This weekend a friend sent me a link to a story I was familiar with, yet didn’t know the latest news. What I knew was Tim Lambesis, lead singer of the “Christian” band As I Lay Dying, was recently sentenced to 6 years in prison for plotting to kill his now ex-wife. The latest news was an interview where Lambesis admitted, while being marketed for years as a Christian heavy metal band, he was actually an atheist. He admits he/they pretended to be Christians, because they were “making a good living off the market.”
I must confess, this story doesn’t anger me; it saddens me. Just like with pastors and priests we have seen fall and make headlines, there are going to be those who claim to be authentic, but aren’t. The public persona doesn’t match the private life. They love what they gain, not the Gospel.
Look at Jesus’ words in Matthew 7:21-23…
“Not all who sound religious are really godly people. They may refer to me as ‘Lord,’ but still won’t get to heaven. For the decisive question is whether they obey my Father in heaven. At the Judgment many will tell me, ‘Lord, Lord, we told others about you and used your name to cast out demons and to do many other great miracles.’ But I will reply, ‘You have never been mine. Go away, for your deeds are evil.’”
Here’s the take home for today…
1—A good friend of mine always says, “We aren’t supposed to judge, but we can be fruit inspectors.” In our current climate and morality with the “blurred lines” getting stronger daily, we must constantly sharpen our own discernment. We must “test the spirits” and have the guts to speak up when we sense something is wrong and defend when something is right.
2—Lambesis said he renounced his faith in college after getting into psychology. What if a caring, concerned, discerning Christian had befriended Lambesis during that time? Might he not be in prison? Might he not be making headlines for faking out Christian metal fans? We’ll never know, but there are people like this all around and we could quite possibly change the course of a life through the power of Christ—if we ‘re paying attention to the “Tim’s” in our lives.
3—We must commit to being men who are not changed by culture, but Christ. Then, when we are, we will change the culture. You and I may never be handed a microphone for the masses, but we must remember every day God Himself has given us a voice and a reason to speak up.
Dear brothers, if anyone has slipped away from God and no longer trusts the Lord and someone helps him understand the Truth again, that person who brings him back to God will have saved a wandering soul from death, bringing about the forgiveness of his many sins. —James 5:19-20 TLB