Today many with Christian beliefs embark on a journey that has been programmed into us as necessity since birth. The attendance of a public or private college is a path often taken by today’s young people. We are taught that without these institutions, we somehow become less of a success in life, less of a person, lower on the socio-economic totem pole. Therefore for many it is without question that we must attend a college to acquire success in life. While there are many benefits to attending college, there are also many hurdles, obstacles and stumbling blocks presented to the college Christian, things that should be exhaustively considered and weighed. While the idea of “higher education” sounds great, the atmosphere of college life carries much more baggage than some may expect. In this post, I will share my own extremely personal experiences with college life, which I pray will help you to see more clearly the temptations and decisions that are at your doorstep. First let’s talk about what it means to be a college Christian.
Defining ‘College Christian’
A college Christian, is a young person typically that has graduated high school, has been accepted to a college and now attends that college, has already repented of all sin against God (disobedience of the law of God), has been reborn in water, has received the Holy Spirit, and has chosen a path of walking with Christ according to the guidance of the Holy Spirit in obedience to the commandments of both the Father and the Son. This is a true Christian. They seek no longer to disobey God, rather to obey God and to walk in His ways. They have a constant relationship with Jesus- they talk to him constantly and consult with Him in all of their affairs. They also typically are more studious in learning the Word of God, than they are concerning anything else. They aren’t perfect, but are always quick to repent and correct their errors. These are those that are truly reborn. If this is you- than you are a college Christian!
Please note- if you have never truly repented for your sins (turned away from them and changed your mind concerning them, towards the mind of Christ), whether you have attended a Christian church your entire life or not, you must repent. If you live in sin and constantly willfully choose to sin knowing that it is sin, you CANNOT have communion with Christ. Many young people who believe themselves to be Christians can be found in the condition of “not knowing Christ.” It is not enough that you “believe” in Christ- even Satan and his fallen angels and demons believe in Him. It means nothing to believe in Christ if you haven’t taken the next step of Holy Spirit filled obedience. Those that have “believed” in Jesus and confessed Him with their mouth, yet have continued in willful sin knowing that it is sin without true repentance- these also can be found in the condition of “not knowing Christ.”
“And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.“ ~ 1 John 2:3-6
If you go off to college and you’ve never truly repented for your sin, and your identity has never truly been transformed to the identity of Christ walking according to the Holy Spirit, than typically you will look the same as the world. You will talk like the world, walk like the world, enjoy the filthy movies, books and entertainment of the world, you will enjoy the raunchy TV shows of the world, engage in the same partying, drunkenness and addictions of the world, and you will engage in the promiscuity and frequently changing sexual partners (both heterosexual and homosexual) that the world offers and promotes. How can I make this statement? Because when I was in college, I called myself “Christian,” but I walked in the things of the world. I had never truly repented for my sins, and even though I knew that what I was doing was sin, I continued in it. I encouraged it. I glorified it. I was lost. I found college to be a place where every single evil thing that is warned against in the Bible is not only available but also generally accepted and glorified. Only the true “College Christian” would have a fighting chance in such an atmosphere. Are you a true college Christian? In this next section, I will tell you about my personal experience with college. You will find that I clearly was lost, not truly a “college Christian,” rather an imposter. I fooled others, but was never able to fool myself. In my time in college, not one person (with the exception of my God-fearing parents) that I came into contact with throughout my entire college experience told me the cold, hard truth- all of it. In religion, many topics involving the reality of sin nature are taboo, as are the effective teachings of repentance and spiritual warfare. I don’t fault them for this, as to tell the truth you would have to have the truth. Today, I’d like to tell you the truth.
