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Sin and Consequences

Recently, an article was published on this website entitled The Danger of Sin.
The article focused on sin mainly on a national, country level. This article focuses on sin and consequences on a more personal level.

That piece explains in detail what sin is, which is basically a transgression against God’s Law. Does God forgive us of our transgressions? Yes, He does. But is that the end of the story? Do we live happily ever after? Not necessarily.

The Consequences of Sin

It is crucial for us to realize that even though God forgives us of our sins, there may still be consequences as a result.

These consequences are the manifestation of one of God’s universal laws found in Scripture.

Gal 6:7

7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

We reap what we sow—even after forgiveness.

There is no more explicit example of this in the Scriptures than the account with King David and Bathsheba. This is a well-known Biblical account, but we will take a look for those who are unfamiliar.

The first king of Israel, Saul, was disobedient, and God removed him as king. Samuel the prophet announced this to Saul, 1 Sam 13:13-14

13 And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the Lord have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever.

14 But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.

The man after God’s own heart was David. Therefore, David was highly Sin and Consequences - David, a man after God's own heartfavored by God.

However, along the way, David engaged in some unfavored behavior. 2 Sam 11:2-6

2 One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, (3) and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, “Isn’t this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?” (4) Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. (She had purified herself from her uncleanness.) Then she went back home. (5) The woman conceived and sent word to David, saying, “I am pregnant.” NIV

So David committed the sin of adultery, and Bathsheba conceived. However, that isn’t the end of the story.

2 Sam 11:6-14

6 So David sent this word to Joab: “Send me Uriah the Hittite.” And Joab Sin and Consequences - David and Bathshebiasent him to David. 7 When Uriah came to him, David asked him how Joab was, how the soldiers were and how the war was going. 8 Then David said to Uriah, “Go down to your house and wash your feet.” So Uriah left the palace, and a gift from the king was sent after him. 9 But Uriah slept at the entrance to the palace with all his master’s servants and did not go down to his house.

David sent for Uriah, Bathsheba’s husband, to come home so that he would sleep with his wife so that he would think the child was his. However, he did not go home.

10 When David was told, “Uriah did not go home,” he asked him, “Haven’t you just come from a distance? Why didn’t you go home?”

11 Uriah said to David, “The ark and Israel and Judah are staying in tents, and my master Joab and my lord’s men are camped in the open fields. How could I go to my house to eat and drink and lie with my wife? As surely as you live, I will not do such a thing!”

Uriah was an honorable man with a conscience and would not enjoy the comforts of home while his fellow soldiers were out fighting in the fields.

12 Then David said to him, “Stay here one more day, and tomorrow I will send you back.” So Uriah remained in Jerusalem that day and the next. 13 At David’s invitation, he ate and drank with him, and David made him drunk. But in the evening Uriah went out to sleep on his mat among his master’s servants; he did not go home. NIV

David made one last futile attempt for Uriah to go home, even making him drunk. However, again, he did not go home. So what would David do now?

2 Sam 11:14-27

14 In the morning David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it with Uriah. 15 In it he wrote, “Put Uriah in the front line where the fighting is fiercest. Then withdraw from him so he will be struck down and die.”

16 So while Joab had the city under siege, he put Uriah at a place where he knew the strongest defenders were. 17 When the men of the city came out and fought against Joab, some of the men in David’s army fell; moreover, Uriah the Hittite died.

Unwittingly, Uriah delivered the letter containing his death sentence to Joab, and he was killed for being a loyal, conscientious soldier. David had now committed murder and had blood on his hands

18 Joab sent David a full account of the battle. 19 He instructed the messenger: “When you have finished giving the king this account of the battle, 20 the king’s anger may flare up, and he may ask you, ‘Why did you get so close to the city to fight? Didn’t you know they would shoot arrows from the wall? 21 Who killed Abimelech son of Jerub-Besheth? Didn’t a woman throw an upper millstone on him from the wall, so that he died in Thebez? Why did you get so close to the wall?’ If he asks you this, then say to him, ‘Also, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.'”

David’s objective was complete; Uriah was dead.

22 The messenger set out, and when he arrived, he told David everything Joab had sent him to say. 23 The messenger said to David, “The men overpowered us and came out against us in the open, but we drove them back to the entrance to the city gate. 24 Then the archers shot arrows at your servants from the wall, and some of the king’s men died. Moreover, your servant Uriah the Hittite is dead.”

David should have been devastated to have lost such a devoted man of valor. But…

25 David told the messenger, “Say this to Joab: ‘Don’t let this upset you; the sword devours one as well as another. Press the attack against the city and destroy it.’ Say this to encourage Joab.”

There was no remorse whatsoever. So just carry on—business as usual.

26 When Uriah’s wife heard that her husband was dead, she mourned for him. 27 After the time of mourning was over, David had her brought to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son. But the thing David had done displeased the Lord.  NIV

Everything was done properly. Bathsheba mourned her husband for the proper amount of time, David did the right thing and married her, and he had a SON, how great. However, God was displeased. Let’s see what happens next.

2 Sam 12:1-6

The Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to him, he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. 2 The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, 3 but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.

4 “Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”

5 David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this deserves to die! 6 He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.” NIV

David did not realize that Nathan the prophet was portraying him, and his reaction confirmed his guilt and fate. Now what?

2 Sam 12:7-12

7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man! This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8 I gave your master’s house to you, and your master’s wives into your arms. I gave you the house of Israel and Judah.

Sin and Consequences - David & Nathan
The Lord rebuked David through the prophet Nathan.

And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. 9 Why did you despise the word of the Lord by doing what is evil in his eyes? You struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. You killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. 10 Now, therefore, the sword will never depart from your house, because you despised me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your own.’

11 “This is what the Lord says: ‘Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity upon you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight. 12 You did it in secret, but I will do this thing in broad daylight before all Israel.'” NIV

God’s judgment against David was harsh. However, take a look at what follows.

Verse 13, Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.“NIV

After Nathan had snatched the cover off his sins, David confessed his sin. It is during this time that David wrote Psalm 51.

What’s next?

Nathan replied, “The Lord has taken away your sin. You are not going to die.

Nathan confirmed to David that the Lord had taken away his sin—he was forgiven, and his life was spared. So all is clear, right? Not exactly.

14 But because by doing this you have made the enemies of the Lord show utter contempt, the son born to you will die.” NIV

David’s sin dishonored God greatly. If he had not punished David, it could have made God look as though He approves evil. This sin of David’s would cause people to dishonor God. Punishment also discourages others from committing the same sin. The child did die (vs. 18).

Sin and Consequences - David's son dies
David and Bathsheba’s son dies

However, that was only the beginning. The prophecy in these verses came true. For the reason that David murdered Uriah and stole his wife,

(1) murder became a perpetual threat in his family (chap.13:26-30; 18:14,15; 1 Kings 2:23-25);

(2) his household revolted against him (15:13);

(3) his wives were given to another(his son) in public view (16:20-23).

Was it worth it? Probably if David had known the painful consequences of his sin, he might not have pursued the pleasures of the moment. This chastisement followed David for the rest of his life. You can read the details in the captioned Scriptures in parenthesis.

The Takeaway and Life Application

Repentance and forgiveness do not eliminate consequences. No one repented stronger than David did, yet he was severely punished for his sins.

Most individuals feel that when they repent and are forgiven of their transgression, that is the end of the story, and no more punishment should occur. However, as we see in this account in the Scriptures, that is not always the case.

We must heed the Scriptures. 1 Cor. 10:11-13

11 These things happened to them as examples for us. They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age.

God bestowed the Scriptures upon us to show us examples to warn us of the

The Holy Bible
The Inspired Word of God

consequences.

12 If you think you are standing strong, be careful not to fall.

David: loved and anointed by God as King of Israel, a man “after God’s own heart” crumbled under temptation. The lesson: no one is immune to temptation so, we must never think that we are standing too strong to fall.

13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. NLT

Temptation has been around from the beginning. No temptation we face today is unique.

David was given “a way out.” He was told that Bathsheba was Uriah’s wife, but he did not take heed.

Yes, God forgives our transgressions. But we must remember that there may be a severe consequence that cannot be reversed.

We will reap what we sow, and sometimes more than we sow.

Amen.

You are welcome to leave any comments, questions, or concerns below.

Blessings!

 

 

 

When Did God Change?

The moral fiber of the US and the world has changed and is continuing to change. However, these changes are occurring in spite of what God and His word are saying. Perhaps something is missing or overlooked, so the question becomes, when did God change?

The Changes

The postmodern movement ushered in a climate of subjectivity. This movement has led to a move away from objectivity with standard fixed rules and traditions. Instead, everything now passes through the lens of subjectivity, how an individual feels about what is right or wrong.

So, let’s look at some of these changes.

Truth – What is truth? Truth is the core of real things, events, and facts: it is a state of reality. Therefore, the truth cannot be legitimately shaken or disproven.

Truth is an element of God’s being. When He presented Himself to Moses on the mountain, He proclaimed His attributes. In Ex 34:5-6:

5 And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord.

6 And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,

Everything that proceeds out of the mouth of God is truth.

Truth is freedom. Jesus said in John 8:31-32, …”If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

Truth is freedom from sin in this context, but the truth is also freedom from ignorance. If you know the truth about something, you are no longer ignorant of it. Therefore, to state that the truth is freedom means that when you tell the truth, that is the end of the story. However, when we lie, it leads to other lies to cover up the previous lie, and that is simply bondage!

However, presently, truth is becoming what an individual feels is the truth. Even when the truth is in their face, they deny it and put their own reality in place of it. This denial of the truth has even reached the upper levels of government.

But, what does God and His Word say? Col 3:9-10When did God Change? Do not LieD

9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices NIV

Ephesians 4:25
25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.

God’s Word says that we are to speak the truth; every
man with his neighbor.”
This means that everybody is to speak the truth; this will lead to living the truth.

Lev 19:11

11 “Do not steal. “‘ Do not lie. “Do not deceive one another. NIV

Can it be any clearer? 

Abortion – Abortion, the termination of human life, is legal in the US. The advocates for this act claim that it is a women’s constitutional right to chose to terminate life. This act is the law of the land. Statistics
indicate that from 2005 to 2018, 10,121,000 legal abortions were carried out in the US.

Now let that sink in; over 10 million human lives were destroyed. For what reason? This number doesn’t represent some financial statistic, but lives that never had a chance to live and society say it’s okay.

But what does God and His Word say? Lev 18:21:When did Gid Change - Abortion

21 Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Molech, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the Lord. NIV

God explicitly forbade the sacrificing of children. God wanted His chosen people, the Israelites, to be sanctified from the idolatrous nations who sacrificed children to the false god Molech. Leviticus contained the law for God’s people to live a holy life unto Him and still applies today.

