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Bible Ballistics: Vol. 15 No. 11    A Saddened Heart???

 

As I sit here thinking of the things that I have seen come and go, the things that I have loved and lost, the things that I have treasured seemingly vanishing before our eyes, there is a scripture that is often overlooked but it comes to my mind so often, and I believe we ought to consider it as we watch things change all around us.  What are we willing to hold on to and what are we willing to not only let go of but abandon with no regard!

Thou shalt not remove

thy neighbour’s landmark,

which they of old time

have set in thine inheritance,

which thou shalt inherit

in the land that the LORD thy God

giveth thee

to possess it.”   Deuteronomy 19:14

Many today are not only ‘removing’ the landmarks, they are denying that there ever were any landmarks.  Many are running to abandon the God of The Bible, and The Bible of God Almighty!  Isaiah said it better than I could:

Woe unto them

that call evil good,

and good evil;

that put darkness for light,

and light for darkness;

 that put bitter for sweet,

and sweet for bitter!

21 Woe unto them that are wise

in their own eyes,

and prudent

in their own sight!

22 Woe unto them

that are mighty to drink wine,

and men of strength

to mingle strong drink:

23 Which justify the wicked      

for reward,

and take away the righteousness

of the righteous from him!

24 Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble,

and the flame consumeth the chaff,

so their root shall be as rottenness,

and their blossom shall go up as dust:

because they have cast away

the law of the LORD of hosts,

and despised

the word of the Holy One of Israel.”  Isaiah 5:20-24

Just as timely, and so much like history, it is said “those who don’t learn from it are doomed to repeat it” (credited to George Santayana), it seems that our nation, as well as the world around us, are choosing to walk in our own way rather than God’s, and He will requite in HIS own time, yet we can gain a great deal of insight from HIS Word!

For our transgressions

are multiplied before thee,

and our sins

testify against us:

for our transgressions are with us;

and as for our iniquities,

we know them;

13 In transgressing

and lying against the LORD,

and departing away from our God,

speaking oppression

and revolt,

conceiving and uttering

from the heart

words of falsehood.

14 And judgment

is turned away backward,

and justice

standeth afar off:

for truth

is fallen in the street,

and equity

cannot enter.

15 Yea, truth faileth;

and he that departeth from evil

maketh himself a prey:

and the LORD saw it,

and it displeased him

that there was no judgment.”   Isaiah 59:12-15

We must choose what we are going to do with God, His Word and His Son, Jesus!  Even as Joshua called Israel to choose whom they would serve.

And I have given you a land

for which ye did not labour,

and cities

which ye built not,

and ye dwell in them;

of the vineyards and oliveyards

which ye planted not

do ye eat.

14 Now therefore fear the LORD,

 and serve him in sincerity and in truth:

and put away the gods

which your fathers served

on the other side of the flood,

and in Egypt;

and serve ye the LORD.

15 And if it seem evil

unto you

to serve the LORD,

choose you this day

whom ye will serve;

whether the gods

which your fathers served

that were on the other side of the flood,

or the gods of the Amorites,

in whose land ye dwell:

but as for me and my house,

we will serve the LORD.”   Joshua 24:13-15

Even as Joshua made his choice, he called those around him to make their choice—and we are faced with that same challenge today, yet it saddens my heart that we are becoming more and more averse to God’s call to holiness and more and more open to the lies of the enemy of our souls, and the world.  How about you?  Have you given up on God’s call?  Have you decided to just “go along, to get along”?  Or are you hearing and responding to God’s call?

Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind,

be sober,

and hope

to the end

for the grace that is to be brought

unto you

 at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

14 As obedient children,

not fashioning yourselves

according to the former lusts

in your ignorance:

15 But as he which hath called you is holy,

so be ye holy

in all manner of conversation;

16 Because it is written,

Be ye holy;

for I am holy.

17 And if ye call on the Father,

who without respect of persons

judgeth according to every man’s work,

pass the time of your sojourning here

in fear:

18 Forasmuch as ye know

that ye were not redeemed

with corruptible things,

 as silver and gold,

from your vain conversation

received by tradition

from your fathers;

19 But with the precious blood of Christ,

as of a lamb without blemish

and without spot:

20 Who verily was foreordained

before the foundation

of the world,

but was manifest

in these last times

for you,

21 Who by him

do believe in God,

that raised him up

from the dead,

and gave him glory;

that your faith and hope

might be in God.”   1 Peter 1:13-21

Where is your faith?  Is your faith in God, His Word and His Son?  Are you living a holy life, even as God called Israel to when He gave them the Law through Moses?