College- Where Black & White Do Not Exist
One of the first introductions I had into “college culture” was prior to my attending a major university. I was visiting the university and was invited to a block party. Speaking as a young person who was not born again- I thought wow, look what I’ve been missing out on. The freedom! The uninhibited drinking of whatever alcoholic beverage I wanted. The access to many young women that not only were single and available, but were also open to wide ranging sexual activities inappropriate to someone unmarried. Drugs also were available for anyone to come and freely take part. Such freedom! It was exhilarating in my youth to experience this kind of freedom at just about every “party” I’d attend. Not only that- people of all kinds wanted to talk to me and accepted me as I was. I felt a part of the group, a part of the college, and a part of the experience of all of these things. Oh how I felt so good……..yet a small voice remained in me that said- “something isn’t right here.” Unfortunately that voice was not loud enough for me to halt my activities. I continued in the college culture. I’d attend church regularly, though missing church many times due to my late night drinking activities. Why did I attend church, you ask? Because that is what Christians do, isn’t it? So I thought. I was convinced that no matter what my college activities looked like, as long as I attended church I was in good standing with God. This I know today to be a lie from the deceiver, but more on this later. The “party” begins to consume you. I began to live life for the next party, the next gathering, the next drinking event. Any approaching party would be the highlight of my week. I became obsessed with working-out and improving my body/my looks- so as to attract women and improve my choices. I was totally focused on my flesh and the things of the flesh. I neglected the fact that obedience to the law of God protects us from pain, drama, suffering, shame, loneliness and anguish. I thought- ‘bring it on, I want to feel everything.’ That is something else they teach you in college- just go out and experience everything for yourself. Such is the wisdom of fools. So I went out wanting to experience everything. Hear me when I say- I LIVED FOR THE PARTY! This was my idol. This was the highlight of my life. To be totally honest, though constantly seeking the next party, the next opportunity to meet women, drink, etc., I consistently went home feeling alone (regardless of relationships), ashamed, in emotional pain, and many times even depressed. I sought companionship in women and relationships, and neglected the only companion that truly fulfills- that is a relationship with my savior Jesus Christ. No matter who I was with, no matter how much “fun” I had, no matter what thrill or new experience occurred, I went home feeling alone, incomplete, wanting, and lost. It turned into a never ending cycle of insanity….. loneliness, to the party, to the drinking, to the college friends, to the inappropriate interactions with women, to the church, back to lonely. Nothing that college had to offer me satisfied my loneliness. Every activity surrounding the party provided me with a TEMPORARY high, followed by an unprecedented low. Why?
“But she that lives in pleasure, is dead while she lives.” ~ 1 Timothy 5:6
I lived in pleasure and because of this, I was dead while I lived. I was separated from my God, and I had no connection or relationship to the author of salvation. I was full of sin and had no repentance in me. I was rebellious and blind. Dead. Looking back I can really understand how it feels to be the walking dead. There was an emptiness within me that nothing could fill. I sought fulfillment in lusts and pleasures, drinking, parties, relationships, etc- yet would come out more empty than when I began. They say you will seek God when you hit rock bottom, but that wasn’t true either. I had hit rock bottom over and over and over again. I hadn’t heard the gospel, the true good news about Jesus and rebirth. I hadn’t heard about what true rebirth was, or seen what true repentance looked like. I hadn’t experience the love of Christ in my life. Yes I had religion, but religion couldn’t save me. Christ was the ONLY one who was able to break the chains of my sin, and would eventually save me from my sin and confusion. I was a Christian in word, but not in deed. Had only I studied the Word of God as much or more than I studied the lusts of the eyes, the lusts of flesh, I could have avoided much heartache and pain. I watched dark and disturbing movies and TV shows regularly which only led further to my moral degradation. I would frequently watch MTV, with its racy and sexually charged reality shows.
My sense of right and wrong became extremely warped. I turned to pornography as it was so easily available in college culture. Again, pornography comes with many false promises- just like any other worldly and sinful thing. It promises privacy, sexual fulfillment without the complications of marriage or a relationship, the fulfillment of every evil thought and fantasy one could muster up all while preserving your reputation as a good Christian boy. It also bears the promise that no one will get hurt as only I will know about it. Not only were all of these lies, but this alone turned out to be the most destructive evil of anything that I had ever experienced. It seers the conscience in a way like no other. It warps your perception of reality, damages your relationships, creates in you a constant lustful eye, and severely darkens your integrity and character. Why? Because it is done in hiding. Integrity is not doing what you have a right to do, rather it means to do the right thing- even when no one is looking. I knew my integrity, character, and moral barometer had been destroyed. No one else knew, but I sure knew. This damaged my self esteem, my self worth, and even my own self confidence. Why did it hit my confidence? Because I had reached a point in college where I couldn’t stop. I was a prisoner, chained to this evil. Those that surrounded me never condemned pornography. It was normal under “college culture.” This was a prison that I didn’t escape until I pled with God for help and freedom from these chains. He was faithful to deliver me from them, even though I didn’t deserve it. This was my first experience with true repentance, and true transformation. When I was freed, the desire to look at porn went away. I was no longer chained to it. I could say no, even when I was alone.
