Thursday, July 23, 2020
Really?!? Being real about sin...
You were like one of them. Obadiah 11
Edom owed Israel brotherly kindness in her time of need, but instead of that, the descendants of Esau joined with Israel’s enemies. In today’s Scripture, special stress is laid on the word You, like when Caesar cried, “and you Brutus?” A bad action may be all the worse because of the person who has committed it. We as Christians are the chosen favorites of heaven, so when we sin, we sin with an emphasis. Ours is a heinous offence, because we have been so particularly blessed. If an angel were to lay his hand on us when we were doing evil, he wouldn’t need to use any other rebuke than the question, “What, you? What are you doing?” We have been much forgiven, much delivered, much instructed, much enriched, much blessed—do we dare put our hands to evil? God forbid! Dear reader, a few minutes of confession may be beneficial to you this morning. Have you never been like the wicked? Have you heard people laughing at evil things and didn’t really find the joke offensive? You were like one of them. When the ways of God were described with insults, and you were bashful and silent, you were like one of them. When worldly people were taking advantage of others in the marketplace, were you like one of them? When they were pursuing wealth and power like a hunter after game, were you as greedy as they were? Could anyone see a difference them and you? Is there any difference? Here we are stepping on toes. Be honest with your own soul, and make sure you are truly a new creature in Christ Jesus. Then, when this is sure, live very carefully so that nobody should be able to say again, You were like one of them. You wouldn’t want to share their eternal doom, so why be like them here? Don’t join in their secrets, or you may come into their ruin. Side with the afflicted people of God, not with the world.
- C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening
Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God
who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.
Salvation is not an event; it is a process. Salvation is God's gift, for there is nothing we can do to save ourselves (Eph. 2:8–9). Yet with salvation comes the responsibility to work out our salvation. Once we have been saved, we must claim all that has become ours.
Through salvation, God gave you victory over sin. That victory applies not only to past sins but also to every sin you will ever commit. When you became a Christian, God made you a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17). God wants to continually build new things into your life as you walk with Him. God gave you His joy when He saved you, and He wants to fill you with His joy daily. When you first repented of your sin, you relinquished your right to your life. God continues to ask you to yield your will to Him and to follow His leading rather than setting your own direction for your life. When you were converted, God made everything available to you; how you implement what He has given you is your choice (2 Pet. 1:3–9).
This is the great paradox of the Christian life. We are to work diligently on our faith, yet always with the awareness that only God can bring about lasting change in our lives. As we see God at work in us, we are motivated to work even more diligently. God will not force His changes upon us; neither can we bring about lasting change in our lives apart from the work of the Holy Spirit. When you sense God developing an area of your life, join Him in His activity so that His salvation will be demonstrated fully in you.
- Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day
Today has two devotionals in it. Both seem to work together. We as a culture seem to do a lot of 'looking the other way' at sin. Justifying our thoughts and actions in the name of personal reasons to patriotism, having done it before, to other excuses. We cannot excuse our sin.
It's very much a message for me as it is for any who read this. I used to look on others in real disgust when I heard them say they can't say anything, they used to do that too. So that's a major copout. That's not stepping up to see that the person needing taught or corrected is recieving such. If all Scripture is inspired by God for teaching, reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness. ..then why are believers so reluctant to use it for that? Why wouldn't they want to be adequate, equipped for every good work?
Are you even reading your Bible at all? Is it part of your day? Week? Month? The last two leave me stunned that for some Christians that's all the time they choose to give the one who died to save them!
You go through life stressed yet think that only an occasional prayer might get you through the crisis? You only return to God when there is a problem you can't handle? Then once He does handle it you are back to your sinful ways?
Dear reader, repeated living a sin is called a practiced sin. Read in Romans. Paul specifically taught that we ought not live a life of practiced sin. In Matthew Jesus said we ought not excuse sin either. We are to make sure we take care of the sin in our lives before we tell anybody else how to deal with the sin in theirs. Satan really got a good one when he got someone to coin the phrase 'you shouldn't judge'. That one phrase probably has done more damage than most other deceptions within the Church!
You believe that 'you shouldn't judge!' statement then you, my friend, have believed a lie! You have indeed been deceived by Satan! If you had read your Bible you would know and understand the truth. We are indeed to be wise in Christ. Not to delve into the sins we observe in others. We DO need to make a judgment about what we see in others in order to be able to know where in the Scriptures to lead such a one on a path back to righteousness. You can't point the way if you aren't able to because you have never read the manual. Would you trust someone who walked off the street, who has never seen the inside of a human body, before you would trust the Doctor who has a degree and experience in a surgery you need? You need to be in God's Word.
My friend we cannot keep silent on sin. Sin was such a problem in the whole history of mankind that it brought about Jesus Christ being crucified. His love for you held Him on that cross, not the nails. His love for you held Him there when the Father poured His wrath out upon His own Son in your place. Sin should not be excused.
Read the book of Acts carefully. People confessed their sins, repented, and were saved, by the thousands. Confession is to admit that God is right. Repentance means to turn away from it. Not excuse it.
We as a Church were empowered by the power of the Cross. Scripture says that the gates of Hell would not be able to handle the onslaught of the Church. Where is that power today? Where are the prayers of God's people? Are you praying?
Are you at all more concerned about your standing before a Holy God than you are the people you surround yourself with?
We are indeed to work out our Salvation. That work includes being in the Bible.
That work includes being in prayer.
That work includes not being silent about sin. Jesus wasn't silent about it. Many times the people He exposed were 'cut to the quick'. Meaning He sliced right through their excuses and exposed what was there.
Look at how you deal with sin.
Look at how you haven't dealt with sin.
Will Jesus find the faith? Will He find people living out a life for Him?