Monday, January 11, 2021
More than a belief that He is
More than a belief that He is
“These have no root.” Luke 8:13 KJV
My soul, examine yourself this morning by the light of this text. You have received the word with joy; your feelings have been stirred and a lively impression made. But, remember, that to receive the word in the ear is one thing, and to receive Jesus into your very soul is quite another. Superficial feelings are often joined to an inner hardness of heart, and that lively impression of the word is not always a lasting one. In Jesus’s parable (Luke 8:1–15), the seed in one case fell upon rocky ground, covered with only a thin layer of earth. When the seed began to take root, its downward growth was obstructed by the hard stone, so it spent its strength in pushing its green shoot up as high as it could. But unable to draw moisture and nourishment through its roots, it withered away. Is this my case? Have I been making a fair show in the flesh without having a corresponding inner life? Good growth takes place upward and downward at the same time. Am I rooted in sincere faithfulness and love to Jesus? If my heart remains unsoftened and unfertilized by grace, the good seed may germinate for a short time—but it must ultimately wither, because it cannot flourish on a rocky, unbroken, unsanctified heart. Let me dread a “godliness” as rapid in growth and lacking in endurance as Jonah’s plant (Jonah 4:6–7). Let me count the cost of being a follower of Jesus. Above all, let me feel the energy of His Holy Spirit. Then I shall possess an abiding and enduring seed in my soul. If my mind remains in its natural, stubborn insensitivity, and my heart in its hardness, they will—when the sun of trial scorches—help cast the heat the more terribly upon the ill-covered seed. My religion will soon die and my despair will be terrible. Oh, heavenly Sower, plow me first, and then cast the truth into me. Let me yield to you a bountiful harvest. -C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening
Oh my Dear Reader...take real time to contemplate what Spurgeon is saying.
For thousands of years the evidence is there that even the Demons believe...and shudder. Regardless of which demon, they all fall down before Jesus to His authority.
If even they have such a belief...yet are lost...what might your belief need to be?
As Jesus taught, the seeds of the Word must go deeper than the surface. There is a heart of stone that must be breached. A stone unlike any other.
I am often reminded of a scene from the movie "Left Behind". An Assistant Pastor crying out from the pulpit to God because He may have taught it, the roots of it never caused real change...he was left behind.
The horror of that is profound but not unprecedented. In Jesus's day one after another of the Jewish leaders, upon their passing, found themselves not with God but in Hades. After Jesus died and went down to Sheole to gather up those who were in Abraham's bosom, they could look across the chasm and see the one whom they rejected. The truth will be right between their eyes. They knew the entire Old Testament, supposedly taught it, yet it hadn't changed their hearts and minds.
There are so-called Preachers throughout the last 2,000 plus years that did not find themselves in Heaven at their death.
A changed heart is a sign that the Spirit moved in, not just a simple proclamation.
Saying "I believe!" Isn't enough. The consequences of mere belief vs true belief mean the difference between Heaven and Hell.
Is God on your heart and mind at all after you wake up? Is Talking with Jesus important to you at all? Is learning from truly Godly Men important to you? Does sin grieve you at all? Do you at all have a concern for the lost that drives you to pray for them? Is there any relationship between you and Jesus? Is there?
Are you looking forward to His return?
Are you looking at the times in which we live, looking for what Jesus said we would see that precludes His coming back?
There's not going to be any new revelations to this world. The Bible has all the information we will need to know about Jesus returning.
How deep is your belief? Jesus was with His Disciples for quite some time before that story we read of them in a boat. Jesus is asleep while the stormy weather happens. They panic and wake Him up. Their surface belief was about to go deeper. They finally began taking Him more than just at His Word. He turns to the winds and waves, "Hush! Be still!" And it was. Belief just went deeper.
Where is your heart today? Do you have a superficial belief? To read what Jesus says about that it ought to scare you. "Depart from Me, for I never knew you."
The Rapture has not happened yet. You still have time, my Friend, to cultivate a real relationship with Jesus. But just as what happened at the right time for Noah,when it was Jesus Himself who closed the door, so shall it be at the Rapture. He will give a shout, "Come home!" and that will be it. The Tribulation will begin. Christians and Jews will eventually become the greatest martyrs on the planet for 7 years. Oh it won't begin that way at first but the Bible says it quickly gets that way.
Where is your belief? Is it deeper than skin deep? Are there roots? Do you at all count the value of being in God's Word? Is it at all something you look forward to when you are in prayer with Him?
The fires in the Spiritual world are getting hotter. Evil isn't 'winning the day'. This world will SEE evil after the Holy Spirit steps aside after the Rapture.
A changed heart must be what's happened to you. If you place no great value in the things of God then you, my Friend, need to worry.