Country music artist Waylon Jennings sang about getting back to the basics of love. Christian group, 4 Him, sang about getting back to the basics of life. The importance of basics depends on what the basics are. If I choose a basic virus protection package for my computer, I give up full protection. If for my television satellite provider, channels I won’t be able to watch. The basics are the bare minimum.
Whether having only the basics is enough merits further consideration. Basics carry disadvantages but are necessary to enjoy the frills. I can’t watch ESPN if I don’t at least have satellite or cable. I can’t enjoy full virus protection if I don’t at least have the virus program. I can’t get back to the basics of love if I don’t have love to begin with.
When the writer says to leave the basics of Christianity and get on with mature spiritual living, he doesn’t mean the basics are dispensable. I can’t grow up in Christ if I don’t have Christ. While these early believers didn’t need to continually rehash the basics, the basics were imperative.
The basics of the biblical message concern God’s love and humanity’s problem. God calls the problem sin, and he cannot associate with it because of his holy nature. Either I or someone else must pay. Because of his enormous and matchless love, God decided to allow his Son to pay the debt. He did so by dying on an old rugged cross on a hill called Calvary. In some unfathomable way, God placed the world’s sins on his Son, thereby freeing all persons who choose to accept his gift. Through faith in Christ and belief in his resurrection, I can be reconciled to God, enjoy an abundant life presently, and look forward to a wonderful eternity.
I can’t leave the basics out, but once I’ve accepted them I must grow in my understanding of how to apply to life what I’ve received.
What have you done with the basics?
Prayer: Merciful God, thank You for the basics that remind us of the great love You’ve shown through Jesus Christ.
(Photo courtesy of morguefile and puravida.)