Deut 18:10:

10 Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire… NIV

The book of Deuteronomy is a repeat of the law, and once again, the offering of children is forbidden.

Now we may not be literally throwing children in the fire today to Molech. However, we sacrifice them by terminating their lives for self convenience of one form or another. Because it isn’t convenient for us, we sacrifice the life and end it. This act is against the will of God, and it is idolatry. Whenever we choose to act against the will of God, it is idolatry.

Homosexuality – Homosexuality is widely accepted today in the US and the world. According to a survey
performed by UCLA’s Williams Institute, there are 10,338,000 homosexuals (LGBT) in the United States. But, what does God and His Word say? Lev 18:22

22 Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable. NIVWhen did God Change - Homosexuality

Lev 20:13

13 If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. NIV

Again, these Scriptures are from the Levitical law and forbid the detestable acts of the idolatrous nations.  However, the New Testament Scriptures address homosexuality also. 1 Cor. 6:9-11

9 Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders (10) nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. NIV

Homosexuals are included with those who will not inherit heaven.

Same Sex marriage – This is the law of the land in the US and a few other countries. According to a 2019 population survey, there are 543,000 same-sex married couple households, and 469,000 households with same-sex unmarried partners living together in the US.

Question:
If God forbids homosexuality, how can there be validity in homosexual marriage? However, let’s look at what God and His Word say about it. Gen 2:22-24

22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’for she was taken out of man.”

24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. NIV

Notice that God created man and woman, and they are to be united as one flesh. This design is the order of God’s holy and divine creation; this is the created order of life. There is nothing in Scripture that sanctions same sex marriage.

When did God Change - Same-sex Marriage
God says: Marriage is between a man and a woman

To God, Marriage is between a man and a woman.

When did God Change - Same Sex Marriage
Transgender is not the will of God

Transgenderism – Some individuals are not satisfied with their physical sex at birth but prefer the opposite sex (a man desiring to be a woman and vice-versa). This attitude includes adopting the behaviors and the appearance of the opposite sex. The modern and inclusive philosophy of some societies has embraced this attitude. So, what does God and His Word say about it? Deut 22:5:

5 A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this. NIV

Again, God created man and woman, and this is the order of God’s holy and divine creation; this is the created order of life. Therefore, the individuality between males and females is to be upheld. We must understand that there is a clear, distinctive difference between a man and a woman, and this clear, distinct difference is to be respected, maintained, and honored.

In this Scripture, God demanded that the created order of life was not to be violated. Wearing the clothes and adopting the behavior of the opposite sex is unnatural. In God’s eyes, it is abnormal, repulsive, distasteful behavior. However, even more severe, the Scripture indicates that transvestism is an abomination to God. God detests it. The idea conveyed is that the judgment of God will fall upon the person who seeks fleshly pleasure through transvestism.

Transvestism often directs to homosexuality; furthermore, this deviant behavior is often associated with homosexuality. The law of God was and is clear: the order of God’s holy creation that of male and female is not to be dishonored nor camouflaged. Females at birth are to be women, and males at birth are to be men. The distinction is to be protected, respected, and honored.

These are just a few of the areas societies, particularly in the US, have changed. Again, the idea is to be more modern and inclusive.

But, when did God change? Is He more inclusive? If so, how much?

The Unchangeable GodWhen Did God Change - The Unchangable God

So how much has God changed? Let’s look at what His Word says in Mal 3:6-7

6 I the Lord do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 7 Ever since the time of your forefathers you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty. NIV

In this Scripture, we have the Lord’s call to His people to repent in view of His return through the prophet Malachi. He states that they were not destroyed because of the promise He made to Jacob, their forefather. He made a promise, and because He doesn’t change, His promises are sure. This promise is the only reason they had not been judged and completely cut off from the Lord. Though they had sinned and violated every term of God’s covenant, He would not change. He would uphold His covenant and abide by it.

However, they had fallen far from God because they had not kept His decrees and had fallen out of His favor. Therefore, he admonished them to return to Him, and He would return to them.

In other words, no matter how much they changed away from His Word (decrees), He was not changing. So, therefore, they would have to return to His will to receive His favor and so must we. God has not and will not change. He is the unchangeable God. There is no need for God to change, He’s perfect!

He goes on in chapter 4. Mal 4:1-2, 4

Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the Lord Almighty. “Not a root or a branch will be left to them. 2 But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. 4 Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel. NIV

The day the Lord is referencing here is the day of His return. All of the arrogant and evildoers will be destroyed. However, the ones who obey the laws and statutes of Moses and revere God will be saved.

The Takeaway and Life Application

It has been said, “The Bible is old-fashioned and has fallen away from the times.”
However, the Bible hasn’t fallen away from the times; the times have fallen away from the Bible.

Indeed society has changed and is still evolving. But, unfortunately, it is changing and evolving away from God. However, no matter how much society changes, no matter what man’s law says, no matter how far we evolve from God’s Word, God will not change. Therefore, those who continue down this path will reap what happens on the day of the Lord.

Christ united all, both Jews and Gentiles, as God’s people (Gal. 3:28). Therefore, just as the Israelites need to return to God in verses 6 and 7, so must all of us.

We must remember the Scripture in 2 Chron. 7:14

 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

It behooves us to have reverence for the unchanging God and His Word.

Zeph. 2:3: “Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, you who do what he commands. Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the Lord’s anger.” NIV

Amen

Questions, comments, and concerns are welcomed below. You will receive a response.

 

 

 

The 3rd Commandment

The Ten Commandments are the base commands of God’s moral Law. These commandments were handed down to the Israelites as a guide on how to live righteously as God’s chosen people. However, as Moses descended from the mountain with the stone tablets containing the laws, the Israelites had already broken the first two commandments. Fortunately, Moses got to the bottom before they broke the 3rd commandment. However, as time went on, Israel broke all of God’s commandments. Is it any different today?

What is the 3rd Commandment?

The third commandment is found in Ex. 20:7, which reads:

Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

What does it mean to take the Lord’s name in vain?

The NIV translation reads, “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God….” The Hebrew word translated as vain is “shav,” which means pointlessly, using figuratively or foolishly, deceitfully, and flippantly. It means using God’s name in a thoughtless and insincere way. This third Commandment is a commandment that is universally disregarded by humanity.
In earlier times, the most common practice was to use God’s name in profanity slang, such as “it just a god**** shame.” In fact, in one church bulletin addressing this profane vernacular, it read, God’s last name is not damn.”

But you don’t’ hear much of that these days. We have progressed—or have we? These days we have more insidious ways of using the Lord’s name in vain. For starters, we say, “oh my God!”

So, is it wrong to call on God’s name? After all the Scriptures read in Acts 2:21, “And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” In addition, in Ps. 50:15, God is quoted as saying, “And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.” As well as Ps 91:15, “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.”
Lastly, Jer. 29:12, “Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.”

It is apparent that the Lord wants His people to call upon Him. The problem is when we call on His name not to be saved or in a day of trouble, but merely as a figure of speech.

If a dollar was donated every time, someone used the expression “oh my God,” there would be a lot fewer homeless people on the streets. It is incredible how far we have departed from the Commandments of God.

Anytime someone is excited, shocked, surprised, dismayed, or even angered about something, the first thing out of the mouth is, “oh my God!” Even more incredible is professing Christians are engaging this very practice.

In our tech-savvy world, we have gone generic with OMG. In the realm of text and instant messaging, social media, etc., it has become a prevalent The Third Commandment - OMGmeans for expressing surprise or astonishment. OMG can represent several things such as oh my God, oh my goodness, or oh my gosh.

This acronym is used in all sorts of secular venues: from Pop music to dolls. For example, a hit song is actually entitled, “Oh my God” which we danced to ignorantly!

The conventional wisdom says regarding OMG, it is not using the Lord’s name in vain because you’re not saying on my God. However, oh my God, is where it is derived. Even though it is watered down, it is not far enough away from God’s Commandment: “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God…” NIV There are no exceptions. Therefore, it is merely a weak excuse to have our way and another manifestation of a rebellious and narcissistic-selfish society.

In the post-modern society we live in today, everything is subjective: even using the Lord’s name in vain. If an individual feels that it is ok, so be it. And yet we ask, what is happening to America?

When we speak God’s name, it is at all times to be in a respectful and reverent way. God’s name is in no way to be used in any irreverent way whatsoever.

Below are all the little sayings that use God’s name in an irreverent or careless way that are wrong:

⇒ God Almighty

⇒ Sweet Jesus

⇒ Lord have mercy

⇒ Oh God

⇒ The man upstairs

⇒ Somebody up
there

⇒ God damn

⇒ God or Jesus Christ or Christ (by themselves, when spoken carelessly)

Why must we play with the name of God? Aren’t there enough words in the dictionary to express our excitement, dismay, or anger?

How we use God’s name and treat God’s name is of crucial concern to Him. He is the great Creator, the Sovereign LORD and Majesty, the Supreme Ruler and Judge of the universe. Therefore, His name must always be honored, praised, and worshipped. Because of His person and who He is, God demands and insists that we never, not ever, misuse His name.

Therefore:

  • we must never curse nor abuse His name.
  • We must never use His name in a frivolous or insincere way.
  • We must never take the name of the LORD God in vain.

This commandment is directed to every human being upon the earth. There is no room for subjectivity.

No individual of any age group or time of history, as long as God lives, as

The Third Commandment
                                   DON’T NEGLECT IT!

long as God exists, from eternity past to eternity future, is to misuse or take God’s name in vain. This is what God demands; one of the ways we are to connect to God is by reverencing His Name. This commandment will be in force as long as we live and as long as God exists—forever.

This commandment has an even broader spectrum. There are other ways an individual can misuse God’s name or take God’s name in vain. This commandment forbids profanity.

Profanity is the cursing, abusive, bitter, profane use of God’s name or any of God’s design. By design is meant everything within the universe. Therefore, taking God’s name in vain, misusing God’s name involves all uses of vulgarity and profanity: foul, distasteful slang words, and even words such as damn, hell, darn, and other such negative terms.

What do these kinds of words have to do with misusing God’s name? To put it simply, when we use profanity, we are profaning and cursing a part of creation. No individual has the right to profane and curse or condemn anything in God’s creation. We must never forget this one fact: The earth is the Lord’s, and He alone is the great Creator and Sustainer of everything within the universe. Therefore, to profane or curse anything in creation is to take God’s name in vain. It is destructive, totally senseless, and worthless.

Scripture, God’s Word, further confirms the distastefulness of profanity.  Col 3:6-9

6 Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7 You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8 But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and
filthy language
from your lips.
NIV

In this passage, Paul was reminding the Colossian Christians that they The Third Commandmentshould no longer engage in the things they practiced before becoming Christians, including “filthy language.”

Eph 4:29

29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.

Here again, Paul is addressing Christian Behavior. This time it is to the Christians in Ephesus. God’s people are not to use “foul or abusive language.”

What are the Consequences?

The Third Commandment
                                                              The Consequence is judgment!

The Commandment ends with, “…for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.”

It is pretty clear that judgment is the consequence. Judgment is the result of profanity. Yet, in our society, people excuse profanity as being therapeutic for agitated and angered spirits. However, that is a deception from the enemy. That perverted thinking will not hold up in court with God. On the contrary, it will only make the judgment for profanity more severe.

Profanity is like a storm, a terrible, terrifying disturbance that is devastating and completely senseless and worthless. Profanity is a pervasive sin that is blanketing our nation and the world today. Profanity is swiftly becoming so acceptable that it is a part of everyday conversation. The horrendous spiritual peril of profanity has been forgotten. The danger is tragically ignored and even denied. Even so, it is a definite threat: profanity is a creeping paralysis:

  •  that devastates the foundation of respect between individuals, especially between the citizens of a diverse society and nation.
  •  that wipes out the moral strength and esteem of individuals for one another and their nation.
  •  that corrupts the language of a nation and people
  •  that annihilates the ability of citizens to continue to grow, build, advance, enhance, enlarge, and increase the quality of their lives, society, and nation.

Profanity will destroy a nation by corrupting the language and respect of people for one another. Over time, profanity will attack and destroy everything held dear by society.

The bottom line is this: we must not use vulgarity, must not misuse God’s name for a terrifying reason: because the LORD holds us accountable if we misuse His name. The word “guiltless”
(waqah) denotes that God will not deem us clear or free from blame. He will not consider us clean or pure, innocent or “guiltless.” God will not acquit us or not let us go unpunished.

Here is why: Psalm 139:20

20 For they speak against thee wickedly, and thine enemies take thy name in vain.

Note what the Scripture says: the person who curses and misuses God’s name stands as an enemy of God. A man may curse God or swear untruthfully to his wife or neighbor or even a jury, and he may not be corrected or punished. However, God will know that the man cursed His name or lied, and Scripture is clear: God will rebuke him. God will punish the individual who insulted His great and glorious name.

It is interesting how both Christian and non-Christian individuals focus on a few commandments and disregard others. Such as, thou shalt not: lie, steal, commit adultery, and bear false witness. It is good to obey those. However, it is crucial to fully understand that all of God’s Commandments are to be obeyed. Not obeying just one commandment makes an individual a total lawbreaker. Scripture says in James 2:10-11, “ For the person who keeps all of the laws except one is as guilty as a person who has broken all of God’s laws. 11 For the same God who said, “You must not commit adultery,” also said, “You must not murder.” So if you murder someone but do not commit adultery, you have still broken the law.” NLT

There are no shortcuts to obeying God. Therefore, we must obey the commandment of controlling our speech and not use God’s name in vain. This includes His Son, Jesus, whose name is just as great. Scripture says in Phil 2:9-12:

9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:

10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

By honoring and glorifying the Son, we honor and glorify the Father. Therefore, it behooves us to control our speech along with the other areas of our lives.

Amen

All questions, comments, and concerns may be left below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

 

 

 

The Unpardonable Sin Explained

One of the things God is most noted for is His forgiveness of sins. God forgives unconditionally. The Scriptures tell us in Ps 86:5, “For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.” He sent His son to earth to provide a way for us to seek Him through repentance of our sins and ask for forgiveness. But did you know that there is a sin that He will not forgive? There is a sin that is unpardonable, and in this article, we have the unpardonable sin explained.

What is Sin?

Sin is the result of disobedience. More specifically, it is disobedience to God’s law. The Scriptures tells us in 1 John 3:4, Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. Therefore, it is a deliberate breach of the law. It is insurrection against God’s law, which is the standard of righteousness.

Sin comprises the denial of the living God from whom we as human beings draw our lives and existence (Acts 17:28); the outcome of this rebellion is death and the torment of hell. Death is the definitive penalty imposed by God for sin. The Bible states in Rom 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death…

In contrast to this dark condition of sin and its reality, the gospel arrives as the good news of the liberation that God has made available through His Son. Jesus bears the penalty of sin in place of His people (Mark 10:45). He additionally redeems us, liberates us from lawlessness, and enables us to desire to do good works in service to God and others (Titus 2:14).

How are we Redeemed

So how are we redeemed? The Scripture tells us in Eph. 1:5-7:

5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will (6) to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace NIV

Through repentance of our sins and accepting Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we have redemption through His blood. When this occurs, we receive the Holy Spirit, which enables us to walk in the righteousness of God. Acts 2:38 reads,Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” NIV

There is no greater gift, for we are powerless against the enemy that leads us into sin without the Holy Spirit.

What is the Unpardonable Sin?

So, with such great gifts from God as forgiveness and redemption of sin as the above Scriptures verify, what’s the deal? There is no mention of a sin that is not forgivable. Therefore, is there a sin that is unpardonable? To explain the unpardonable sin, let’s start with Matt 12:32

Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come. NIV

This Scripture contains Jesus’ response to the Pharisees denying that His power was from God. Instead, in the previous verses, they claimed that His power was from Satan.

These words appear to mean that by speaking against Jesus, the Pharisees might be forgiven because the insult may have been based on ignorance of who he was. After all, at that time, even Jesus’ disciples did not completely understand who he was. However, speaking against the Holy Spirit, to deny the power behind Jesus’ ministry — was unforgivable. (Some translations use the word “blasphemy,”
meaning extreme slander and lack of reverence.) The rejection of a messenger, even Christ Himself, can be forgiven, but not the rejection of God Himself through the Holy Spirit. The mighty works done by Jesus through the Spirit were unmistakable announcements that the kingdom had arrived. Those who had the nerve to attribute these works to Satan were not ignorant; alternately, they had made up their minds not to believe. Jesus said that those who vilify the Holy Spirit would not be forgiven, not because their sin is worse than any other, but because they will never ask for forgiveness.

Forgiveness is not automatic; we have to request it. In the same way, we have to grant it to others whether it is requested of us or not.

Let’s look at another passage: Heb 6:4-6

4 It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, (5) who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, The Unpardonable Sin Explained(6) if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace. NIV

This passage involves individuals who have turned from belief to unbelief.

It is not possible for individuals who have professed Christianity and have experienced all of the beautiful elements described in this passage and then have turned away from Christ to turn around and repent again. It is not impossible because these individuals show scorn for Christ through their intentional actions. It would be like personally crucifying Christ again. By departing from the faith, these individuals agree that the crucifixion was correct in that Christ was an imposter and needed to be killed.

Such treatment of Christ actually shames Him, as the Scripture reads, “Public disgrace.”
Instead of exalting and honoring Christ, it makes Him a very evil person, thus shaming Him greatly.

This passage refers to folks who walk with Christ for a while, then deliberately turn around, and walk in the other direction, rejecting Christ. Heb 10:26 says, “For if we willfully persist in sin after having received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins” (NRSV). The Unpardonable Sin ExplainedChrist cannot and will not be crucified again. Separately from His cross, there is no other achievable way of salvation. Once an individual turns from believing in Christ to not believing, that individual is lost. It is like the land of no return.

Whoever rejects the prompting of the Holy Spirit removes themselves from the only force that can lead anyone to repentance and restoration with God. Those who have witnessed the light yet prefer the darkness are blaspheming the Holy Spirit. This sin cannot be forgiven as the Scripture reads, “in this age or in the age to come”
because its consequences are eternal.

These individuals can never be restored because they will not desire to be. They have chosen instead to harden their hearts against Christ. It is not that God cannot forgive them; rather, they cannot be forgiven because they will not repent of their sins.

Scripture says in Prov. 29:1

He who is often rebuked, and hardens his neck, Will suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy. NKJV

Those who continue in sin despite the warning of the Holy Spirit shall be destroyed.

God has a threshold that takes an individual beyond the possibilities of redemption, and to exceed this point will require that one pay an eternal cost. If one exceeds the point of redemption, then one can expect to pay an everlasting price.

1 John 5:16-17

16 If anyone sees his brother sinning a sin which does not lead to death, he will ask, and He will give him life for those who commit sin not leading to The Unnpardonable Sin Explaineddeath. There is sin leading to death. I do not say that he should pray about that. 17 All unrighteousness is sin, and there is sin not leading to death. NKJV

There is a sin that does not result in eternal death, and there is a sin that results in the eternal death. For the sin that leads to eternal death, there is no forgiveness neither in this life or the life that is to come.” The sin unto death is a sin whose end result is blasphemy. The Scripture says, “I do not say that he should pray about that.” In other words, this sin is unpardonable, so don’t even bother praying about it.

This sin is apostasy — which is when an individual has rejected Christ and turned away from the faith despite the Holy Spirit. John was writing to Christians and expressing his concern for the infiltration of false teachers, leading them astray—away from Christ. His warning to them was that their sin of apostasy would lead to unbelief and their spiritual ruin.

The sin that leads to death isn’t any one particular sin but continuous unbelief and rebellion. These attitudes can be so strong that the victim will likely be unrepentant and unpardonable.

Life Application

Any denial of the Holy Spirit’s prompting to accept Christ or to continue in Christ is unbelief and is an unforgivable sin. These sins lead to spiritual death because, without Christ, there is no avenue for forgiveness. Any individual that dies in this state is simply a lost soul.

The Scripture warns us in 1 Thess. 5:19. “Quench not the Spirit.” To quench is to put out or put away.

If the Spirit repeatedly prompts us to give up sin, yet we continue to refuse, the Spirit will leave and never ask again. At that moment, an individual becomes unpardonable. We cannot be pardoned unless we repent, and we cannot repent without the impression of the Holy Spirit.

Going back to the original text, verse 31, “all manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men:” The Scripture clarifies that all manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven. Therefore, if all manner of sin and blasphemy will be forgiven, that means that there is no single sin that is not forgivable if confession and repentance take place. Against this background, since no single sin is unpardonable, it means that it is not the sin that is unpardonable. However, the individual becomes unpardonable because the Spirit has been quenched, leading to unbelief. As the Scripture reads but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” NIV

Once the Spirit has left, there is no impression on the heart to repent. Therefore, it is not the sin that is not pardoned, but the holding on to the sin leads to the point of no return, the point where God cannot pardon. Persistent procrastination often provokes the punishment of God.

Any sin can lead us to the point of no return. The one sin that we hold onto can lead us to the point of no return—unbelief. This is the danger we all face.

