Today’s bible reading very much reminded me of the state of things in, not only America, but in our world today. Woe to those who call evil good and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are clever in their own eyes and clever in their own sight…………Who justify the wicked for a bribe and take away the rights of the ones who are in the right! Isaiah 5:20, 21, 23.
The continuing verses go on to speak of God’s wrath being poured out because of the people’s thinking and behaviors.
Imagine a very large dam like the Hoover Dam. This dam is a phenomenal concrete behemoth! It measures 1,244 feet in length, is 644 feet thick and 726 feet high. It’s said to hold back such a great volume of water that it has deformed the earths crust and it caused around 600 earthquakes in the 10 years after it was built. Wow!
I cannot begin to fathom what would happen if the strong materials of the walls of that dam became weakened or compromised and the extreme weight of the waters behind it eventually won out. The floodgates would be opened to a roaring fury of waters that would annihilate anything and everything in it’s path, leaving behind nothing but chaos, destruction and heartache.
Our nation, our world, is sitting below a humongous dam itself. A dam much larger and more threatening than the little ole Hoover Dam. We are precariously sitting below a dam in which the waters of God’s wrath are beating furiously upon the dam of His grace.
Sadly, our delusional, misguided society has begun to poke holes in and weaken the infrastructure of the dam of God’s grace through denying and even foolishly attempting to change God’s created order of male and female and the legalization of same sex marriage and abortion, just to name a few.
Do they really believe they can spit in the face of our perfect holy Creator by changing His familial foundation for society? ? Do they think they can try to strip believers of their right to live their lives and conduct their jobs according to God’s holy and true word and not be held accountable for their destructive and hateful attitudes and actions toward God and those who are His?
The great and mighty dam of God’s grace has been compromised. It’s been weakened. How long before the torrent of furious waters begin rushing out no one knows, except for God.
I do know that I’m so very glad to know that as a believer, when that dam does burst, I will still be the recipient of God’s unmerited grace and not His wrath, thanks to my dear sweet Jesus and His sacrifice made on my behalf.
Tragically, the same can’t be said for unbelievers. Instead of being children of God’s grace, they are children of God’s wrath. They need repentance. They need our heartfelt prayers. They need the good news of the gospel of Christ Jesus. They need us. As believers we are to be God’s mouths, hands and feet. That responsibility lies with us.
Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. Matthew 28:19,20
I thought I’d share this blog post to my own blog. It’s sad that in many ways the church has been more influenced by the world than the world has been influenced by the church.
Week 2, “Tearing Down Lies”
Sometimes, that which we consider harmless fantasy isn’t harmless or fantasy.
Around 10 years old, my parents decided to purchase our dream home in the country. The home rested on a hill surrounded by a white picket fence, and each of us kids had our own bedrooms for the first time. The biggest incentive, however, was we were finally going to get that dog and cat we’d asked for. It was idyllic!
However, soon after moving in, each of us began to notice frightening phenomenon that couldn’t be explained. We were just an ordinary Midwestern family from an ordinary local Baptist church. We’d never heard of nor experienced supernatural activity before. All we knew–it was frightening. My parents contacted church family. They came to the house and prayed through each room, acknowledging the authority given us in Christ. Immediately the frightening activity…
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As I sit in my bed stroking the soft blonde hair of my precious sleeping 7 year old laying next to me, I am overcome by my feelings of love for him that are welling up within me. “Thank you, Father, for blessing me with him”, I whisper softly. “Thank you God, for all of my children.”
At that moment I’m reminded of God’s love for me. My love for my little boy is so strong, yet, God’s love for me makes mine look like nothing. I know this, yet I still cannot comprehend it.
“Love. It’s a reflection of God. It IS God. God is love and He created us to love as well.
Love itself is proof that we were created by a higher power. Are we supposed to believe that love is some sort of by product of evolution? That the ability to love is just happenstance? How absurd!
