The church may possibly be anesthetized to a simple truth which would offer incredible impact if we were not so numb to it. We have espoused a doctrine that isn't completely wrong; but the way we use it has short-sheeted Christian impact in one community after another.
I speak of the teaching-ones-neighbor influence of be baptized to go to heaven. Heaven has been a consistent and strong thrust of one-on-one Bible studies among us. I have done so for years. In general a bulk of the church has been taught to be obedient unto salvation, so that when one dies, heaven will be the ultimate reward.
What this has done is dull the saved's senses to needed action while alive. These sit in pews checking off their dutiful lists with one thing in mind; don't mess up so that heaven will not be missed.
This half-doctrine insensitizes believers. Their main goal is not to die lost. That's it!
With this mistaken backdrop ears go deaf to repeated calls for service, love your neighbors, and shine for God now. Heaven is the ultimate goal as the church has been trained to preserve it's own and individual necks for salvation. Ministry to others is a foreign language to far too many.
If I thought faith meant to be baptized so that I would be saved when I die, I too would resent having to put in my time on Sunday mornings sipping, singing, and sitting when I could be at the golf course. But this is not what Father has in mind for us.
God has called us to robust lives which indeed make an enormous difference. We aren't on a dull path to endure church assemblies! Rather, we are on a magnificent mission to help the helpless transfer boring and dead lives into extreme spirit makeovers for the moment.
Life doesn't come after the cemetery. It takes on entirely new and prosperous action as soon as we meet Jesus in the grave of baptism. May we shed the dulling affects of being baptized to go to heaven by focusing upon a reverse truth; the nature of heaven has come to us and to our paths for extravagant actional impact....now.
Jesus came down...and heaven filled our souls.