When I was 15 years of age, I surrendered my life to the Lord, and accepted the call to preach. Before that, I generally saw Christianity as a WWJD or #IAmSecond bracelet, a Bible verse in my Instagram bio, and occasionally making my way to the altar because everyone else in my youth department went. Anything that had the word God on it, seemed okay! If it was a country/pop/R&B song that mentioned “God” once or twice, or was sung by an artist that professed to follow Christ, it was clean and ok to listen to. I could wear what I wanted, do what I wanted, and like what I wanted, as long as I professed Christ in whatever I was doing.
However, I saw a fault in my process of thinking. Even though the things I did were labeled as Christian, I noticed that everything I was doing looked just like what the world was doing…just without the label. Seeing this helped me realize that just like the WWJD bracelet, my Christianity was just an accessory. I didn’t want to live my life contrary to what the Bible said, while giving glory to God. It was when I gave my life to the Lord, that I saw that Christianity should never be an accessory, but a lifestyle. How does Christianity become a lifestyle? What do you have to do? Do I have to post more pictures on Instagram of my morning devotions? Did I need to share the post on Facebook that clearly proves I love Jesus instead of scrolling past it? Did all of my t-shirts need to say “My lifeguard walks on water?” What was it that I was missing?
Things changed when the Bible went from being a STORYBOOK, to being a GUIDEBOOK for my life. I found that living the Christian life was much simpler than I thought. All I had to realize was that being a Christian meant being more like Christ! The answer to being like Christ is found in the Bible as a whole! If I believed the Bible, and practiced everything that it said in its original context, then that made me a young fundamentalist!
In the NBA, there’s a basketball player named Tim Duncan. A nickname that people have given Tim Duncan is “The Big Fundamental.” He managed to achieve this nickname because he simply played basketball by the book. Fundamentalism is simply doing Christianity “by the Book!” Here are my pros and cons of being a young fundamentalist:
PRO #1: I Know What I Believe, and What I Believe Will Never Change.
We live in a world where things are constantly changing. People change their style, change their opinions, change their friends, and often change their beliefs. It’s almost as if all it takes is one convincing speech to sway what people believe. Who’s right? Who’s wrong? How can we know for sure? The King James Bible has the answer to every question to life in its pages. We are truly privileged to hold the inspired Word of God!
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” – II Timothy 3:16
We also know that we can have confidence that His Word never changes! It is the same truth as it was when it was originally written! Even if all of the world changes where it stands, I can know for sure that the Bible will always be the same, and that it will always be true.
PRO #2: I Have Safety from the Pressure and Dangers of Sin.
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,” – Hebrews 12:1
God tells us to lay aside every weight. A weight is something that can hinder you in obeying God’s Word, or can put you in a place of weakness that will allow the Devil to attack you spiritually. David stayed home when he should have been at battle, and because he allowed his complacency to weigh him down, he committed adultery with Bathsheba and murdered her husband. When I gave my life to the Lord, I stopped going to the movie theaters, stopped watching wrong movies, and stopped hanging with the wrong friends. I set up godly convictions in my life that kept me from places where the devil could attack me. I learned that there were no gray areas in the Bible. Its truth is black and white! What I was doing was either right, or wrong. So there aren’t things that are mostly right and somewhat wrong? No. I figured out that Contemporary Christian Music made listening to worldly music easier because of how alike they sounded. I also figured out that Contemporary Christian music was worldly music with Christian words put to it, and it was wrong even in itself! I set up restrictions on my smartphone to keep any temptation out of reach to look at any inappropriate thing. I stayed clear from public beaches to keep my thoughts clean by not seeing immodest dress in my surroundings. So is it wrong not to have restrictions on your smartphone? Is it sinful to go to the beach? The answer is no, but to put myself in a place where not setting up those convictions in my life can cause me to sin, then I better play it safe and have those convictions.
PRO #3: The Great Commission is the Main Focus.
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” – Matthew 28:19-20
In every thing that we do, the main purpose of our church, and the main focus of our preaching is to win souls, baptize, and teach every person we can! This is not the Hyles way, the Roloff way, the Spurgeon way, or even the Apostle Paul way. This is God’s way. The men who have gone before us followed these ways because it was God’s way. We don’t do things because it’s what our forefathers did. We do these things because of WHY our forefathers did them. They were simply obeying the final words of Jesus Christ before ascending to heaven. We get to make an impact on all of eternity by knocking doors, running buses, and preaching the Gospel by seeing souls come to Christ, and follow Him in their lives.
CON #1: I’ve Missed Out On Pleasing Myself.
Being a young fundamentalist requires me to not live selfishly. While other forms of “Christianity” suggest to live how I want, I know that the Bible tells me differently. I don’t know what the party life is like. I don’t know what it’s like to wake up one morning and not remember what happened the night before. I don’t know what it’s like to battle addiction every day, or chase popularity with the world. I don’t know what its like to please myself. However, I know what it’s like to please God. I found out that pleasing myself only ended up in hurting myself, and while pleasing God ended up in receiving a joy that this world could never replicate. All of the sadness and heartbreak of sinning and getting betrayed by the world could have burdened me for the rest of my life, but I chose to please God instead of me.
CON #2: I’m Closed-Minded.
Part of being a young fundamentalist means that I believe what I believe, and nothing can change it. The world is always searching for something new. They are always seeking something that satisfies more than whatever they had before, but young fundamentalists are criticized for never giving these new ideas or philosophies a chance! We have a philosophy of our own.
1.) God’s way is the best way. & 2.) If it’s not broken, don’t fix it. We don’t have to find new ways of sharing the Gospel. We believe that the Gospel works in every age! We don’t have to give in to what the world claims to be better than Christianity, we know that God promises eternal victory through the power of His blood! Why would we change our mind? If God never changes, then why should we feel compelled to change?
“For I am the LORD, I change not;…” – Malachi 3:6a
CON #3: I’m Predictable.
Can you guess where I will be on Sunday? How about Wednesday night? Do you think you can guess where I’ll be on Saturday morning? If you have been around in church long enough, I’m sure you guessed I’m in church on Sundays and Wednesday nights, and out visiting my bus route on Saturday mornings. While some may call this predictable, God calls this faithfulness. What would I do if someone was mocking God? What will I do every morning when I wake up? Hopefully people can assume that I would take a stand for the Lord, and that I would be found reading my Bible and praying every morning. How would you feel if you came home, and your parents didn’t have dinner for you? What would you do if a police officer decided to rob you instead of protect you? If life was this unpredictable, we would face great uncertainty every day. While the world calls us predictable, God sees us as faithful. Our job is to be in our place when God tells us to be there. Let God find us faithful in His work, and faithful in our lifestyle.
“He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.” – Luke 16:10
Being a young fundamentalist is more than just a title to determine what kind of church I attend, or what kind of people I follow. Being a young fundamentalist is complete adherence and obedience to the infallible Word of God. It is something I am proud to be! Choose to be faithful. Choose to be a soul winner. Choose to be a light to your school, youth department, and family. Choose to believe the King James Bible for everything that it says. Choose to be a young fundamentalist!