The sin that is “not leading to death” is a sin committed out of ignorance or error instead of unbelief. These sins can be confessed, and repentance can occur (1 John 1:9, Prov. 28:13). For more on repentance, see the article, Repentance and Sin,
on this website.

So we must examine ourselves and ask what sin are we holding onto that we refuse to give up despite the Holy Spirit’s conviction?

The Bottom Line

Bottom line—the unpardonable sin in a nutshell is—unbelief. The only sin that God is not able to forgive is the refusal to accept forgiveness.

Eph 6:12 reads, For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and All Abut Spiritual Warfareagainst the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. NIV

Christians are in a war against the evil forces of this world known as spiritual warfare, and the Holy Spirit must empower us to fight successfully. This is a danger all Christians face and we need the Holy Spirit.

We are further warned in 1 Peter 5:8-9

8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (9) Resist him, standing firm The Unpardonable Sin Explained in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. NIV

Doubt is the first stage of sin, which is missing the mark. For an individual to move from missing the mark to blasphemy is a gradual process that does not happen overnight. Without the Holy Spirit, we are doomed to fall into doubt and led into the unpardonable sin, unbelief.

Amen

For more information on Spiritual Warfare, please read the article, All about Spiritual Warfare, on this website.

Questions, comments, and concerns may be left below.

Blessings!!

 

 

 

Saturday vs. Sunday Worship

There has been a perpetual debate concerning the correct day of worship to God. The most traditional choice has been Sundays. However, is that what God intended, or is that another man-made adaptation that has been forced upon Christians? Please read on as we investigate Saturday vs. Sunday worship.

What is Worship?

The investigation begins with the basics: what is worship?

According to The Nelson’s Bible Dictionary, worship is the “Reverent devotion and allegiance pledged to God; the rituals or ceremonies by which this reverence is expressed. The English word worship comes from the Old English word worthship, a word which denotes the worthiness of the one receiving the special honor or devotion.”

So, “Reverent devotion and allegiance pledged to God.” Why does God deserve such devotion and allegiance? Well, because He is our Creator, Master, and Savior. He loves us and He desires our love and devotion to Him. How do we show our love to Him? By obeying His commandments that He has placed before us (Ex.20:6, John 14:15). His command to love Him and obey Him is part of the first of the Ten Commandments which reads, “but showing love to a thousand [generations] of those who love me and keep my commandments.” NIV

Saturday vs. Sunday Worship

Worship is more than a day; worship is a lifestyle. We are to have love and devotion for God in our hearts each and every day. However, God desires for us to set aside a special day strictly for devotion to Him. This is a day when we put aside the daily grind of life and rest in Him. So does it matter which day we set aside for this special day?

The answers to all of life can be found in the Scriptures. Therefore, that is where we must go for the answer to this question as well. Ex. 20:8-11

8 Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. 11 For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. NIV

This is the fourth of the Ten Commandments. God is very specific with this commandment. First, He said, to remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy meaning separate, sanctified, and blessed. Because “the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it Holy.”

Next, six days” we are to labor and work but on “the seventh day,” we are to honor the Sabbath. Sabbath is a time of rest and worship. It is a time to rest physically from work and worship, which refreshes the soul spiritually. Every man and his entire household are to honor the Sabbath.

Sunday is the first day of the week; Saturday is the seventh and last day of the week. So why are New Testament Christians worshipping on Sunday? The general consensus is the celebration of Christ’s resurrection as the reason for Sunday worship. The following Scriptures are used as a basis for this practice:

Matt 28:1

After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. NIV

There is no mention or sign of Sunday reverence in this text. In addition, there is no reference to any worship of any form. This verse simply states that before sunrise on the first day of the week, these women went to examine the tomb.

Mark 16:1-2

1 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. 2 Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb. NIV

These two verses of Scripture tell us that the first day of the week is behind the Sabbath. They additionally tell us that these women were on their way to the tomb on the morning of the first-day pre­pared to embalm the body of Jesus, quite a difference for individuals who should have rested if Sunday had any Biblical sacred­ness. These women had nothing on their minds of Sunday sacredness.

The reason they did not anoint Jesus’ body the day before was that it was the Sabbath—the day of rest.

Mark 16:9

 9 When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. NIV

Saturday vs. Sunday Worship
This is the commandment from God regarding the Sabbath.

Again, there is no reference to a day of rest here. This was quite the opposite, a day of action. This was the beginning of a new era. If it were meant to be a day of rest, it would appear that Jesus would have waited until Monday.

There is no Scriptural reference or hint that these women ever dreamed of a possible change of the Sabbath.

Also for sure, if Jesus had intended that Sunday should be ob­served as a day of rest commemorating His resurrection, He would have certainly told His disciples. What He did instruct them to do was what we now know as communion in remembrance of Him.

Jesus established the Communion on a Thurs­day night before His crucifixion. If the Communion service makes a day holy, then we should be observing Thursday as the Sabbath. In addition, the Communion has no relation to the resurrection of Christ, but rather, refers to His death. For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.” (1 Corin­thians 11:26 NIV).

Luke 24:1

1 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. NIV

Luke confirms the intention of these close friends and followers of Jesus. They went to the tomb set on giving the body of Jesus a proper burial. In Luke 23:56, the verse right before this one, we are told that these loyal disciples of Jesus the day before by stating, “…they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment.” Therefore, the disciples acknowledged and obeyed the commandment of honoring the Sabbath.

Then, the next day after
the Sabbath, they were ready to engage in a demanding day’s work. There is no hint of the change of the Sabbath to the first day of the week.

John 20:1

1 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. NIV

This text was written by John the disciple about sixty years after the resurrection of Jesus. Yet he never mentioned any acknowledgment of a change in the Sabbath. The disciple who himself felt closest to Jesus, apparently had never heard of a first-day commemoration of the resurrection with a change of the Sabbath day.

John 20:19

19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” NIV

Here the disciples were assem­bled for fear of the Jews and the doors were shut. This was hardly a celebration of Jesus’ resurrection!

In Mark 16:14, Jesus admonished His disciples for their inability to believe that He had risen. Again, there is, therefore, no possible chance that they were gathered on this occasion to commemorate the resurrection.

What these verses confirm is the day of the week these events occurred with a focus on the resurrection.

In addition, it is clear that nowhere in the four Gospels is there the tiniest hint of Sunday sacredness. Sunday was a day of work.

Acts 20:7, 11, 13

7 On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. Paul spoke to the people and, because he intended to leave the next day, kept on talking until midnight 11 Then he went upstairs again and broke bread and ate. After talking until daylight, he left. 13 We went on ahead to the ship and sailed for Assos, where we were going to take Paul aboard. He had made this arrangement because he was going there on foot. NIV

There is no indication in this passage that this or any day that Paul spoke to people was a sanctified day for worship. He simply spoke to the people because he was departing the next day.

It is very important to note that Jesus Christ Himself sanctioned the Sabbath. In Matt 12:8 Jesus is quoted as saying: For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.

Conclusions Regarding New Testament Sunday Worship

  • True Christians regard the Scriptures as God’s Word and the authoritative guide of life.The Word of God
  • There is no Scripture in the New Testament where there is a command to worship on Sunday as a memorial to the resurrection of Jesus or for any other reason.
  • Based on that, the disciples did not have any plans to make Sunday a day of worship.
  • There is no indication in the New Testament that the disciples or Jesus altered the day of worship from the seventh-day Sabbath to the first day of Sunday.
  • Therefore, since there is no scriptural evidence that the disciples changed the worship day of Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday, it is evident, that this adaptation must have been adopted by the Christian church subsequent to the writing of the Bible and the death of all the disciples.

But why? How?

The Origin of Sunday Worship

So what happened? Why was the day of worship changed from Saturday the seventh-day Sabbath as God commanded to Sunday the first day of the week? How could this possibly happen?

It goes back to history, AD 312 when the Roman Pagan Emperor Constantine the Great converted to Christianity. During his reign, Christianity began to evolve to become the dominant religion of the Roman Empire.Saturday vs Sunday Worship - Constantine

Some scholars claim that his principal goal was to gain unanimous submission and approval to his authority from every class. Therefore, he chose Christianity to conduct his political propaganda, with the impression that it was the most suitable religion that could fit with the Imperial cult
(see also Sol Invictus).

Nevertheless, under Constantine’s dynasty, Christianity grew throughout the Roman Empire, initiating the time of the State church of the Roman Empire. Whether Constantine genuinely transformed to Christianity or continued to be loyal to Paganism
is a subject of debate with historians.

A general consensus is that Constantine’s change to Christianity was just another instrument of realpolitik
in his hands for the purpose of serving his political interest, which was maintaining control of the Empire while keeping it united.

Sunday worship, practiced by the pagans, originated in Babylon where they worshipped the Sun and named the day Sun-day. For some reason, Christians in Rome celebrated this first day of the week also to celebrate Christ. Church historian Socrates Scholasticus (5th century) wrote: “For although almost all churches throughout the world celebrate the sacred mysteries [of the Lord’s Supper] on the Sabbath of every week, yet the Christians of Alexandria and at Rome, on account of some ancient tradition, have ceased to do this.” This ”ancient tradition” was one of paganism

Notice that according to Socrates Scholasticus and other historians (e.g. Sozomen), this Sunday worship was only practiced by the Christians of Rome and Alexandria. Rome and Alexandria are where the Babylonian religion came to rest.

This is where the practice of Christians worshipping on Sunday originated. [More details on this in a forthcoming article]Saturday vs. Sunday Worship

Constantine knew that pagans throughout the empire worshiped the sun on “the first day of the week,” known as Sunday and he discovered that many Christians and especially in Rome and Alexandria also celebrated “the first day of the week” because Christ rose from the dead on that day (this was a compromising excuse). Therefore, Constantine as a canny political architect conspired to join Christianity and paganism to strengthen his decaying empire. Therefore, he developed a plan to join both groups on the general platform of Sunday keeping. Consequently, on March 7, 321 A.D., he passed his famous national Sunday law.

In 330 A.D., Constantine relocated his capital from Rome to Constantinople, which is now modern-day Istanbul, consequently preparing the way for the Roman Catholic Popes to be in power in Rome as the successors of Constantine. As the Papal (Catholic) Church increased in power, it opposed Sabbath observance in support of Sunday sacredness and made the day change official in the Council of Laodicea (A.D. 363-364). On this occasion, the Catholic Church mandated 59 Canon laws. Canon law 29 reads as follows: Canon XXIX:
Christians must not Judaize by resting on the Sabbath, but must work on that day, rather honouring the Lord’s Day; and, if they can, resting then as Christians. But if any shall be found to be Judaizers, [Worshipping on the Sabbath] let them be anathema [shut out] from Christ.” At this point, Christian Sabbath-keepers were considered to be heretics. This in essence joined church and state.

