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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 12 No.26 Confident Or Cocky???

 

It is important that as believers, we exhibit our confidence before a lost and dying world, yet never with arrogance.  We can have absolute confidence in our Lord, yet we must be on guard against a cocky attitude of heart.

Being confident

of this very thing,

that he

which hath begun a good work

in you

will perform it

until the day of Jesus Christ:”     Philippians 1:6

You see, our confidence is in Jesus, our Lord and Savior, not in ourselves.  There is no place for arrogance, self-righteousness, or selfish pride!  The only thing that we have to be proud of is our LORD—oh how I cling to HIS cross and remember that HE has given me immeasurably more than I could ever earn or deserve. He “giveth more grace” for each day—it’s all about HIM not me—for “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us”!

For the grace of God

that bringeth salvation

hath appeared to all men,

12 Teaching us that,

denying ungodliness

and worldly lusts,

we should live soberly,

righteously,

and godly,

in this present world;

13 Looking for that blessed hope,

and the glorious appearing

of the great God and our Saviour

Jesus Christ;

14 Who gave himself for us,

that he might redeem us

from all iniquity,

and purify unto himself

a peculiar people,

 zealous of good works.

15 These things speak,

and exhort,

and rebuke

with all authority.

Let no man despise thee.

3:1 Put them in mind

to be subject to principalities and powers,

to obey magistrates,

to be ready to every good work,

2 To speak evil of no man,

to be no brawlers,

but gentle,

shewing all meekness

unto all men.

 3 For we ourselves also

were sometimes foolish,

disobedient,

deceived,

serving divers

lusts

and pleasures,

living in malice

and envy,

hateful,

and hating one another.

4 But after that the kindness

and love

of God our Saviour

toward man appeared,

5 Not by works of righteousness

which we have done,

but according to his mercy

he saved us,

by the washing of regeneration,

and renewing of the Holy Ghost;

6 Which he shed on us

abundantly

through Jesus Christ our Saviour;

7 That being justified by his grace,

we should be made heirs

according to the hope

of eternal life.”  Titus 2:11-3:7

Because God “so loved the world that HE gave”—we can have life, new life in Christ Jesus!  We must never forget that it is of God’s mercy that we are saved.  Even as Jeremiah wrote, after the fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonians, knowing his confidence was anchored in his God, not himself!  After all, it was God who had warned them for some 40 years to repent, with very little response to Jeremiah’s message!

This I recall to my mind,

therefore have I hope.

22 It is of the LORD’S mercies

that we are not consumed,

because his compassions fail not.

23 They are new every morning:

great is thy faithfulness.

24 The LORD is my portion, saith my soul;

therefore will I hope in him.

25 The LORD is good unto them

that wait for him,

to the soul that seeketh him.”    Lamentations 3:21-25

There was also a contemporary of Jeremiah’s latter years, who received a message from God for those who would respond—and that message is as true for us today as it was those thousands of years ago.  Have you responded to God’s call?  Have you humbled yourself before Him, and come to know God through His son Jesus?

And such as do wickedly against the covenant

shall he corrupt by flatteries:

but the people that do know their God

shall be strong,

and do exploits.”  Daniel 11:32

And they that be wise

shall shine as the brightness

of the firmament;

and they that turn many to righteousness

as the stars for ever and ever.”  Daniel 12:3

But how can we know God and turn others to righteousness?  There is only ‘One Way’, Jesus, and seeking Him through His Word and through prayer.  And when we draw near to God, and depend upon His grace and power, we can learn to recognize the opportunities that He gives us to share the gospel of the cross.  Even as He gave to Paul, who testified of his total reliance on Jesus blood, and the truth of the “crucified” and risen Lord Jesus!

And I, brethren,

when I came to you,

came not

with excellency of speech

or of wisdom,

declaring unto you the testimony

of God.

2 For I determined not to know any thing

among you,

save Jesus Christ,

and him crucified.

3 And I was with you

in weakness,

and in fear,

and in much trembling.

4 And my speech

and my preaching

was not with enticing words

of man’s wisdom,

but in demonstration

of the Spirit

and of power:

5 That your faith should not stand

in the wisdom of men,

but in the power of God.”    1 Corinthians 2:1-5

As John shared in his gospel account.

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.

14 And the Word was made flesh,

and dwelt among us,

(and we beheld his glory,

the glory as of the only begotten

of the Father,)

full of grace and truth.”   John 1:12-14

So, as we consider the choices that lay before us this week—may we approach them with humble confidence, yet with boldness as we speak the truth of the Gospel; not swelling with pride and arrogance, or lording it over those we encounter, as if we were better than they, but humbly sharing the truth of the cross.  May we join with Paul in recognizing our own sin and weakness, and follow the Lord  Jesus who calls us—to take up our cross (which means that we are to die to self and live to Him) as we follow Him; yet even that is done by God, His Holy Spirit whom He has given to dwell within every believer, and through His power—that it may of Christ alone.

I am crucified

with Christ:

nevertheless I live;

yet not I,

but Christ

liveth in me:

and the life which I now live

in the flesh

I live by the faith

of the Son of God,

who loved me,

and gave himself

for me.”  Galatians 2:20

Jesus summed it up in John 15.

Abide in me,

and I in you.

As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,

except it abide in the vine;

no more can ye,

except ye abide in me.

5 I am the vine,

ye are the branches:

He that abideth in me,

and I in him,

the same bringeth forth

much fruit:

for without me

ye can do nothing.”  John 15:4-5

So, remember that while “I can do all things through Christ”, it is only because “Christ liveth in me!  Confident in HIS love, grace and power—never being cocky in my own power!

Pride goeth before destruction,

and an haughty spirit

before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18

Humble yourselves

in the sight of the Lord,

and he shall lift you up.”  James 4:10

Praise Him today!

Great is the LORD,

and greatly to be praised;

and his greatness

is unsearchable.”  Psalm 145:3

Amen and Amen!