Commitment. Something we’re told Men are afraid of. Commitment. A word signifying the willful decision to do something. Often, in Christian circles, particularly evangelistic or fundamentalist groups, commitment means the acceptance of Christ as the guiding Light in our lives.
“I am committing my life to Jesus,” they might say. And the Congregation is happy and hymns are sung welcoming the person into the Body of Christ. Nice, huh?
The Dictionary defines commitment thus:
1. The act or an instance of committing, especially:
a. The act of referring a legislative bill to committee.
b. Official consignment, as to a prison or mental health facility.
c. A court order authorizing consignment to a prison.
2. a. A pledge to do.
b. Something pledged, especially an engagement by contract involving financial obligation.
3. The state of being bound emotionally or intellectually to a course of action or to another person or persons: a deep commitment to liberal policies; a profound commitment to the family.
So, when we say we are committing our lives to Christ we are making a pledge, we are binding ourselves, to Jesus. And that’s a fine sentiment for us. Indeed, if more people actually would commit themselves to Christ the world would be a far better place than it is now.
But I don’t care for the word when we use it to define what we Christians do in relation to the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords. Commit? What, like we commit to sell one hundred boxes of cookies? Like I committed to quit smoking just before Christmas? [A hint to smokers contemplating quitting … don’t do it three days before Christmas! It’s utter Hell!] We commit to give $20 each month to PBS, don’t we? Well, I don’t, but you know what I mean.
So why commit? It’s like those eternal prayers to GOD, you know the ones: “Please let me pass this test and I will never goof off again!” That’s a commitment, too. And how binding is it? Not a bit. We know that, don’t we? We can commit to any number of things, pledge our best efforts for good, and still we will come up short. And when it comes to the Kingdom of GOD, do we, any of us, want to come up short?
So what’s the point here? You’re still here? Wow! I thought you’d disappear a few sentences ago. Okay, here’s what I want to say:
You cannot commit to GOD. You cannot commit to Jesus Christ, Our Lord. For human commitment means less than nothing. We surrender.
Surrender! That’s what we must do. Can you imagine the chutzpah of any man or woman who thinks they can throw an arm over Christ’s shoulder and say, “Hey, Lord, I’m committing to you!” Can any human think they are of equal stature with GOD so that they can bargain with Him?
No! You cannot. To reach Heaven, to attain that Paradise we all seek, you cannot bargain. You must surrender to the Almighty. Down on your knees. Acknowledging your unworthiness. Begging forgiveness, and … surrendering to Him. Each one of us has to realize in our hearts and in our minds that we are completely unworthy of GOD's trust, His love, His Grace. We are deserving of nothing good from GOD. All of us are sinners. Don't sit there shaking your head! You are a great big sinner! You know it. I know it! If you have even the slightest belief in GOD the Father, you know there is but one price that is paid for sin. Death. And that's what each one of us has earned. And I don't want Death, but Life! I want to be free of Death!
Only through our complete and total surrender to GOD and Christ can we be free. Liberty does not come through wrestling with the Creator. It is not a payment for our audacity in arguing the finer points of Scriptural Law with Christ. True Liberty is only granted to those who surrender, completely, irrevocably, to the One True GOD.
Commitment is for Bake Sales. It is for Christmas Christians who have no belief in the Almighty but call themselves Christians because Mom and Dad were.
Surrender is for believers in the Divine. Surrender is for the freeing of the Spirit.
Surrender is For Ever!