But on what authority did the Catholic church institute this change? James Gibbons, Roman Catholic Theologian and author of the book “The Faith of our Fathers” wrote: But you may read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, and you will not find a single line authorizing the sanctification of Sunday. The Scriptures enforce the religious observance of Saturday, a day which we never sanctify.”

In other words, it is the authority of the Catholic church that changed the observance from Saturday to Sunday, not the New Testament Scriptures. This is an amazing admission! Other religious leaders admit that the Bible nowhere authorizes Sunday as a new Sabbath Day.

The Takeaway

Constantine’s plan was a success and his Sunday law for sun worship was accepted by the Papal Church and the Sabbath to Sunday change complete. The systematization of Sunday worship began with Emperor Constantine and concluded with the Papal (Catholic) church. Therefore, it is a tradition of men and not a commandment of God.

History as well as, Scripture substantiate that in pagan Roman times: prior, throughout, and subsequent to the coming of Jesus Christ, Sun-day was the most important day of worship in the Roman Empire. Most of the Christian religions today erroneously presume that this pagan day of worship is holy. It is not! The Holy day of worship is the Sabbath as sanctioned and commanded by God.

God knew from the onset that Satan and man would misrepresent His appointments by altering the time. This particular part of the discussion will also be covered in detail in a forthcoming article.

If Christians could only grasp the fact that the fourth Commandment is just as much an eternal Moral law as the other nine. Again it reads: “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work…”  Ex 20:8-10

It is time for Christians to acknowledge the truth and obey all of God’s Commandments. This is the best way to receive blessings from God and reap the benefits.

Amen!

Any questions, comments, and concerns may be left below. You will receive a response!

Blessings to all!

 

 

 

What is Happening to America Today?

There is a mystery going on these days. Strange things are happening without any rhyme or reason. Common sense isn’t half as common as it used to be. Wrong is becoming right and right is becoming wrong. Many are unaware, but some are asking; what is happening to America today?

America Under Attack

There are no foreign guns, no tanks, no fighter jets, no cannons, no torpedoes, and no foreign soldiers on our soil. Yet, we are under attack. This attack is much more insidious than the usual weapons of war and that is what makes it so effective. This war is not carnal but spiritual (2 Cor. 10:4). What we need to understand is that what happens in the natural, first occurs in the spiritual.

This attack is hitting the nation at the very core, the foundation of its existence, chipping away at the foundation of the structure. In addition, if the powers that be don’t soon recognize what is happening, there is going to be a mighty shaking and crumbling.

The Evidence

What went on at the Capitol on January 6th
is merely a symptom of what is really taking place in the United States.

Let’s look at the manifestation of this attack.

Crime and violence – Gun violence is on the rise precipitously with no end in sight, and the government cannot reach a consensus on how to curb it. We are literally shooting each other in the streets. We do not need a foreign army to kill us we are doing it ourselves!

The Spirit of rebellion is running rampant among us to the point that we no longer respect authority and rebel at the consequences. We simply want to have our own way.

Immorality – We have drifted away from the standards commanded by God and have set our own standards chipping away at the principle of moral right and wrong. Mankind has become a god unto himself and set his own standard for righteousness, right and wrong, morality, and convinced himself that there is no God.

This standard has manifested itself in the following ways:

  • God’s law no longer applies
  • God’s Commandments have been abolished
  • God’s Commandments are no longer relevant
  • God’s standing of righteousness is no longer binding
  • God’s Law has been amended.
  • God’s Word has been abridged

Now, what do the Scriptures say about this mindset? Prov. 28:26 reads:

26 He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered.

Here we have the contrast between the wisdom of those that trust in the Lord and those that trust the folly of self-trust.

First, we have the character of a fool: He trusts to his “own heart,” to his own wisdom and counsels, his own strength and sufficiency, his own merit and righteousness, and the good opinion he has of himself; he that does this is a fool because he who exercise this kind of trust, not only trust in that which “is deceitful above all things”—his heart (Jer. 17:9) but that has often deceived him. This implies that it is the nature of a wise man to put his trust in the Lord, and in his power and promise, and to follow his guidance (Prov. 3:5, 6. 2). The comfort of a wise man: that is he that walks wisely and does not trust in his own heart, but is humble and self-diffident, and goes on in the strength of the Lord God, shall be delivered; when the fool on the other hand, who trusts in his own heart, shall ultimately be destroyed.

This is because man’s heart, which is deceitful and desperately wicked (Jer. 17:9), will without fail deceive him.

This spirit of self-trust and denial of God has permeated into the upper echelons of leadership in the government causing a huge problem for the entire nation.

Let’s look at the Scriptural confirmation of this phenomenon. Rom 1:18-32

What is happening to America Today - God's Wrath
When a nation ignores God it becomes a sinking boat into depravity

18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles.

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator — who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed indecent acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion. 28 Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them. NIV

This passage contains the last half of chapter one and depicts a picture of the human predicament before a holy God. Further, it contains God’s wrath against mankind and the consequences have been disastrous as sin continues to increase.

Verses 19-20 – These verses make the point that God shows His anger against sinful and wicked individuals who cover up the truth of God through their wickedness, even though they are fully aware of the truth about God because He has made it evident to them. It is obvious through the creation of the world which demonstrates His eternal power and divine nature. Therefore, there is no excuse to not know God.

Verse 21 – We see and live in God’s creation every day. For this reason, how What is happening to America Todaycan we deny God? Scripture further answers that in Ps 14:1,The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.” NIV

Although they knew God, they refused to glorify Him or give thanks for His blessings (i.e. food, clothing, shelter, salvation, life). This is simply the failure to recognize God. When He is removed from the equation that only opens the door to evil.

When we eliminate God, we lose our standard or reference point from which to work. When anything goes, everything becomes useless.

To neglect what is good unavoidably leads to perpetuating what is evil. Lack of appreciation may appear to be a small thing, but it commences a downward spiral into depravity. To forget to thank God for all He is and all He has done reveals dangerous self-centeredness. The effect of this is darkness, pride, futile thinking and planning, blindness, and lastly total removal from God that erupts into a deluge of sin.

When God is removed from human thought, much more is lost than gained. Truth and absolutes are quickly abandoned and everything is subjective to opinions and feelings, including God Himself.

God created mankind with a void that needs to be filled. Therefore, something or someone must be at the center of life. This void is to be filled with God but without Him, we make ourselves central. Subsequently, everything we try is futile in giving satisfaction. As with Solomon, we find out that everything is “meaningless! Meaningless! … Utterly meaningless!” (Eccl 1:1-2 NIV). Living for oneself or some other idol is utterly futile (see Daniel 5:23 ff.). When God is removed from the equation, anything goes and everything becomes futile.

The “heart” is the center of intelligence, feelings, and moral choice. Hearts become foolish when they refuse to recognize God (more on this in verse 22). Useless thinking is followed by useless living. At this point, both mind and heart become completely lacking of light. When confused thinking becomes a lasting mindset, individuals are unable to turn to God.

Verse 22 – In this verse, we have the word “fool” (s) again. Without God, individuals become so caught up in their own professing wisdom that they are actually fools.

Acknowledging self instead of God is seen as a sign of sophistication and intelligence. However, by Biblical definition, any individual saying he or she cannot consider there is a God, or refusing to accept God, is acknowledging being a fool (Ps 14:1). The proof that God exists is so plain and clear that to ignore it is simply foolish.

Verse 23 – Mentioned earlier was the void that God placed in mankind. This verse elaborates on what is used to fill this void intended for God. Instead of worshipping God, man creates images of his own to worship.

Whether the images were created out of stone, metal, wood, or are humans elevated to the status of gods, they lack the glory that belongs only to God. These artificial gods might inspire fear or reverence, but they undoubtedly do not deserve worship. Only God is to be worshipped.

Verse 24 – In this verse, we get a glimpse of what is in the “deceitful” and What is happening to America Today - God's Wrath“desperately wicked” (Jer. 17:9) heart. Go turns over a heart that has turned against Him. One of these manifestations is sexual immorality. Sinful desires, then, cover a multitude of lusts. More on this to follow.

Verse 25 – Just as people exchange the glory of God for lackluster images (vs.23), they additionally trade what is known about God for a deliberate distortion. This falsehood is the belief that something or someone is to be worshipped in place of the one true God. Instead of worshipping the creator, the creation is worshipped—the things God made rather than God Himself.

Verses 26 & 27- More sexual immorality. The downward spiral continues to the point that God’s gift of sex becomes utterly depraved.

Verse 28 – People may start with some knowledge of God, but somewhere along the line, they chose not to glorify him nor thank him any longer. This generally leads to questions and doubts that led them to no longer recognize God as God. At that point, they refuse “to retain the knowledge of God.” Moreover, when they make the choice to reject God, He allows them to do it. As a result, their minds become depraved, and the ability to distinguish between right and wrong is lost. Once the conscience is tainted, there is little hope. “To do what ought not to be done”
is a sign that the people were not just doing things that were offensive to God, but additionally offensive by human standards.

God does not generally halt mankind from making choices against his will. He has granted free will to mankind and allows the declaration of the so-called independence from him, even though He knows that in time we will become victims to our rebellious choices. In other words, we will lose our freedom not to sin. There is no worse slavery than to be enslaved by sin.

Verses 29-31, Paul carries on to name the shocking consequences of human desire operating without godly control.

The Takeaway

A nation without God is a nation in chaos. The Scripture reads in Prov. 14:34, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” NIV

Iniquity, abiding in a nation, places disgrace upon it: Sin is a condemnation to any nation or kingdom and leaves them disgraceful among their What is happening to America Todayneighbors. For example, the citizens of Israel were often instances of both parts of this equation; when they were good, they were great but when they forsook God all the nations about them insulted them and trampled upon them. It is therefore the interest and duty of leaders to use their power for the suppression of iniquity and support of virtue.

The fact of the matter is, America is under Spiritual attack and is in the midst of  losing the battle of spiritual warfare.

Life Application

A sinful nation will eventually come to shame (this is the future of our land in the US). This is a slow burn.

Unfortunately, Paul’s discussion in our text is not out of date. The same rebellion against God is alive and well in the human hearts of our nation. We fail to realize that we can be trampled upon just as ancient Israel was. History does indeed repeat itself; especially when lessons aren’t learned from it.

The United States has been on a downward spiral for some time as it heads toward becoming a secular nation. As mentioned earlier, what happens in the natural first happens in the Spiritual. America is losing its battle of spiritual warfare. Nevertheless “our struggle is not against flesh and blood” (Eph 6:12 NIV). For more on spiritual warfare, please see the article, All about Spiritual Warfare, on this website.