In college I was exposed to young women having abortions even as a form of birth control. I had multiple female friends that were the victim of either date rape, or drugged rape. Many popped pills for various purposes- muscle gain, weight loss, prescription drug abuse, etc. I personally experienced an addiction to the “legal” drug ephedra, a work-out supplement that would give extreme results at the gym. It took me some time to realize that this particular drug brought me a lot more than just muscle growth and cutting up. It made me extremely hyper, I became more aggressive and my personality would completely change. It altered who I was, and I relied on this drug to bring me results that I should have only depended on my Creator for. This too was done in secret, searing the conscience. There is a term for this sin in the Bible…..in the original Greek, the word is “pharmakeia” (Galatians 5:20) sometimes translated as sorcery, however the root word points to drug-related sorcery. Taking a drug to receive a desired result. It is the same as drinking a potion in witchcraft to receive a desired result. Notice how this root word is found in today’s word “pharmacy.” I found myself chained to this addiction for a number of years. Again only by the Grace of Jesus were my chains broken. Such addictions are common in colleges, and even thought to be ok and normal. Some take pills to sleep, some take pills to stay awake, some take both. I was programmed in college to value, to desire and to seek money, the biggest paycheck, belongings, the bigger home, fancy car, wealth and prestige, also known to Bible readers as “coveting.” Such is the path of a never ending dissatisfaction with the things that God provides. Some pastors claim that attending college is a must, and will help you to serve God in greater ways (as you will have more money.) I ask- where in the Bible is money required for serving God in greater ways? The Son of God owned nothing. The Apostles were also not wealthy by worldly standards, rather poor. The Kingdom of God doesn’t function on earthly money. These teachings are misleading, damaging, and they belittle the power of the Holy Spirit in the work of God. These are just some of my personal experiences with the “college life.” There are so many things that will be thrown at the college student, that absent of a true relationship with Christ, you will be lost. Life in college is rampant with drunkenness, drug use, addiction, premarital sex, partying, trouble making, rebellion, rape, sexual abuse, verbal abuse, pornography, theft, lying, improper and inappropriate relationships, idolatry, lust, and the list goes on…all in the name of receiving a “higher education” or the “college experience.” Sounds rigged if you ask me. Attending a church once or twice a week will not gain you salvation! You must choose daily to walk with Jesus and according to the Word of God! If He isn’t a part of your life every day, you are missing it! Church life can be a great plus in terms of fellowship with other believers, but it will not bring you salvation. Seek JESUS!
As a Christian college student, you are embarking on an extremely challenging and difficult situation. You will be tempted to lower your standards and to lower your guard. You will be persuaded to open your mind to philosophies and vain deceits of all kinds. You will be pressured by your peers like never before without the oversight of a concerned parent. You may be branded as “close-minded” in many cases for simply choosing to believe in the written Word of God. Your character and integrity will be tested to the limit. More than ever, the true Christian student will have to seek out the Word of God, that warns against so many things that are thought “normal” in establishments of higher education. Pray constantly that God can alert your senses to evil and danger, and WALK WITH HIM. Don’t let your college experience be like mine. See it as an opportunity to win souls for Christ. Challenge the thinking of your peers with the Word of God. Know the Word and be prepared to defend it in your debates and discussions. Be the light that will shine in an exceedingly dark place. Heal the sick! Pray for those that will make fun of you and persecute you for your belief in Jesus. Learn from my mistakes rather than your own- this is true wisdom!
Realize IT IS NOT OK!
