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Bible Ballistics: BBs  #379 Where Is Your Cross?

 

As we look around at our world it grieves me to see so many who claim the name of Jesus, but just that; they claim His name for their own reasons, without any regard for the One who gave His life on the cross for our salvation. They have no desire for a personal relationship with Jesus, but seem to only desire the benefit that can be gained from the use of HIS Holy name, or from His people. What are we to do? Jesus told us long ago about that question, and it’s one that we won’t be able to answer, except as we trust our lives to Him and follow where He leads. While we are called to stand for truth, and against blatant sin and disregard of the Holy Scriptures, we cannot always tell the real from the fake. But God can!

Nevertheless the foundation of God

standeth sure,

having this seal,

The Lord knoweth them that are his.

And, Let every one that nameth the name

of Christ

depart from iniquity.”    2 Timothy 2:19

I have been fooled by some, I’ve been disappointed by some, and I’ve been greatly encouraged by the genuine and living faith of others. Our job is to follow the shepherd and feed the sheep, even the ‘pretenders’. We can’t force-feed those who aren’t hungry because they’ve gorged on the swill of the world, or those who are repulsed by the Word of God that we offer; but our job is the same as Jesus called Peter to before He ascended.

Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine. And none of the disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord. 13 Jesus then cometh, and taketh bread, and giveth them, and fish likewise. 14 This is now the third time that Jesus shewed himself to his disciples, after that he was risen from the dead.

15 So when they had dined,

Jesus saith to Simon Peter,

Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me

more than these?

He saith unto him, Yea, Lord;

thou knowest that I love thee.

He saith unto him,

Feed my lambs.

16 He saith to him again the second time,

Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me?

He saith unto him, Yea, Lord;

thou knowest that I love thee.

He saith unto him,

Feed my sheep.

17 He saith unto him the third time,

Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved

because he said unto him

the third time,

Lovest thou me?

And he said unto him,

Lord, thou knowest all things;

thou knowest that I love thee.

Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.”  John 21:12-17

Without going into the depths of this marvelous encounter that Peter had with our Lord, I want us to focus on the simple way that the Master restored ‘Peter the sheep’! And as He led Peter through this exercise of soul-searching, He gave Him only one command, “Feed my sheep”!! The lambs—the young, inexperienced, head-strong lambs; the older sheep—the head-butting ones, the grumpy ones, the hungry ones, the cast-down ones—Jesus called Peter to “Feed my sheep”! And we are to feed the sheep, but we can only share what we have received, leaving the “herd” selection to the Master. Jesus told us about this, in the parable of the wheat and the tares—He knows it all!!!

Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: 25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. 26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. 27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? 28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?

29 But he said, Nay;

lest while ye gather up the tares,

ye root up also the wheat with them.

30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers,

Gather ye together first the tares,

and bind them in bundles to burn them:

but gather the wheat into my barn.”   Matthew 13:24-30

Jesus knows the wheat (His own sheep) and the tares (The wolves in ‘sheep’s clothing’), and He will render a just verdict of reward. The verdict is based on what you/I do with Jesus, the One who died to save us and give eternal life to all who will come! Only you can decide what you will do with the cross: will yours be only a piece of jewelry, with no love or commitment to the One who died on it; or have you come to Jesus, taking up your cross and following HIM? “Jesus Christ, and him crucified”—He’s MY choice?