Bible Ballistics: Vol. 10 No.10 HIS Way Or Mine???
We talked last week about the truth of scripture that “every knee shall bow” before The Lord Jesus when He returns! I’d like us to continue in that vein of thought and I ask each of us to “consider your ways”! Those who claim to know Jesus, need to be sure that we are walking in the way that Jesus calls us to walk; we need to examine our own hearts and lives each day and be sure that we are God’s, being what He wants us to be, and doing that which pleases HIM.
whether ye be in the faith;
prove your own selves.
Know ye not your own selves,
how that Jesus Christ is in you,
except ye be reprobates?” 2 Corinthians 13:5
This is a call to be certain that we know our genuine spiritual state! It doesn’t matter what others may think of us, what matters is what God knows about us, and that we truly know HIM. And when we know Him, we can be sure of our relationship by His Spirit, which dwells within us.
“So then they that are in the flesh
cannot please God.
9 But ye are not in the flesh,
but in the Spirit,
if so be that the Spirit of God
dwell in you.
Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ,
he is none of his.
10 And if Christ be in you,
the body is dead because of sin;
but the Spirit is life
because of righteousness.” Ro. 8:8-10
The Word God makes it clear that those who belong to Jesus, have the Holy Spirit of God dwelling within them, and by His presence we can truly know whose we are!
“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:” Romans 8:16
“Nevertheless the foundation of God
having this seal,
The Lord knoweth them that are his.
And, Let every one
that nameth the name
depart from iniquity.” 2 Timothy 2:19
God knows those who are His own, those who have been born again by the Spirit of God. But we must be sure that we belong to Him, that we have received the new life in Christ by grace through faith in His redeeming blood!
“He came unto his own,
and his own received him not.
12 But as many as received him,
to them gave he power
to become the sons of God,
even to them that believe
on his name:
13 Which were born,
not of blood,
nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man,
but of God.” John 1:11-13
God brings new birth to those who come to Jesus in repentance and faith, giving us life by the death of Jesus.
“And you hath he quickened, (made alive)
who were dead in trespasses and sins;
2 Wherein in time past ye walked
according to the course
of this world,
according to the prince
of the power of the air,
the spirit that now worketh
in the children of disobedience:
3 Among whom also we all
had our conversation
in times past
in the lusts
of our flesh,
fulfilling the desires
of the flesh
and of the mind;
and were by nature
the children of wrath,
even as others.
4 But God,
who is rich in mercy,
for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead
hath quickened us
together with Christ,
(by grace ye are saved😉”. Ephesians 2:1-5
God takes lost sinners and makes them saints, and calls us to know Him and walk in His way—yet HE repeatedly calls us to “consider your ways”! In the book of Haggai, God called His people Israel to do what they had said they would do; to obey Him and do HIS work not their own. These people had returned to the land of Judah, and the city of Jerusalem from the land of Babylon in order to rebuild the temple and the city of God. The people had been called to obey God and rebuild HIS temple, but they had become distracted, and were so busy taking care of themselves, that they neglected to trust God and do HIS will! Instead they had put ‘self’ first—as we often do!
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God,
and his righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you.
34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow:
for the morrow shall take thought
for the things of itself.
Sufficient unto the day
is the evil thereof.” Matthew 6:33-34
We are called to “seek” Jesus first, to follow Him and trust Him in all our ways. In the Model Prayer, Jesus reminds us that our heart’s focus is to be on God—always! Let’s take a look and see what Jesus calls us to do! Watch the pronouns and where Jesus says our allegiance ought to be.
“After this manner therefore pray ye:
which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come. (God’s kingdom!)
Thy will be done (God’s will!)
as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day (God’s provision!)
our daily bread.
12 And forgive us (God’s forgiveness!)
as we forgive
13 And lead us not into temptation, (HIS Lead!)
but deliver us from evil: (HIS provision!)
For thine is the kingdom, (HIS kingdom!)
and the power, (HIS power!)
and the glory, (HIS glory!)
for ever. (ALWAYS!)
Amen.” Matthew 6:6:9-13
Our allegiance is to God—first, foremost and always; to HIS kingdom, not our own; to HIS will, not our own, to HIS perfect provision in all! It reminds me of another passage.
“Trust in the LORD
with all thine heart;
and lean not
unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways
and he shall direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise
in thine own eyes:
fear the LORD,
and depart from evil.
8 It shall be health to thy navel,
and marrow to thy bones.” Proverbs 3:5-8
We can only live a spiritually profitable life for God, when we put all our “trust” in HIM, when we “lean not” on our own understanding; when we “acknowledge HIM”; trusting HIM to direct our paths! We cannot trust in our own wisdom, but we must learn to totally trust in God’s wisdom, following His leading and the prompting of HIS Spirit–not our own or the worlds. Let’s hear what God had to say through Haggai!
“Then came the word of the LORD by Haggai the prophet, saying,
4 Is it time for you,
to dwell in your cieled houses,
and this house lie waste?
5 Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts;
Consider your ways.” Haggai 1:5
What are we choosing to do with our lives: what we want to do, or what God has called us to do: His way or ours?
“Thus saith the LORD of hosts;
Consider your ways.
8 Go up to the mountain,
and bring wood,
and build the house;
and I will take pleasure in it,
and I will be glorified,
saith the LORD.” Haggai 1:7-8
The question that you and I must answer is, “Are we following our God, and doing what HE calls us to do; or are we doing our own thing?” Are we trying to please the world, by popularity, prominence, or wealth? Or are we choosing God’s will? Will you “consider your ways”? We must ask God to search us so that we might walk right before HIM, being cognizant of our own hearts and minds, considering how to truly reflect Jesus to the world, not self! We are living in perilous times; it is imperative that we stand fast!
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous,
disobedient to parents,
3 Without natural affection,
despisers of those that are good,
lovers of pleasures
more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness,
but denying the power thereof:
from such turn away.” 2 Timothy 3:1-5
Consider that last phrase, “from such turn away”! Are we turning away from the evil, or are we trying to accommodate the evil, and make it palatable? Jesus told us, and Paul reiterates here, that we will be “despised” for following HIM—for living ‘righteous’ by HIS blood and HIS Word!
“For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21
We can only be ‘good’/‘righteous’ by the blood of Jesus, when He saves us by His grace, through HIS substitutionary, atoning sacrifice on the cross! Only One way—only One Savior. And when He saves us He gives us HIS Spirit to dwell within us, to enable us to reflect the ‘fruit of the Spirit’ rather than the ‘works of the flesh’. Let’s ask God to examine our hearts to see what is really there—the Spirit of Jesus or the spirit of the world. Take some time this week to read Galatians 5:16-26 and examine your heart in light of the contrast! Then may we each lift up to God one of the simplest, yet greatest prayers in all of scripture:
“Search me, O God,
and know my heart:
and know my thoughts:
24 And see if there be any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23-24
Amen and Amen!!!