Why do people change? I understand that some change is not negative, some change is positive, sometimes we change for the better. But I mean, why is it that Christians who have been faithful for so long, they change? They change philosophy, they change position, they change their standing, they change their methodology possibly even. And like I said, not all change is negative.

But I’m talking specifically, why is it that some Christians seem to change and the change is negative? I think part of that answer is found here at least in Galatians chapter 5. I read this verse today and it just convicted me, it reminded me of how important it is that we watch who we run with. Because here’s what the Bible said, you did run well. So you were in this thing, you were going the right direction, you were serving God. You were pressing on the upward way and gaining ground for the gospel. You were doing well, you ran and you ran well. But it said, who did hinder you that you should not obey the truth?

You can take any person, if they would admit it, who has changed positions, changed their standing for the negative. And take them back along the storyline of their change and that story will somehow sooner or later come to a who? A who, a person, an individual, a book, a blog, a message, a conference, a gathering, a college, an influence. The who is an influence. You and I need to guard against influence.

A wise man said, I can control who I allow to get close to me. But once I allow them close, I have no control on how they influence me. And it is wise for you and I to keep walls and keep boundaries in place when it comes to influence. It just takes one book. It just takes one fellowship. It just takes one text and phone call. It just takes one season of reading an article. I’m not being super narrow and dogmatic. I’m not saying that you ought not be wide read and wide studied. I am saying you ought to be wise read and wise studied and wise about your fellowship. Or you and I one day will be, in this verse, one who ran well but a who hindered us. Something got in the way.

Maybe you’re watching this video today and you’ve allowed some negative influence into your life. And it’s starting to veer you off course and you’re not running well as you did. And maybe it’s you and you found yourself all the way there. And you’re not what you used to be. And you can see it and you’ll be honest about it and say, You know what, Brother Cooper? I’m wrong in this thing. Well, listen, today’s the day to get it right.

And I want to challenge you Christians who are running faithfully. Let’s finish this course with joy. Let’s be faithful until we see Jesus face to face. And we’ll have to be careful. You did run well. I don’t want that to be said of you. And I don’t want that said of me. God help us. May this be a help in your Christian life today.

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