For I am the LORD your God:

ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves,

and ye shall be holy;

for I am holy:

neither shall ye defile yourselves …

…45 For I am the LORD

that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt,

to be your God:

ye shall therefore be holy,

for I am holy.” Leviticus 11:44-45

A simple consideration for us today, “What will you/I do with God’s call upon your/my life?”  Will we bear God’s burden for the lost and dying world around us, sharing Jesus at every opportunity; or will we disregard their plight and continue on with life “as usual”, living worldly lives of compromise,  rather than drawing near to our Lord, and fulfilling that for which He has saved and equipped us.  May we remember that when Jesus saves us out of darkness, and transforms us from being children of the devil, to being Sons and Daughters of God, we “are bought with a price”.

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 1:12-13

As Paul makes so clear, we can choose the “joy of The Lord” or the sadness of the world!

And you hath he quickened,

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 in sins,

hath quickened us together with Christ,

(by grace ye are saved;)

6 And hath raised us

 up together,

and made us sit

together in heavenly places

in Christ Jesus:

7 That in the ages to come

he might shew the exceeding riches

of his grace

in his kindness toward us

through Christ Jesus.

8 For by grace are ye saved

through faith;

and that not of yourselves:

it is the gift of God:

9 Not of works,

lest any man should boast.

10 For we are his workmanship,

created in Christ Jesus

 unto good works,

which God hath before ordained

that we should walk in them.”   Ephesians 2:1-10

When God births us into HIS kingdom, we can rejoice in HIM, HIS Word and HIS ways rather than settle for the darkness of the world—for we no longer belong to the works of the devil; and God has already ordained “good works” for us to produce!

Giving thanks unto the Father,

which hath made us meet to be partakers

of the inheritance

of the saints

in light:

13 Who hath delivered us

from the power of darkness,

and hath translated us

into the kingdom of his dear Son:    

14 In whom we have redemption

through his blood,

even the forgiveness of sins:”  Colossians 1:12-14

Paul also makes it clear that there is a distinction between the works of The Spirit and the works of the flesh/the devil.

This I say then,

Walk in the Spirit,

and ye shall not fulfil the lust

of the flesh.

17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit,

and the Spirit against the flesh:

and these are contrary

the one to the other:

so that ye cannot do the things

that ye would.

18 But if ye be led of the Spirit,

ye are not under the law.

19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these;

Adultery,

fornication,

uncleanness,

lasciviousness,

20 Idolatry,

witchcraft,

hatred,

variance,

emulations,

wrath,

strife,

seditions,

heresies,

21 Envyings,

murders,

drunkenness,

revellings,

and such like:

of the which I tell you before,

as I have also told you in time past,

that they which do such things

shall not inherit

the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is

love,

joy,

peace,

longsuffering,

gentleness,

goodness,

faith,

23 Meekness,

temperance:

against such there is no law.

24 And they that are Christ’s

have crucified the flesh

with the affections

and lusts.

25 If we live in the Spirit,

 let us also walk in the Spirit.”   Galatians 5:16-25

Where are you walking?  In the Spirit or the flesh? May God help us to “fix our eyes on Jesus” living ‘kingdom’ lives.  May our hearts be burdened that those around us will see Jesus in us—in all we do.

Whether therefore

ye eat,

or drink,

or whatsoever ye do,

do all to the glory of God.”   1 Corinthians 10:31

To whom God would make known

what is the riches

of the glory

of this mystery

among the Gentiles;

which is Christ in you,

the hope of glory:”   Colossians 1:27

But thanks be to God,

which giveth us the victory

through our Lord Jesus Christ.

58 Therefore, my beloved brethren,

be ye stedfast,

unmoveable,

always abounding

 in the work of the Lord,

forasmuch as ye know that your labour

is not in vain

in the Lord.”1 Corinthians 15:57-58

Amen!