There is a difference between good works and godliness. There is a difference between spiritual gifts and spirituality. I have been saved for over 40 years now and have not only seen my share of performance driven Christianity but have also played my part in it.
Miserable replicas is my final description of those who live under this bondage of doing instead of being.
Recently I was looking through the history of the church at Corinth and could not help but notice that this church lacked in no gifts!
4 I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; 5 That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; 6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: 7 So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ:
— 1 Corinthians 1:4-7
Yet, Paul tells them in the next chapter, even tho you have giftedness, you lack godliness.
1And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. 2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. 3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
— 1 Corinthians 3:1-3
We must not forget that throughout the church you will find people of all sorts, each having different spiritual gifts. The gifts of “apostles, prophets, and evangelists”, are all included in this list. You will also find serving, giving and administrative gifts. The emphasis of the two words Paul uses, “spiritual gifts”, is always on the spiritual.
Replica of Godliness
These manifestations come as we are filled with the Spirit. However, there is a replica being produced today as it was in the church of Corinth. A replica that appears to be spiritual, but it is being performed by carnal people, who have learned a performance-driven technic to seemingly get the same results.
You Must Be Delivered
If you are performance-driven your natural response may be to make a plan or do something in your own power to get free from the trap of performing. Maybe your plan is to read a book or try harder in hopes of being set free from being the performance-driven by performing! You can’t work your way out of it – the only way to be made free from being performance-driven is being delivered. You must be rescued by God’s love.
He Will Do What You Cannot Do
Jesus Christ will do for you what you can’t do for yourself. This is His grace. This teaching is basic 101 throughout the RU materials. I have seen missionaries, pastors, evangelist, and church members all rejoice again as they finally have found the energy from the Spirit to see the results of the spiritual, and the gifted. Let’s not settle for giftedness, let’s choose godliness.