The capitulation of the battle began with the removal of prayer from our schools and has progressed steadily from there. America has embraced social behaviors that grossly transgress God’s laws. A few are mentioned below

Abortion – Abortion is the termination of human life and the Bible is clear about murder as well as the sacrificing of children. Yet, it is legal in this country. Statistics show that from the year 2005 to 2018, 10,121,000 legal abortions were performed in the US.

Homosexuality – Homosexuality is regarded d an acceptable practice by many in our nation today — even by some churches! Many homosexuals feel that their desires are normal and taunt they have a right to express them. However, society does not set the standard for God’s law and this is a clear violation. Despite this, according to a survey conducted by UCLA’s Williams Institute, there are 10,338,000 homosexuals (LGBT) in the US.

Same-Sex Marriage – Further condoning of homosexuality to the point of marriage between individuals of the same sex even though the Scripture never confirmed acceptance of this practice. However, according to a 2019 population survey, there are 543,000 same-sex married couple households and 469,000 households with same-sex unmarried partners living together in the US.

Transgenderism
– A branch of homosexuality that involves the altering of one’s behavior concerning their natural gender. God has created us in His image as male or female and we are to conduct ourselves as such. Yet, according to a 2019 survey conducted by UCLA’s Williams Institute, 1,397, 150 individuals are transgender.

These are some of the major manifestations of the disregard for God and His laws.

How can we tout, God bless America when we flagrantly shake our fists in God’s face and transgress His laws? The question becomes, why should God bless America?

This is the result of what is made clear in our main Scripture text (vss. 21-22); disregarding God and professing ourselves to be wise we are becoming fools.

We are so wise that:

  • We can’t pass common-sense laws for gun control to help fight gun violence
  • We cannot make common-sense decisions about taking a vaccine against a life-threatening disease.
  • We rebel against common-sense methods of protecting ourselves (e.g. wearing masks).
  • We rebel against authority, bringing disenchantment upon ourselves, and rebel further against the consequences.
  • We place every issue on the stage of political theater and politicize everything instead of seeking God’s wisdom.
  • We are depending solely on the government to answer our problems instead of God
  • The government is in constant conflict about how to help the citizens by failing to implement common-sense solutions.
  • We want to decriminalize practically everything, including illicit drugs
  • Our form of government, democracy, is under threat through insurrection, voter suppression, etc.
  • We have made our own idols to worship (careers, homes, jewelry, cars, money, children, education, etc). Who needs God?

We are so wise that we have become divided to the point of chronic dysfunctionality.

The Solution

Not all is lost for America if we come to our senses. The prescription is in the Scriptures.

2 Chron. 7:14 reads:

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. NIV

God has provided provisions for sin.

  • – We must humble ourselves and admit to our sins
  • – We must pray to God and ask for forgiveness
  • – We must seek God on a continual basis
  • – We must repent, turning from our sinful behavior

Real repentance is more than talk—it is a change in behavior. Whether we What is happening to America Today - Repentancesin independently, collectively, or as a nation, following these steps will lead to forgiveness. God will answer our sincere prayers.

We need a national day of repentance that commences an earnest effort to seek God for forgiveness so that He can heal our land.

He is willing but we must make the choice to seek Him. If we cannot do it collectively as a nation, we are ultimately responsible for ourselves. Therefore, we must strive to become part of the remnant that will be saved.

Amen

Questions, comments, and concerns may be left below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

All about Baptism

Baptism is a topic that concerns a fundamental tenet of Christianity. It raises questions particularly for those new to the Christian faith. This article is all about baptism to answer those questions.

What is Baptism?

The root word for baptism is ‘bapt’, which has several variations: baptize, baptism, baptizer, etc. It is used in reference to washing and dipping.

Baptism is a Christian religious ceremony or rite. It is when water is either sprinkled or poured upon an individual or is immersed in water. It is the rite of induction into the Christian community. It symbolizes the individual’s identification with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Some Christian denominations perform the baptism of infants as a covenant sign of identification in the Christian community of the faithful. However, the majority of Christian groups practice what is called believer’s baptism. Here is how the Scriptures explain it. Rom 6:3-6

(3) Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? (4) We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

(5) If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. (6) For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin—NIV

In this chapter, Paul is addressing the Christian’s death to sin in principle.

What is Water Baptism all about?

Baptism is a representation of a spiritual truth. Baptism follows an individual’s decision to trust in Christ marking him or her as a follower of Christ, and a member of the Christian community.

Individuals who have faith in Christ are baptized into him and baptized into his death; in other words, they are joined with him. Just as Christ died, we die to our old, sinful lifestyle, and a new life begins. Scripture confirms this precept in 2 Cor. 5:17, which read: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” NIV

Immersion is the form of baptism for this principle— that is, Christians are completely buried briefly in water. It is recognized that this form of baptism represents being buried with Christ, thus the death and burial of the old way of life as a result. Rising up out of the water symbolizes resurrection to new life with Christ, in addition to the promise of a future bodily resurrection. As Jesus Christ was raised from the dead … we may also live a new life. If we consider our old, sinful life as dead and buried, we have a vigorous motive to defy sin. We can then willfully choose to treat the desires and temptations of the old nature as though they were dead. Subsequently, we can carry on enjoying the wonderful new life with Jesus. As the Scripture reads in Gal 3:27, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”

John the Baptist also taught baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. Matt 3:11

11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:

Here John the Baptist clarified that his baptism with the water from the Jordan River demonstrated repentance or a willingness to turn from sin. This was the initiation of the spiritual process. John baptized individuals as a sign that they had requested God to forgive their sins and had determined to live as he desired them to live. Baptism was an external sign of commitment. However, to be effective, it had to be and still needs to be accompanied by an “inward” change of attitude leading to a changed life as it does today. John’s baptism did not yield salvation. However, it prepared an individual to receive the coming Messiah and accept his message and his baptism.

The statement from John, “he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire” exposed the character of the one who was more powerful arriving after John as the promised Messiah (Jesus). The coming of the Spirit had been prophesied as part of the Messiah’s arrival (Isa. 44:3, Jer. 31:31-34, Ezek. 36:26-27).

All about Baptism - The Great Commission
The Great Commission!

Perhaps the most significant baptism is the one Christ taught in the Great Commission. Matt 28:18-20:

(18) Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

First, we see that God gave Jesus power over heaven and earth, an all-encompassing concept that entails divine status. That is to say, nothing is outside of his supreme control.

Second, based on this authority, Jesus told his disciples to go and make disciples as they preached, baptized, and taught. “Make disciples” meant instructing new Christians on how to follow Jesus, to submit to His Lordship, and to take up his mission of compassionate service.

“Baptism” is significant because it unifies a Christian believer with Jesus Christ in his or her death to sin and resurrection to new life. Baptism represents surrender to Christ, an eagerness to live God’s way, and identification with God’s covenant people. Baptism is decreed by Jesus. To baptize “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost”
affirms the reality of the Trinity, this concept coming directly from Jesus himself.  For more information on the Trinity, please read the article, All about the Trinity, on this website.

Is Baptism Required for Salvation?

Baptism is not required for salvation. Baptism is not a necessity for salvation because we are justified by faith. Rom 5:1-2

(1) Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. NIV

Eph 2:8-19

8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. NIV

Therefore, it is evident that we are saved by faith—not by faith and a ceremony (works). A religious ceremony is a set of activities or rites executed by someone. For example, circumcision was a ceremony where one individual performed a religious rite on another individual. Similarly, baptism is also a ceremony where one individual performs a religious rite on another individual; however, we are saved by faith alone, and any works we do, including ceremonies, will not help.

Works (action) are things we do as a result of salvation. James 2:17, “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” NIV

If baptism was necessary for salvation, then no one could be saved on his or her deathbed or children that had not been baptized. Also, the bedridden could not be saved. Remember Jesus granted salvation to the criminal on the cross (who had not been baptized).

Therefore, baptism is not required for salvation. However, it is a crucial rite in the Christian community and theological revelation of the New Testament.

Baptism is an external display and confirmation of one’s salvation.

 Why was Jesus Baptized?

When Jesus requested John the Baptist to baptize Him, John balked at the idea. Jesus explained that it would be the proper way for them to “fulfill all righteousness.”  [Matt. 3:15]

What did He mean? It seems that Jesus saw his baptism as advancing God’s work.

The fundamental reason that Jesus was baptized was to fulfill the Old Testament requirements of entering into the priesthood after the order of Melchizedek.

While even the greatest prophets (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel) were required to confess their sinfulness and desire for repentance, Jesus didn’t need to admit sin because He was sinless (John 8:46; 2 Cor. 5:21; Heb 4:15; 1 John 3:5). Although Jesus did not require forgiveness, He was baptized for the following reasons:

(1) To confess sin on behalf of the nation, as did Isaiah, Ezra, and Nehemiah had done (see Ezra 9:2; Neh. 1:6; 9:1 ff.; Isa 6:5).

(2) To carry out God’s mission and advance God’s work in the world.

(3) To show support for John’s ministry.

(4) To initiate his public ministry in order to bring the message of salvation to all individuals.

(5) To identify with the penitent people of God, such as with humanness and sin.

(6) To give us an example to follow.

We see how pleased God was with Jesus’ baptism in Matt 3:16-17:

16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

The illustration of the Spirit of God coming down from heaven like a dove All about Baptism - Jesus' Baptismwas a sign that Jesus was the Messiah and that the age of the Spirit predicted by the prophets was formally beginning (Isa 61:1).

The downward Spirit portrayed a soft, quiet, but energetic presence arriving to anoint Jesus. It wasn’t that Jesus required to be filled with the Spirit (as if there was any lack in him) because he came “from the Holy Spirit” (1:20) since his conception. Rather, this was his regal anointing.

Baptism is a joyous external act of transformation and confirmation. There is nothing like a fresh start in life—especially with Christ!

Amen

Any questions, comments, or concerns may be left below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

 

 

 

Authority and the Bible

The United States of America is experiencing a big dose of civil unrest: particularly against the police. There are numerous instances involving police brutality and excessive force. With the advent of the Smartphone giving access to practically everyone to cameras these days, these events have been bought to the spotlight. This has led to increased scrutiny and public outcry against the authorities, specifically the police. While this outcry and scrutiny are justifiable in many instances, is it the total answer? Will it bring change? What does the Bible say about authority? It is time for us, especially Christians, to take a close look at authority and the Bible.

What is Authority?

According to Nelson’s Bible Dictionary, authority is “The power or right to do something, particularly to give orders and see that they are followed. The word authority as used in the Bible usually means a person’s right to do certain things because of the position or office he [or she] holds. This word emphasizes the legality and right, more than the physical strength, needed to do something.”

Authority and the Bible

Now that the definition of authority has been established, what does the Bible say about Authority?

Rom 13:1-6

13 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. [cf. 1 kings 10:9] (2) Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. (3) For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. (4) For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. (5) Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.

(6)This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. NIV

This is what the bible says about power and authority.

Ok, let’s take a close look at this passage.

Verse 1Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.

The Scripture says, “Everyone must submit.” Submission means cooperation, loyalty, and a willingness to obey.

Looking at the context of this passage, Paul was writing to Christians in Rome that were living under an authoritarian and oppressive government. Even so, in spite of them ruling in an ungodly way, Paul advised them to submit to this authority.

Why? The authorities that exist have been established by God.”
Authorities are established by God. Though they may not act as such, even though they are operating in an ungodly way, they have been established by God.

Verse 2Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.

When citizens rebel against the authorities, they are ultimately rebelling

The Holy Bible
The Inspired Word of God

against God because it is God that has placed them there. Further, those who disobey bring judgment down on themselves. When citizens disobey the authorities they are simply on the wrong side of the law and there are consequences for that action. Part of the reason for so many police killings and incidents is rebellion against authority.

Verse 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you.

In this verse, Paul is addressing the proper function of authority and government: to uphold those who are right and punish those who are wrong. If we do what is right, there is nothing to fear. This is the will of God for authority.

Verse 4 For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.

The Sword presents authority and the powers have God-given authority. It is important to understand that it was given for our good. However, if we rebel against this authority, we can expect wrath and punishment. No one is above the law. Therefore, when we behave as evildoers and lawbreakers we are treated as such. All communities are responsible to obey the law (vs.1).

There is more Biblical wisdom on this in Prov. 24:21-22:

21 Fear the Lord and the king [the government], my son, and do not join with the rebellious, 22 for those two will send sudden destruction upon them,and who knows what calamities they can bring?

If we do not want to be treated the same as the rebellious, we should not engage as they do.

Verse 5Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.

Responsible citizens have two (2) good reasons to submit to their government: to avoid punishment and to take note of their own conscience, for it is the conscience that will prompt them to do what is right. Christian believers especially know in their consciences that obeying the authorities pleases God. If we are to maintain a good conscience and honor God, we must honor authority.

Verse 6This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing.

We actually pay for this authority to protect us from the lawless. The duty of government and authority is to serve and protect. Therefore, why should we not submit to them?

To Summarize

The present situation is beginning to resemble Rome. But even in living under an ungodly and cruel government such as Rome, the Scriptures state that citizens are to obey their authority. Otherwise, expect no more than wrath and punishment. The powers, the government is placed in power by God and will ultimately have to answer to God for whatever injustices have been committed against its citizens. Since this power was not given to us as individuals, we have no right to rebel or disobey and expect any other outcome. Therefore, it behooves us to obey and leave the rest to God.

Life Application for Today

Today, concerning the government, the big emphasis of concern is on the police and the excessive use of force—rightly so. Police reform is drastically needed to balance order in our cities. However, something is missing in this effort. If this missing element is not placed on the scale, it will never balance. This missing element is the citizen (s).

Authority and the Bible
We can’t put all of the weight on government authority. True justice requires a balance between citizens and authority.

All of the effort to attain this balance is being directed toward the police. However, what about the responsibility of the citizens? We have seen in the above passage of Scripture that it is the responsibility of the citizen to obey the law. Citizens must be accountable for their actions as does the Police.

The postmodernism movement has ushered in a toxic atmosphere of rebellion that includes rebelling against authority. This is particularly dangerous for our youth and they are suffering as a result. The community leaders of influence and all adults need to encourage our youth and one another to respect and obey the law. We must work on being better citizens.

We promote all sorts of social concerns through public service announcements (PSA’s). These include littering, the wearing of seat belts, anti-cigarette smoking, and being vaccinated.   Why not  PSA’s that promote an anti-crime movement that focuses on civil compliance to the laws – on being responsible citizens, working together with the authorities to attain and maintain peace. This climate will help to avoid arrests initially.

In most (not all) of the cases of excessive force that have reached national attention and notoriety, a balanced observation will yield a conclusion that an act on part of the citizen initiated action from the police. There is usually some form of resistance (e.g. running away, grabbing the officer’s weapons, disobeying commands, resisting handcuffs, etc.) that requires actions from an officer. While the officer’s actions in these cases may be excessive, if the citizen’s actions were in compliance with the law, perhaps no force would have been necessary initially. These actions from citizens only escalate the situation.

Even if we are approached for the wrong reason or what we may feel is the wrong reason, we must comply (vs. 2).

The Takeaway

There must be law and order in the land. The first step for law and order is obeying the law.

While the outcry for police reform is necessary, there is also a need for an outcry to submit to authority and obey the law instead of focusing solely on the actions of the police. Obedience to the law will cool the temperature and reduce the need for authoritative action. The more we obey the less of a need for police engagement.

In order for police reform to succeed, there must be obedience to the law. It is an imbalance to restrain the police and not address lawlessness. We must be careful not to restrain the police to the point of non-effectiveness. This will only lead to uncontrollable civil disobedience.

Balance is the key to life and God delights in balance and obedience. 1 Sam 15:22: “…To obey is better than sacrifice,”

Justice is a two-way street. Let’s look at the definition of justice from Nelson’s Bible Dictionary.

JUSTICE- “The practice of what is right and just. Justice (or “judgment,” KJV) specifies what is right, not only as measured by a code of law, but also by what makes for right relationships as well as harmony and peace.”

“The English term justice has a strong legal flavor. But the concept of justice in the Bible goes beyond the law courts to everyday life. The Bible speaks of “doing justice” (Ps 82:3; Prov. 21:3), whereas we speak of “getting justice.” Doing justice
is to maintain what is right or to set things right. Justice is done when honorable relations are maintained between husbands and wives, parents and children, employers and employees, government and citizens, and man and God. Justice refers to brotherliness in spirit and action.”

Any relationship is a two-way street, including the relationship between the government and the people! This must be a collaborative effort.  If we want to have a better relationship with the police, we must do our part and work on being better citizens. We must work together, not in rebellion.

This is what pleases God. Prov. 21:3,

3 To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice. KJV

Amen

Please feel free to leave any questions, comments, and concerns below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

 

 

 

The Benefits of Obedience to God

Obedience to God is the most important way for us to go through our lives. But, why? For starters, it is our way of showing our love to God and maintaining a relationship with Him. Additionally, there are benefits when we are obedient to God because He blesses us. So what are the benefits of obedience to God? What happens if we are not? The purpose of this article is to respond to these questions.

What is Obedience to God?

First, obedience is carrying out the word and will of another person. Since we are addressing obedience to God, this definition applies specifically to the will of God. Equally in the Old and New Testaments, the word obey is related to the idea of hearing. Obedience is a certain, active response to what an individual hears. God directs individuals to active obedience to His representation.

Nevertheless, as much as God desires man’s obedience, He does not force obedience but has always given mankind a choice since he created him. Let’s look at the choice God gave to Adam. Gen 2:16-17

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. KJV

God clearly gave Adam a choice; obey and live or disobey and die. Adam was God’s crowning creation. God created him in His own image (Gen 1:17), provided the best for him, and made a conditional covenant with him.

We all know the choice Adam made and he, as well as all of those that followed, has paid the price for that choice as we live in a post-Eden world.

Let’s fast forward some 2500 years when God delivered the Israelites from Egypt and led them into the wilderness of Sinai. There thru His servant Moses, He delivered His law and made a covenant with them. Ex 19:5-6

5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:

6 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

The Israelites were God’s chosen nation and if they kept His covenant, they would be above all the other nations on the earth.

Ex 23:22-25The Benefits of Obedience

22 But if thou shalt indeed obey his voice, and do all that I speak; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries.

23 For mine Angel shall go before thee, and bring thee in unto the Amorites, and the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Canaanites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites: and I will cut them off.

24 Thou shalt not bow down to their gods, nor serve them, nor do after their works: but thou shalt utterly overthrow them, and quite break down their images.

25 And ye shall serve the Lord your God, and he shall bless thy bread, and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee.

God through His conditional covenant promised to bless the Israelites mightly if they obeyed Him. The Israelites accepted this covenant (Exodus 19:7-8).

God promised to provide, protect, and usher them into the Promised Land (Exod. 3:8).

The Consequences of Disobedience to God

When the Israelites were on the verge of entering the Promised Land, the Lord through Moses requested men, leaders from each of the 12 tribes to go out and survey the Land and surmise how to approach it (Num. 13). However, 10 of the spies returned with a negative report and only two (Caleb and Joshua) yielded a positive one.

As a result, the Israelites rebelled to the point that they wanted to stone Moses, Aaron, Joshua, and Caleb (Num. 14). God appeared to Moses and threatened to wipe out the nation entirely but Moses interceded..again and God recanted. This wasn’t the first time Moses interceded on behalf of the Israelites (Num. 14:22). They were pretty rebellious.

Nevertheless, never the less, God still handed down a judgment against the people (Num. 14:23-38). All of the adults that had murmured, complained, and rebelled against God and refused to go into the Promised Land would wander in the wilderness for forty years and subsequently die in the wilderness without entering the Promised Land. Only their children would be allowed to enter the Promised Land.

After the forty years had passed, the new generation was about to enter the Promised Land. Moses had a meeting with the congregation and repeated the Laws of the covenant, and encouraged them to obey the Lord. He put before them the blessings of obedience and the curses of disobedience; life and death and encouraged them to choose life.

Deut 30:15-19The Benefits of Obedience

15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;

16 In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the Lord thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.

17 But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;

18 I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it.

19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:

Fast-forward 830 years only to discover that Israel did not choose life and remain faithful to God. Instead, they engaged in idolatry and raised God’s anger.

In the book of Ezekiel, the announcement of judgment is found in chapters 5 & 6.

Ezek 6:11-14

11 Thus saith the Lord God; Smite with thine hand, and stamp with thy foot, and say, Alas for all the evil abominations of the house of Israel! for they shall fall by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence.

12 He that is far off shall die of the pestilence; and he that is near shall fall by the sword; and he that remaineth and is besieged shall die by the famine: thus will I accomplish my fury upon them.

13 Then shall ye know that I am the Lord, when their slain men shall be among their idols round about their altars, upon every high hill, in all the tops of the mountains, and under every green tree, and under every thick oak, the place where they did offer sweet savour to all their idols.

