A flag is a standard. The flag in the picture above flew over Chu Lai in 1967 while I was there. It was given to me by a captain that was the commanding officer over the recon group that was there. We met many years later.
Christian standards are not designed to fly like a flag nor should we be ashamed of whom we are. A Christian should use discretion with standards. Queen Esther kept the fact that she was a Jew secret until the appropriate time.
Often new believers wear jewelry and bumper stickers to display their faith. It should be obvious by the different walk that we have from the world.
What are Standards?
When I saw standards being emphasized in a church that continued to grow many grabbed on with a carnal religious motive. I see restaurants with a sign: “no shoes, no shirt; no service.” Laws and rules are set up to protect and define the group. Standards need to be taught with a lot of grace. If forced it becomes legalistic sanctification and the recipient becomes proud of his standing.
Why have Standards?
Why are standards important? A standard should represent a mile marker in one’s walk with the Lord. When a believer receives a word from God and makes a life changing application that is a new standard for that believer and can be looked upon as a point of growth or a mile marker. Standards conform us to a leader or a group but Christian standards should please God. When properly taught standards still need room to be tried out and tested in the believer’s life.
When to apply Standards
God’s Rhemas are the keys to when to apply a standard. A believer that receives a word from God should make a change. However just like everything else the believer must keep in memory or lose it. Watchman Nee’s book The Normal Christian Life helped me to understand the whole issue. Nee pastored a church within a church and there was no condemnation for those without standards.
If you are better than anyone because of something you have accomplished you are involved with legalistic sanctification. If you make a change because you have a word from God and your motive is to please the one who went to the cross for you that is pleasing to God. Daniel and his friends made an appeal to eat a diet that was prescribed by the Lord. It wasn’t long before the unbelievers set out to kill them. Today those with standards are not being killed in America but they are being persecuted.
Are you asking the Lord how He wants to change your life?
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