C.S. Lewis, in his book,Mere Christianity, asked the question, “Is Christianity hard or easy?” To be honest, if anyone tells you that following Christ is easy and that you are going to be healthy, successful, and wealthy, he or she isn’t telling you the truth. In fact, life gets more difficult after we come to Christ.
In Luke 9:23, Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up His cross daily and follow me.” Taking up the cross means being willing to die to follow Jesus. Denying yourself means surrendering your life to Christ. Thus, Christianity is hard. However, at the same time, Jesus said that it is also easy. In Matthew 11:30, Jesus said that His yoke is easy, and His burden is light. Therefore,the answer to the previous question is that the Christian life is both hard and easy at the same time, and Lewis gives the reason for that, which is the whole transformation of our inner being.
Christianity is Hard
The moment we stepped into the relationship with Jesus Christ, our life gets hard. The struggle against sin and flesh become more intense, and it seems never-ending. Moreover, being a Christian is also difficult because we are going against the current world around us. In John 15:19, Jesus said, “I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”
Furthermore, it is hard to be a Christian because Jesus tells us to deny ourselves and to take up the cross daily to follow Jesus. Being a Christian means that you have to give up your life, your fleshly desires, and your sinful way of life, and it is a tough call.
Yet, Christianity is Easy at the Same Time.
Jesus describes the Christian life as very hard, but also easy at the same time. Being a Christian is hard, and yet it is easy because your whole inner being is being transformed, and that is C.S. Lewis’s point in his book,Mere Christianity. He states that the whole aim of Christianity is the transformation of the human natureso that we can be drawn to the Father through the Son.
The Scripture also tells us that the aim of Christianity is the transformation of the inner being. In Roman 12:2, the apostle Paul says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” The apostle Paul tells Christians to be transformed through the renewing of the mind, and transformation involves those who were far from God being drawn near to Him through His blood (Ephesians Chapter 2 Verse13). The purpose of Christians being transformed by the renewing of the mind is to be drawn closer to God through His Son, Jesus Christ.It is true that being a Christian is hard, but we often fail to realize that trials and hardships are meant by God to transform us so that we can be drawn closer to Him.
The church of Christ also exists for the purpose of drawing men closer to God. Lewis writes, “The Church exists for nothing else but to draw men into Christ, to make them little Christs. If they are not doing that, all the cathedrals, clergy, missions, sermons, even the Bible itself, are simply a waste of time.” In other words, church activities such as preaching, teaching, studying the Bible, or evangelizing are often considered the end in themselves but in fact, they are only the instruments for the ultimate goal, which is the transformation of human nature. Furthermore, Lewis states that it is possible that the activities of the entire universe are geared toward the goal of drawing us to the Father through the Son.
As Christians, we should not be discouraged when life gets hard. Jesus clearly states that life is supposed to be hard. However, because it is hard, we will be drawn closer to God the Father through Jesus Christ.
Dat Nguyen is a student at the Master’s Seminary and a member of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles, California. His desire is to be a faithful minister of the Word of God. Heloves playing basketball and American football and watching movies.
Dat Nguyen is a student at the Master’s Seminary and a member of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles, California. His desire is to be a faithful minister of the Word of God. He loves playing basketball and watching movies.