Landrith asks: 'What's your appetite?'by Emily Grooms
CLEVELAND, Ga. (TMCNews) – David Landrith, senior pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville Tenn., addressed the importance of living a holy life in an unholy world during Truett-McConnell College's Feb. 14 chapel service."Most revivals that take place happen through young people," Landrith said. "But so often they die quickly because there is too much worldly influence."Referencing 1 Peter 1:13-16, Landrith noted the wickedness of Peter's day: an evil emperor Nero, immorality, idol worship, sexual sins, and more.Referencing 1 Peter 1.13-16, Landrith noted the wickedness of Peter's day: an evil emperor, Nero; immorality; idol worship; sexual sins; and more."In that moment, in the midst of evil and debauchery," said Landrith, noting Peter's words: 'Be holy as Christ is Holy.'"Here we are in 2013, where we have [a presidential] inauguration, where a pastor is uninvited because of his position on homosexuality, abortions run rampant, and billions of dollars are spent on pornography. In the midst of the mire of our culture, the Lord says to us, 'Be holy,'" Landrith said."What does the Bible mean by holy? Landrith asked.Referencing the holiness of God, Landrith defined the term: "It means that God is separate, distinct. He is in a category all His own.""There is none like Him," he claimed.Landrith admitted the temptation to question God and his reasoning: "Sometimes, we read stuff in the Bible and we find ourselves asking, 'Was God right to do that?'"He further explained how God always gets it right. "He always does the right thing when it comes to our lives. We can always trust God's plan and purpose because in his holiness, he always gets it right.""God never makes mistakes," he said. "When God tells us in His word not to do something, He does know what He's talking about."His holiness relates to us, Landrith noted. "It tells us we are in need of a Savior.""We cannot get to God because of our sin," he stated, claiming the importance of having a relationship with Him. "We sometimes think God should have saved us. No, he doesn't need any of us! But He came down and saved us anyway and has given us purpose and fulfillment."Noting the importance of recognizing Gods holiness and majesty on a regular basis, Landrith encouraged students not to "lose the awe factor when it comes to God.""We sing 'Amazing Grace' like it's not that amazing. It is amazing!" he said.Constantly recognizing these attributes of God will aid in the avoidance of legalism, Landrith stated, "We will serve the Lord out of the joy that comes from a relationship with Him." He challenged students to check their hearts and warned of legalism's temptation: "You're not going to have a life of victory by simply 'trying harder.' The danger for us in legalism is the thought that we can follow a list and become more holy."Landrith noted reasons God expects us to be holy in our conduct: "We represent Him here on earth. "We are ambassadors for Christ. We are residents of this world but citizens of the Kingdom of God."People draw conclusions about those who claim to follow God, Landrith alluded. "What kind of conclusions do you think people are drawing about God based on the way you're living your life?" he asked. "Sometimes, we give others a distorted view."Recognizing the different phases children go through with their parents, Landrith wondered if Christians are ashamed to associate with Christ: "When you go back home, are you sort of ashamed to be identified with Christ?" he asked.Another reason God calls us to be holy is for our protection, Landrith claimed."Sin has an aftertaste and it's not good," Landrith stated. "It's pleasurable for a moment and then it's followed by the aftertaste."Landrith explained how an abundant life comes by obedience to God: "God knows that a life of disobedience and sin is a way of leading to tremendous heart-ache.""What do you have an appetite for," he asked; "the things of the world or for Jesus?"Landrith shared how easy it is to fill up on the world. "You can fill up on the world so much that you can ruin your appetite for spiritual things," he said. "If we fill ourselves up with Jesus we begin to slowly lose our appetite for worldly things.""I wonder today, what do you have an appetite for?" he asked.
Emily Grooms is a Truett-McConnell senior English major and a freelance writer for the college.