Bible Ballistics: BBs #564 Sometimes You Need To Run???
Sometimes it is hard to see truth clearly. I’m saddened by the nature of our culture, but even more so by the willingness of many who claim the name of Jesus to compromise truth to get along, to be entertained, or to fit in. Truth is still truth, yet even sadder to me, is the fact that so few of God’s own know what His Word says, for it is our standard, our plumb-line, our only secure path for life. Yet there is something else that I want to address, and while you may think it’s about ‘racing’, it’s about living a godly, victorious life in light of our past, present and future.
“For the word of God is
and sharper than any twoedged sword,
piercing even to the dividing asunder
and of the joints
and is a discerner
of the thoughts
of the heart.
13 Neither is there any creature
that is not manifest
in his sight:
but all things
unto the eyes of him
with whom we have to do.
14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest,
that is passed into the heavens,
Jesus the Son of God,
let us hold fast our profession.
15 For we have not an high priest
which cannot be touched
with the feeling of our infirmities;
but was in all points tempted
like as we are,
yet without sin.
16 Let us therefore come boldly
unto the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy,
and find grace
in time of need.” Hebrews 4:12-16
While I love the first part of this passage, which declares the veracity and authority of God’s Word, I also find great wisdom, comfort and confidence in the last two verses—we have JESUS to run to! No matter the situations or circumstances of our lives, we can take it to Jesus; we can bring it “boldly unto the throne of grace”—not arrogantly but boldly– knowing that our God is faithful to hear, and provide HIS mercy and grace in our “time of need”! I don’t know about you, but I find myself in need of HIS presence, power and provision on a continual basis; and HE assures us of His willingness, faithfulness, and loving provision! Don’t waste it by running to places where you won’t find Him!
But there are times that we just need to run away from some things! That, my friends, is scriptural, and we ought to heed the warning that God has given us about harmful people, places, and things! Paul warned his young ‘son in the ministry’ of that very thing and told him what to do!
“Flee also youthful lusts:
but follow righteousness,
with them that call on the Lord
out of a pure heart.” 2 Timothy 2:22
Our flesh is always subject to lusts of the flesh, and young flesh particularly, partly because of inexperience, and partly because of the necessity to grow physically, mentally, morally and spiritually. Yet there are times that we simply need to RUN from things that want to destroy us—whether they be substances, people or activities. Even we older people get caught up in “youthful” lusts because of the the world we live in. But we must all camp out on God’s Word and remember that every choice has a consequence; and while I am free to choose my actions, I am not free to choose or set the consequences that come.
“Be not deceived;
God is not mocked:
for whatsoever a man soweth,
that shall he also reap.
8 For he that soweth to his flesh
shall of the flesh reap corruption;
but he that soweth to the Spirit
shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” Galatians 6:7-8 (be sure and read verse 9 too)
One of the most profound examples is Joseph, a fine godly young man who throughout his years of trial, held fast to The God he loved and served. But he ‘ran’ when temptation came his way.
“And it came to pass about this time,
that Joseph went into the house
to do his business;
and there was none of the men of the house
12 And she caught him by his garment,
saying, Lie with me:
and he left his garment in her hand,
and got him out.” Genesis 39:11-12
Joseph ran from the seduction of his master’s wife, and while he still wound up being falsely accused, he did the right thing and ran/fled from the temptation. Now I am not supporting the abundance of advice on social media about ‘cutting people out of your life because they are toxic’, I am saying that we need to learn to recognize temptation to sin, and to run from it. God has called us to be salt and light in a world of corruption, sin and darkness; but He has never called us to participate in their actions to win them! We are called to be (not just act) holy, and that only comes from the inside, from God, as we yield to the leadership of The Holy Spirit whom God has given to believers!
“Prove all things;
hold fast that which is good.
22 Abstain from all appearance of evil.
23 And the very God of peace
sanctify you wholly;
and I pray God
your whole spirit
be preserved blameless
unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
24 Faithful is he that calleth you,
who also will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:21-24
How often have we found ourselves caught up in the throes of sin because we didn’t recognize it as sin—all the while God’s voice of warning was sounding off alarms that we ignored. God is working to sanctify our whole being that His children may be “conformed to the image of His Son”! (See Romans 8:28-29)
“There is a way that seemeth right unto a man,
but the end thereof
are the ways of death.” Proverbs 16:25
And I can’t close without a word of encouragement and warning, that we may be prepared for the days in which we live—we must learn to measure everything in our lives by The Word of God. The world paints a most appealing picture, but they aren’t always true pictures. Satan is the “father of lies” and he is good at his work! Don’t’ “be deceived” by the lure of sin—and it does have a lure; and we must know truth so that we can stand fast “in the evil day”! Let me simply say, there are places I don’t go because I don’t believe they are places that a child of God ought to be; there are words I don’t use because God has called us to “be holy” and not have “corrupt communication” come out of our mouth; there are relationships that I avoid (not to be mean, rude or act with disregard) because of the danger of temptation that they cause to my mind, heart and/or my soul (and while they may mean no harm to me, the fact is, they cause my heart and mind to go places it doesn’t need to go)! While it isn’t always easy, and it surely isn’t always understood by others, I must follow my Lord, and draw near to Him regardless of what the world around me may think. As things continue to spiral out of control in our world, we must choose to “be separate” to whatever degree God leads us (and that may not look the same in all particulars of my life and yours!). Who are you allowing to influence your life? Is it for the godly way, or the world’s way? Only you can answer that question. But remember, there is a test—an accounting—coming!
“But those things which proceed out of the mouth
come forth from the heart;
and they defile the man.” Matthew 15:18
“Wherefore come out from among them,
and be ye separate, saith the Lord,
and touch not the unclean thing;
and I will receive you,” 2 Corinthians 6:17
“And I heard another voice from heaven, saying,
Come out of her, my people,
that ye be not partakers of her sins,
and that ye receive not of her plagues.” Revelation 18:4