The common demand for loyalty from belief and disbelief
The common misunderstanding that only belief in Jesus demands loyalty is wrong! The reality is, disbelief also demands absolute loyalty, and at any cost. Sin energizes non-belief with crafty persuasion; saying you can believe whatever you want, just as long as it’s not Jesus as Lord. Sin seeks to imprison your thinking through deception by saying that even total rejection of all spiritual realities is better than having Christ as Saviour.
Honestly, there is no neutral ground when it comes to Jesus Christ. Satan knows there is no sitting on the fence, so he lies by saying that the spiritual fence has a wide and comfortable seat with no accountability or consequences. Your arch enemy wants you to think that going with the crowd is both fun and secure. What he won’t tell you is that “…the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few” (Matthew 7:13-14).
Loyalty is faithfulness
Loyalty is simply faithfulness. And faithfulness requires perseverance. Perseverance in non-belief pays death, while perseverance in belief pays eternal life. There is no escaping these realities. Don’t think for a moment that isolation from Jesus causes life to be sweet and comfortable. It just isn’t true. Delusion, escapism, or religion may provide some temporary easing of life’s pains, but eternal peace can only be found in Christ. The sad destination of disbelief in Christ is that “if we deny him, he also will deny us” (2 Timothy 2:12).
Notice how Jesus states His purpose for your loyalty; “I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide” (John 15:16). God’s design is for those people whom you lead to Christ should also remain faithful to Christ. There are no samples of faith, no test driving of faith; belief in Christ is for life, no turning back.
The Lord also provides sufficient resources enabling your loyalty. As He said to the Jews who had believed him; “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples” (John 8:31). God’s Word and God’s Holy Spirit equip you with the necessary inner resources to endure by remaining obedient in surrender to the Bible. Don’t be sucked into thinking you can live a joyful and righteous life without daily feeding on and growing in obedience to God’s Word; it just does not work that way.
Salvation grows faithfulness
From the first day of your repentance, successful Christian living acknowledges dependence upon Christ. There is to be no independence from Christ. “As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me” (John 15:4) were Jesus words. The best of God’s blessings come as you endure long term in loyalty to the Saviour for His glory and your joy.
A bad conscience or a sense of shame has no place in the believer’s life if they are living a Spirit controlled life. Jesus reassures you; if you “abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming” (1 John 2:28). I encourage you, committed loyalty to belief in Christ is eternally more valuable and God honouring than loyalty to disbelief. “…be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labour is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58).