One observation that I've made is that our Evangelical Christian culture is consistently reaching outside of the "sufficiency of Christ" in order to do spirituality.
I'm going to use Colossians 2:19 as a foundational verse for my remaining thoughts.
IN HIM ALL THE FULNESS OF DEITY DWELLS IN BODILY FORM , AND IN HIM YOU HAVE BEEN MADE COMPLETE
The believer has in Christ every resource they need to face any trial, temptation, or matter of the soul. God the Father has given the Church all riches that are in Christ, including Scripture, prayer, the indwelling Holy Spirit, fellowship, baptism and the Lord's supper.
It seems that many unsuspecting believers are not aware of the truth of our Lord's sufficiency. This failure of modern Christians to understand and apply the riches that they have in Christ has opened the door to all kinds of hurtful and dangerous influences.
In short form, I'm going to list three major trends in the Church today that present as a direct attack on the sufficiency of Christ: psychology, pragmatism, and mysticism.
- Psychology - It is a sad commentary on the Church when many of the popular theories of secular psychology have been embraced and championed. It is a sad commentary on the Church when "Christian psychologists" become the champions of church counseling. It is a sad commentary on the Church when secular methods are adopted to help cure the souls ills, and the Scripture is viewed as being insufficient to meet the needs of the soul of man.
- Pragmatism - This is the old maxim that the ends justify the means---It seems that the Church is giving this maxim a "thumbs up." When the Church tries to replace the supernatural with "what works," or what is going to be popular with the people, the Church is in big trouble. When external success becomes the criterion for measuring spirituality the Church is in trouble. When the Church believes that it can accomplish spiritual goals by fleshly means and that the Scriptures are insufficient the Church is in big trouble.
- Mysticism - In application mysticism elevates individual feelings and personal experiences above the objective authority of Scripture. For example, the question, "What does the Bible mean to me? Has become more important than " What does the Bible mean?" Mysticism leads the individual into his own inner self, where self-actualization, self-authentication, intuition, and the weighing of feelings becomes as important as the authority of Scripture.
Take 11 Peter 1:3 and ask God to allow this truth to penetrate down deep into the soil of your soul---become confident that God the Father has give us everything that we need to grow and become like the Son:
By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence.