I believe that one of the greatest sins of modern-American Christianity is the sin of laziness. We’re just not willing to work as hard as we’re going to have to work in order to reach our potential – in almost any area. And of those who are willing to work hard and do what it takes to be successful in their endeavors, few seem to invest that drive and energy and devotion to spiritual matters.
What we need is some good, old-fashioned diligence – in our spiritual lives.
Here are the Webster’s 1828 definitions for the word:
DILIGENCE, n. [L., to love earnestly; to choose.]
1. Steady application in business of any kind; constant effort to accomplish what is undertaken; exertion of body or mind without unnecessary delay or sloth; due attention; industry; assiduity.
Diligence is the philosophers stone that turns every thing to gold.
Brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure. 2 Peter 1.
2. Care; heed; heedfulness.
Keep thy heart with all diligence. Proverbs 4.
3. The name of a stage-coach, used in France.
And here’s a list of 19 things that the Bible says require diligence:
Exodus 15:26; Deuteronomy 28:1; Jeremiah 17:24, hearkening to the voice of God
Deuteronomy 11:13, hearkening to God’s commandments
Deuteronomy 6:17; 11:22, keeping God’s commandments
Joshua 22:5, taking heed to do the commandment and the law
Zechariah 6:15, obeying the voice of the Lord your God
Psalm 119:4, keeping God’s precepts
Deuteronomy 4:9, keeping your soul
Proverbs 4:23, keeping your heart
Jeremiah 12:16, learning God’s ways
Deuteronomy 6:7, teaching your children
Proverbs 27:23, knowing the state of your flocks
Deuteronomy 13:14; 17:4; 19:18, investigating accusations
Romans 12:8, exercising your God-given place of rule
1 Timothy 5:10, following every good work
Hebrews 11:6, seeking God
Hebrews 12:15, avoiding bitterness
2 Peter 1:5, adding to your faith
2 Peter 1:10, making your calling and election sure
2 Peter 3:14, being found in peace, without spot, and blameless