In college, you will be fed lie after lie. Your sin will be accepted, laughed about, glorified and shared with others. I want to tell you the truth, because I lacked truth in my experience. Realize, its not ok to sleep with a woman/man before marriage. It is not ok to “hook up” with random strangers or multiple partners. It is not ok to engage in one-night-stands. It is not ok nor is it funny to drink until you can’t speak or walk without help. It is not ok to gather for the purpose of getting drunk. It is not ok to do drugs and fog your brain out creating an unsound mind. It is not ok to be hooked on any drug. It is not ok to look at pornography. it is not ok to lust after anything in this life. It is not ok to treat young women or men as sexual objects. It is not ok to constantly entertain yourself with things containing messages or actions that oppose God’s word. It is not ok to have inappropriate relationships, friends with benefits or anything of this nature. It is not ok to take advantage of someone who cannot fend for themselves in any particular moment. It is not ok to glorify evil. It is not ok to fight or become violently angry with one or the other. It is not ok to gossip and speak evil of others no matter what they are doing. It is not ok to cause drama out of selfish pride. It is not ok to entertain every idol, philosophy, and thought that comes your direction that is in opposition to the Word of God. It is not ok to go to a strip club to lust after men or women on display. These are all SINS against your and my Creator. The result of these sins are loneliness, depression, isolation, insecurity, a depraved mindset, moral degradation, feeling dirty, unworthy, unloved, used, unholy, delusional, sad, incomplete, unsatisfied, constantly confused, lost and floundering. These sins carry with them extremely harsh consequences up to and including death both physically and spiritually. If you willfully do these things, you cannot inherit the Kingdom of God! You cannot willfully do these things, and have a relationship with the Father or with our Savior Jesus Christ at the same time. It won’t work, no matter how many lies you choose to believe.
“For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?“ ~ Hebrews 10:26-29
If you are currently attending college, and you find yourself buried in many sins- drowning spiritually- please hear this truth. Your sins that are done in secret are seen plainly and clearly by God. We can’t hide anything from Him. Please know that I do not and cannot judge you. I know the weaknesses of my own flesh through the years and have no grounds to condemn any human being without also condemning myself. I can advise you though from experience, that you can find freedom if you truly believe in Jesus Christ and repent of your sins. This doesn’t mean saying sorry to God every week and continuing in your sin. There is no forgiveness in that. Hear me- THERE IS NO FORGIVENESS IN THAT! Such behavior is like “stomping on the Son of God.” Repentance is the realization that you truly are lost, sinful, living for your flesh, and you don’t want to anymore. You change your mind concerning the sinful activities you’ve been engaged in. You are ready to change and transform to a life in obedience to our Savior Jesus Christ and both His and God’s commandments. This is known as “Baptism in the name of the Father.” True repentance is the key. This was the baptism that John the Baptist introduced. Next you must be baptized also in the name of the Son, a baptism of water immersion where ALL of these sins that you are repenting of are washed away in the blood of Christ. You rise out of the water into a new life with Him! Next you must be baptized with the Holy Spirit, which can be received through several methods found at the attached link. The Holy Spirit is the helper, the teacher, the comforter, and it will lead you into all TRUTH. It will accompany you in your study of the Word of God, and it will teach you mysteries in the Word. It will work through you to heal the sick, cast out demons, and share the gospel with those around you in a supernatural way. You will begin to walk according to the Holy Spirit rather than your flesh, and you will be given new eyes to see many things differently. You will begin to see things as God sees them. You will begin to bear fruits that are holy! I encourage you to take this path of true freedom. Having lived in sin for many years, I know what it is like to be a prisoner to many things. I can testify to you that you don’t have to be a prisoner any longer. Believe in Jesus, the ONLY one that can save us from our sin- and be REBORN! Become a true College Christian today! Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you need help or support. Below are some Bible verses that may help to guide you through many of the issues presented in this blog post.
Some Guidance from the Word Of God
“Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” ~ Ephesians 5:17-18
“Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit. Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” ~ 1 Corinthians 5:15-20
“Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” ~ Galatians 5:19-21
“Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise” ~ Proverbs 20:1
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” ~ 1 Peter 5:8
“Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things.” ~ Proverbs 23:29-33
“Whoever loves pleasure will be a poor man; he who loves wine and oil will not be rich.” ~ Proverbs 21:17
“Whoredom, wine, and new wine, which take away the understanding.” ~ Hosea 4:11
“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” ~ Revelation 21:8
Ask yourself, Could Jesus say this to you today? “You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. he was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” ~ John 8:44
Other Verses concerning various issues- 2 Timothy 4:5, Isaiah 28:7, 1 Corinthians 3:17, 1 Corinthians 6:19, 1 Peter 4:7, Proverbs 23:20-21, 1 Corinthians 6:10, and there are MANY more. Get in the Word of God today if you desire to know truth!