Thursday, June 27, 2024

Yes, It's Serious

Yes, It's Serious 
by David Brenneman 

‭"Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world. After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you. To Him be dominion forever and ever. Amen." 1 Peter 5:6-11.

The work of the Lord is serious business. The work of the Lord Jesus while on the Earth was to do the will of His Father in Heaven. He said that His Father was working and that He was joining Him in that work. Jesus also said to beseech the Lord of the Harvest to send out workers into the Harvest. The work didn't end when Jesus ascended! The work wasn't completed. The work was passed on to the Disciples who became the Apostles. They were training people in the Church to continue the work unto this day in which we live. This work will continue until the fullness of the Gentiles. Then it will again change its scope to those who will come to Christ during the Great Tribulation. That work is to seek and save the lost. The Spirit does the work in transforming us and using us to reach others. 

This is what we do when we come to Christ. It's not just about getting saved. It's not you and I getting a golden ticket to get out of Hell free. It's not that we get saved and can now go live as we please. 

It's our lives being spent becoming more and more like Christ. It's our desire to live out our faith in such a way that people see our good works and glorify our Father in Heaven. That they would have their own eyes opened to the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ alone that we too have found and have received. 

As I also read this morning, think about it: The soul of a child must be incredibly special and important if both God and Satan will fight over it.

We do ourselves harm when we do not take growing in Christ seriously. 

Soldiers in a battle do themselves no favors by taking off their protective gear or by throwing their offensive weaponry aside. 

In Christ we read in Ephesians 6 of the whole armor of God. Unlike what King Saul offered a very young David, that didn't fit, that he didn't know how to use. The whole armor of God for YOU fits like a glove. Isn't cumbersome or burdensome. It's just right and always fits throughout your life on Earth living for the Kingdom of God. 

So...what are you putting ahead of the righteous life that God desires for you? Hmm? 

We are all tempted towards things that will not help in growing in Christ. These things become the silky chains that bind and entangle the Believer. These are everything from worldly interests to possessions to pets to people.  

Satan prowls around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. He will use whatever he's been given permission to use against you. 

Let this sink in. He will use whatever he has been approved for against you by Jesus. This is primarily in the lives of Believers. I personally believe that, to a limited extent, in the lives of the unbelieving there's limits imposed because of the work of the Spirit of God in saving the lost of the world.  
There are, in fact, people among us that the Lord Jesus knows without a doubt that will reject His free gift of salvation. Limits are imposed to restrict their impact on those lives that He's at work in.

To the eyes of God there's over 8 billion chess pieces on this Earth. Everyone who breathes the breath of life. There's nothing more precious to God than the lives of people. What should be most precious to us?

Jesus didn't come, live a sinless life, to be beaten and crucified, resurrected 3 days later for any other part of His creation. Just people. 

What are we doing to grow in Christ to be useful to our Master, our Lord and Savior? Do you do as the Apostles taught? Do you spend intentional time in the Word and in prayer? Do you seek a deeper relationship with Jesus? Helping others as you were helped?  

What kind of Church would Jesus find when He returns if we were a bit more serious about what He says is important?  

We have an unparalleled opportunity in the accessibility of the Bible and Bible study tools than pretty much any other time in human history. Search out words and phrases in mere seconds that Bible scholars used to spend days, weeks, months and years discovering. We have such an amazing ample opportunity and most people in our Church's are not partaking of it.

We have the ability to be alone with Jesus and we are taught to do the opposite by the world's examples. 

Jesus indulged in solitude and silence with His Father a lot.  

What are you doing to take this life in Christ that you have seriously?

If you have been so blessed, are you helping to free other Believer's so that they might be in a position to bless others?  

If you have God given talents and abilities are you using them to further the Kingdom of God?  

We were given choice by the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Choice to live for Jesus or to not live for Jesus.  

When the works of our lives are tried by fire before Jesus, will anything remain of what we chose to engage in?  

There's indeed fun to be had in being serious about living for Jesus. Humor was created by God originally for His perfect world before the fall of mankind at the hands of Adam and Eve. We can indeed find satisfaction in engaging in those things that bring honor and glory to God. 

But until we step into those things, we're never going to know. 
Until we do indeed trust in the Lord with all our hearts and do not lean on our own understanding and in all our ways acknowledge Him, our paths will not be straight. 

Think about it. 

All NASB 1995 and NASB Scripture Excerpts used by permission. (C) Lockman Foundation.  

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