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It's Not OK to Treat Jesus Like a Live-In Boyfriend/Girlfriend—He Wants Nothing Less Than Full Commitment

Though following Christ is a lifelong journey, it’s important that people make a decision, for Christ, for life.

We instituted baptism Sundays at New Vintage Church roughly a year ago. About five times a year, we set aside a Sunday to baptize people and to focus on evangelism and recommitment to Christ. This, of course, doesn’t mean people shouldn’t or can’t get baptized before or after. We encourage them to do it whenever they are ready … and not a minute later.

Baptism Sundays are simply a regular, scheduled time we set for people to think about where they are with Jesus and whether it’s time for them to make a life-long commitment to Christ. We’ve noticed a rise in the number of people doing it, as well as a rise in our congregational heart for evangelism.

It’s absolutely vital that churches call people to full, lifelong commitment to Christ. 

Some churches these days, fearing the “judgmental” or “pushy” labels, foster what I call “cohabitation with Jesus.”

This is where people feel committed without ever having committed. It’s certainly not the most gracious phrase in the world, but it illustrates what actually happens when a church allows people to simply exist in the church without pastoring them toward full commitment to Christ.

Jesus is coming back for his Bride, not his girlfriend. His Bride is those who have betrothed themselves to him fully.

I listened to a podcast a few months ago that dealt with the economic cost of marriage and raising children.

The interviewers introduced the listeners to several different couples and how they dealt with the issue. However, one in particular struck me—a couple who lived together unmarried. They owned a home together and had a child together, but stayed unmarried as an economic decision.

Here’s the quote that struck me: “We’re just as committed as any married couple. We just don’t see the need to pay that kind of price unnecessarily. We don’t understand why we need a piece of paper to tell us we’re married—which also creates unnecessary risk and cost for both of us.”

They went on to describe how they kept their finances completely separated, but split all the bills and costs for the child 50/50.

Let me go ahead and suggest: “If your finances aren’t ‘one,’ you’re not as committed to each other as those whose are.” Marriage is about commitment to one another that transcends cost and risk. It’s becoming one flesh.

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Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California--a fast-growing plant launched in 2011. Tim is also the purveyor of New Vintage Leadership - a blog offering cutting edge insights on leadership and theology and the author of numerous articles and one book: Jesus, the Powerful Servant.