tale-bearing, gossip, slander (Rom 1:29).

Rom 1:30. Backbiting (vilifying),
Hating God,
Contriving evil,
Dishonouring parents (Rom 1:30).

Rom 1:31.
Being undiscerning and untrustworthy,
Unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful (Rom 1:31.)

Rom 1:32. God says these are worthy of death! 

Take A Look At Yourself

All the above are the outcome of disregard for what is right, proper and good. Complacency drags many Christians right back into the pit from which they began to be delivered!

Jesus declared that:

If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love (Jn 15:10).

It should be straightforward enough for you to see the necessity of obeying the Ten Commandments (Matt 19:17). But do you recognise the other commandments that Jesus wants you to be keeping? Besides His words in John 15:12 to love one another, there are discreet commands He issues individually on a regular basis. If you are responsive, He gives them each day.

These are prompts to your spirit to reach out to others. For example, since literature is central to what God is doing in restoring pure truth, most of these to us come in the form of words of knowledge about people. We may be reminded of particular individuals, in order to send them some MM literature, or to write to someone about a particular issue, promoting truth.

You, as you are sold out to the will of God, will receive similar ‘prods’ or reminders. If you love others, you will care for them and respond to God’s commands. Not all do, because of complacency.

When was the last time you got stirred up by the Spirit? When did you have a prompting of the Spirit and do what He asked? Or did you sidestep what He wanted you to do, and instead do something else which you preferred?

Whose heart do you respond to? God’s or your own? Selfishness and self-will will lead many into oblivion! You are meant to be led by the Spirit, not self.

James 1:22-25. We are urged to be much more than hearers! Those who hear little and do a lot are assured of a big reward. Those who hear a lot but do little will have little reward.

When was the last time you heard the voice of God? When did you sense the anointing of God upon you to minister for Him? What are you DOING with your life? Are you serving Him, or yourself?!

2 Peter 1:9. Complacency leads to blindness.

The Cure

1) Diligence.

Diligently pursue godly characteristics. 2 Peter 1:5-11. Rom 13:11-14.

2) Zeal. Psalm 69:9. Must cultivate it!

How? There’s only one way – doing good.

3) Action. Rom 15:1-3. By helping others.

Service to others. Rom 14:7. Rom 13:8.

Doing the will of God – obeying His commands – is not easy. It is confrontational. Fear holds most back. I always remember Arthur Blessit’s words: that people are paralysed by fear. Arthur walked through many countries in obedience to God’s command to him to carry behind him a huge wooden cross. He even fearlessly took it into Moscow! (In the eighties.)

We all have fears. That is natural. But don’t let Satan paralyse you through fear. Fears and inhibitions don’t begin to go until we start to DO the things we are commanded to do, but which we fear doing. Giving in to the fear solves nothing. It perpetuates it.

The problem is, many believers dismiss God’s prompts through fear or apathy, and don’t realise what they are doing! They are effectively saying ‘no’ to Him and ‘yes’ to Satan. They shut out the Spirit’s vitality.

Don’t be complacent. Be confrontational. Confront demons, and DO what God commands.

Remember, however: the prompt of the Spirit is very subtle. It can easily go unnoticed because people are not sensitive to the Spirit. If you don’t expect to hear, you won’t. So, be alert spiritually: ‘watch’!

Your Evidence

What is the evidence like of the Spirit in your life?

A) Rom 15:16-21. Whom have you brought to Christ? Or with whom have you shared further truth?

B) Are you vilified, opposed or persecuted? John 16:1-3. That can be a sign of how much you are on fire for Jesus.

C) What God says to you. When did He speak to you last? Do you hear from Him regularly? In words of knowledge, words of wisdom – revelations to help you reach others. John 15:7. Sometimes in dreams.

Jn 15:5. You can’t do anything without Him!

If you just amble through life by yourself, He won’t go with you. You’ve got to take Him with you by being responsive, expectant and zealous.

Some Obstacles

1) An unteachable (rebellious) spirit. Prov 1:5.

Someone said, “The future belongs to those who can lay aside things that have served their purpose and move on.” But people don’t want to put aside their habits, and what they have become comfortable with.

The comfortable arm chair fellowship or church is a hindrance to zeal. It breeds complacency, because you get all you want. It encourages selfishness.

2) Lack of initiative or drive.

You’ve got to reach forward, and press into new areas. You’ve got to dare to do what you would never have dared before. You’ve got to risk losing popularity or anything else you want for yourself.

You’ve got to be unhappy with yourself spiritually and with the fruit you are bearing (Lk 14:26), otherwise you won’t change. Pruning has to take place. Are you hungry for change, or satisfied and ‘stuck in the mud’?

3) Unpaid vows. Ps 50:14-15.

God means what He says. He is a God of integrity. He expects you to be like Him, too.

You made a vow to Him at baptism, and we renew that vow each year at Passover (and more often too, in repentance each day). Nothing will rob you of confidence before Him more than your broken promises. The devil will remind you of them.

You will feel a failure until you confront your failings with zeal (guts), humility and honesty. Start fulfilling your vows and God will bless your life.

What you respond to and do becomes a habit, and it’s your habits that determine your destiny.

Gal 6:3-4. Gal 6:8-10.

Malcolm B Heap, June 2006

Copyright: Midnight Ministries, PO Box 29, Aylesbury, HP17 8TL, UK