A form of godliness, but denying the power thereof… (2 Tim 3:5)
Paul predicts that perilous times will come when “men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5)
Even though we could spend all day on any single one of the characterizations in this list, the last one catches our attention. That is, those who have a form of godliness. Unfortunately, it is possible to act like a Christian and not actually be one. You can dress like a Christian. You can go to church like a Christian. You can quote scripture like a Christian. You can master all the outward expected demeanor of a Christian, and yet at the same time, not be truly converted. While it is possible to act like a Christian without being a Christian, it is not possible to be a Christian without acting like one. Hence, maturity in Christ is more than a matter of putting on a false garment of ecclesiastically acceptable behavior. It is a matter of putting on an awesome Christ and then allowing that Christ to grow in you and show through you more and more each day.