14 So will I stretch out my hand upon them, and make the land desolate, yea, more desolate than the wilderness toward Diblath, in all their habitations: and they shall know that I am the Lord.

Man’s failure to obey God results in judgment. In the Old Testament covenant between God and man, obedience was the basis for knowing God’s blessing and favor (Ex 24:1-8). Samuel highlighted that God’s pleasure was not in sacrifice but obedience
(1 Sam 15:22). Even the promise of a new covenant emphasized obedience as God’s gift (Jer. 31:33).

However, throughout the Old Testament, man has chosen to disobey God and has paid the consequences of that disobedience.

God blesses obedience but judges disobedience.

A New CovenantThe Benefits of Obedience

Because the old covenant (The Old Testament) was not adhered to, God desired to establish a new covenant (The New Testament). Jer. 31:31-33:

31 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:

32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:

33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.

This new covenant arrived with the advent of Jesus Christ. Heb 9:11-15

11 But Christ came as High Priest
of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new testament, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.
NKJV

In the New Testament, the obedience of Christ stands in stark contrast to the disobedience of Adam. The disobedience of Adam brought death, but the perfect obedience of Christ brought grace, righteousness, and life (Rom 5:12-21).

Christ’s sacrificial death did away with the old system of redemption through the blood sacrifice of animals, and His shed blood was the only sacrifice needed for the redemption of sins allowing entrance into eternal life (John 3:16).

This is the Gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ!

Today’s Choice

The Promised Land for the Israelites was an earthly one. But today’s Promised Land is a spiritual one—eternal life! Even so, obedience still yields blessings for us as we live our lives today. We can be blessed in many ways while on earth. These blessings are individual and too numerous to name.

With this good news, man (mankind) today has a choice.

Take note of Jesus’ response when the rich young ruler asked Him what he must do to have eternal life. He said, “…if
you want to receive eternal life, keep the commandments.”
(Matt 19:17) TLC

Notice the word “if” which represents a condition. If we obey God, we will have eternal life. It also indicates that we can or cannot chose to obey.

Here is another one: John 14:23-24The Benefits of Obedience

Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. 24 Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me…”

Many say that they love God and His Son but still disobey. If we really love Jesus, we must obey His Words. I cannot think of anybody else I would rather have in my home!

Making the Wrong choice

Until Jesus returns man (mankind) will always have a choice and if the choice is to follow Christ, let us hold on to the faith that we profess. The Scriptures offer encouragement with this.

Heb 10:19-23

19 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. NKJV

The choice we make is not necessarily the final one. Free will allows us to change in either direction, to follow Jesus or not. However, we are warned against drawing back in the Scriptures.

Heb 10:26-31The Benefits of Obedience

26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.”  31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.  NKJV

If we chose to reject Christ at any point, either before accepting Christ or afterward, there is no longer a conduit from our sins but a conduit for judgment. [Rev. 20:11-15]

If we just look around us, we can see the fruits of disobedience.

I pray that we all choose to experience the benefits of obedience to God.

Amen

Questions, comments, and concerns are welcomed below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!

 

 

 

Living in the Days of Noah

Have you ever wondered what it was like living in the days of Noah? By the end of this article, you may discover that you don’t have to wonder as much as you may think.

The Days of Noah

Let’s first take a look at what the Bible says the days of Noah were like in Gen 6:5-8

5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

6 And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

7 And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. KJV

So we see that God observed that man’s wickedness was great upon the earth. By great, it is meant that man’s wickedness multiplied. Man committed increasingly more sin, more and more acts of wickedness. Society was not getting better, not becoming more and more righteous and godly.

Instead, society was becoming more lawless and crime-ridden, and sin became ubiquitous. Lawlessness and crime, immorality, and corruption were increasing more and more every year, instead of decreasing. The man’s wickedness had swept the earth; swept every place where man was. (How much like today!)

However, great wickedness does not only mean that sin multiplied, it also means that sin became even more extreme and terrible. Sin became: more mean and vile, more immoral and perverse, more fleshly and carnal.

Since Adam’s fall into sin, man had become exceedingly sinful and more and more bold in his sin. Man was now committing great wickedness upon the earth, and God saw man’s great wickedness. However, God observed something else about man as well.

He observed that every imagination and thought of man was evil—evil continuously—evil all the time. In other words, God saw that man was very depraved. Evil was a culture—a way of life.

Understand that this does not mean that man never does anything good. Total depravity means that man has a sinful nature; therefore, he fails and sins. Man cannot keep from sinning and doing wicked things. No matter how much man tries not to fail and sin, he will still find himself failing and sinning ever so often. [cf. Romans 7:18-19]

But the point is, in God’s eyes, man’s heart was evil, and notice that it was only evil; that is, it was corrupted and contaminated and short of perfection. Anything less than perfection is evil because it stands opposed to God and His perfection.

In verse 6, we see that God grieved over man and that He had ever created man. So, one may ask, how could God ever regret that He had made man?

Because man was condemning himself, cutting himself off and separating himself from God forever, and dooming himself to spend eternity in hell apart from God. This was not the purpose for which God had made man and it grieved Him greatly. Therefore, God regretted that He had ever made man.

In verse 7, we see that God Judged man. This is because man had aroused the holiness and wrath of God against sin. God is love and in His love, He reaches out to man. But God is also just and holy and His holiness has to act Living in the Days of Noah - Judgement Genesis 6:7just as His love acts. God’s holiness has to strike out against injustices and immoralities and against all wickedness—to protect His name.

Being perfect, God has to correct all the injustices and wrongs of the earth. Consequently, He had to judge and condemn man for his wickedness. This grieved God to the depths of His heart.

Nevertheless, God judged and condemned man to be destroyed, wiped off the face of the earth—both man and land animals because the whole creation was corrupted. The Hebrew word translated as destroy is descriptive: it means to blot out completely.

We see in verse 8 that Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. We will come back to this later.

Are we Living in the Days of Noah?

Well, let’s look at this. In the US, the country has become increasingly secular and sacrilegious. The population has condoned a plethora of ungodly practices and doctrines. It has legally embraced abortion and same-sex marriage. There has been an assault on the Scriptures to discredit and disregard them. There has been an attack on the freedom of religion to bend toward the secular way of thinking. There is corruption within the church including homosexuality, and child pornography, and pedophilia.

The government is corrupt and dysfunctional with a leader who lives in an alternative reality, and who thinks only of himself instead of the country and has placed the country on a path of division and confusion and death. As a result, the country is ideologically split politically and morally.

There is civil unrest because of the increasingly apparent social injustice, inequality, and the failure to correct it. Citizens are shooting and killing each other, looting and destroying property.

The citizens are confused and in denial. The country is in the midst of a deadly pandemic and yet, many refuse to follow simple and easy preventative measures that would protect others and themselves. They want to continue on with life as though the pandemic doesn’t exist. They say, “This is America” “we have freedom of choice” “stop taking away our freedoms.” “The masks are uncomfortable” Really? Aren’t we talking about life or death? Is lying in a casket freedom? Is a ventilator more comfortable than a mask?

Citizens are having house parties and other large gatherings, and people who are dying from the virus are in denial stating that “the virus is a hoax!”

They don’t care about the truth, or about science, they just want to have their way and live in their own reality.

Even countries in Europe are protesting against restrictions to curb the spread of the virus. This denial is world-wide.

This is rebellion—plain and simple!

Does it make sense to sacrifice life for financial stability? Can we spend money from the grave? But this is what happens when a nation turns away from God. He leaves us with our own dysfunctional, depraved minds that are totally irrational and illogical (Romans 1:28).

Nevertheless, people want to have their own way, in spite of the consequences. It happened with Biblical Israel, during Christ’s time on earth, and it is happening today. We are certainly walking (living) in the days of Noah.Living in the Days of Noah - Are we living in the last days of Noah?

This behavior: the refusal to follow instructions, to listen to reason, this total illogical reasoning, not to mention the blind ear to sound Biblical doctrine, is evidence of the last days we are living in. Jesus prophesied about it regarding His second coming in Matt 24:37-39

37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; 39 and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.  NIVLiving in the Days of Noah - The Flood came and took them all away

When will Christ return? No one knows but His return finds its equivalent in Noah’s day. Jesus will return when the world is living as it was living in Noah’s day: living sensual lives, eating, drinking, marrying, divorcing, and remarrying over and over and refusing to heed Noah’s message of repentance, righteousness, and coming judgment.

Notice the words up to the day Noah entered into the ark.” While Noah was building the ark, he preached the righteousness of God and the coming judgment. The people had the testimony of Noah’s life and his belief in God’s Word as a warning, a warning that man was responsible to live righteously and that judgment was coming. They saw Noah building the ark. But even though they observed the ark, they rejected Noah’s message and testimony. They went on living in worldliness, in their eating and drinking, and in pursuing their own lustful desires, and they did so right up until the very day that “Noah entered into the ark.”
Then suddenly, unexpectedly, their world was shattered.

They “knew nothing,” which means this: they did not expect the coming judgment. They did not believe the fact, the word, and the message. They were close-minded; they did not bother too much about listening and studying the matter. Therefore, they were willfully ignorant of the truth. They simply did not want to know the Word of God and they suffered the consequences, ” the flood came and took them all away.” We can only walk in our own reality for so long before the the actual reality rises to the surface.

When will Christ return? He will return just as He came in Noah’s day: at a shocking time. Just as they “knew not” that the end was coming, so He will return when the world knows not.

In verse 8, we see God’s grace: “but Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.” This is the first time grace or favor is mentioned in the Bible.

What does that mean? It means that Noah believed in God and His promises. As a result, God poured out His grace and favor upon Noah.

God had mercy upon Noah and chose Noah to be the individual to be saved through the coming judgment. Noah’s faith in the promise of Godhis faith in the coming Savior—saved him. Noah was saved “by grace through faith” in the coming Savior (Ephes. 2:8-9). Noah found grace because he believed God, believed God’s promise of salvation through the promised seed,
the coming Savior.

Noah chose not to live as the world was living, he chose to be righteous instead, and he chose the narrow way.

Any and every individual can be saved just as Noah was…by the grace of God through faith in the promised seed, the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ if they chose to. [cf. Eph 2:8-9]

Living in the Days of Noah - Jesus our Ark
JESUS IS OUR ARK!! He will save us from the flood of judgement to come. HALLELUJAH!

Are we living in the days of Noah? We certainly are, but we have the same choice that Noah had: to trust and believe God, to accept His Son as Lord and Savior, and live righteously. Jesus is our ark!!

The Bottom line: He will return when people are living just as they were living in the days of Noah: As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.” His coming is certain and assured. That is the real reality!

So let us be obedient and ready!

I encourage you to leave any comments, questions, or concerns below. You will receive a response.

Blessings!!