I think about the atheist, who, like the Christian, feels love and I wonder how someone can feel the kind of love like one feels for their child and yet not believe in God’s existence. How can one not see the connection? Even if all the many ways in which God reveals His existence and His presence among us were removed, love alone would be proof positive of God’s existence.
As for the atheist, I’m reminded that sadly, it’s their choice not to believe. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them, 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 people are without excuse. Romans 1:18-20
Next time you feel the overwhelming sense of love flowing through your heart as you look at your precious child, multiply that by a million times and you still haven’t even begun to come close to God’s love for you!
The Christian ought to be like a big sponge that soaks up the refreshing, life giving waters of God’s word, revelation and wisdom, that at the appointed time can be squeezed out over those thirsty, lost and in need.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Have you ever wondered what it might be like if we could somehow “repay” Jesus for what he did for us by laying down His life for us?
The reality is that we can never repay Jesus for His ultimate sacrifice. Salvation through Christ Jesus is a wonderful gift, which freely and lavishly flows from God’s amazing grace. There is nothing we could ever do to earn His forgiveness, not now, not ever.
Think about it though. If someone, perhaps even a complete stranger were to do something kind for us, like bail us out of some kind of trouble, perhaps even saving our very life, we would most certainly be forever grateful to that person. We would ask with the deepest of sincerity, “How can I repay you?” We would be searching in earnest for the best way that we knew how, to show our gratitude to that person for their unselfish act committed on our behalf.
Anything that anyone on this earth has done for us though, pales in comparison to what Jesus did for us. He committed the ultimate sacrifice, by freely and knowingly submitting Himself to a violent, brutal death on a cross in order to save us from our sins. I don’t know about you, but I know of no one else who would be willing to do all for me that Jesus has.
So what are we doing to “repay” Jesus or show our gratitude for His unselfish act of love and mercy carried out toward us? Do we “repay” Him with sin by living lives full of lies, envy, greed, idolatry, hate, gossip, anger, dissensions, selfish ambitions, or any of the other things mentioned in Galatians 5:19-21? Perhaps we “repay” Him by living our lives on our own terms as though He doesn’t even exist.
Or do we “repay” Him by loving Him, by loving others as ourselves, reaching out to help those in need around us? Are we living our lives in righteousness and continually walking with God? What about taking up our own cross and dying to ones self on a daily basis as Jesus did during His time on earth? Are we setting a good example as believers by exhibiting godly traits such as love, humility, self control, peace, joy and compassion as ambassadors of Christ should? Are we sharing the good news of the gospel to a lost and dying world?
Repayment? That will never happen. We can’t. Gratitude however, THAT is the key! Lets show Him our gratitude.
It’s imperative as believers to genuinely examine our hearts and minds as to how we have or haven’t been showing Christ our gratitude on a daily basis for his unselfish act of love and mercy on our behalf. For me, even as I write this, I am once again feeling pangs of conviction as I’m being reminded of my own short-comings in my daily walk with the Lord. After all, I would, as the saying goes, do cartwheels to thank and show a complete stranger my gratitude for their act of kindness that pales in comparison to the magnitude of what Christ did for me.
Unbelievers have chosen to reject and ignore the One who made the ultimate sacrifice. Unfortunately, sometimes we, as believers, are guilty in our own right. For we sometimes foolishly become complacent and take for granted that all too precious gift of Christ’s sacrifice.
So I ask, “What have you been doing to show your appreciation?”
Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him! Psalm 34:8
For me, as a Christian, God is love and God is all things good. From the precious baby just born to proud, weepy eyed parents, to the stars he so carefully placed in the sky for us to enjoy, even to the refreshing breeze that blows through your hair on a hot summer day.
Most importantly, God takes great care of those who have called upon Him in the name of His son, Jesus, and surrendered their lives to Him. For You O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you. Psalm 86:5
God’s grace is amazing in the life of the believer. Remind you of a song? We don’t deserve His love, His forgiveness, or His grace, yet, because of Jesus, He lavishly bestows it upon us. Because of that, as a Christian, I can confidently say the following about God.
When I am down, He lifts me up. But You, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory and the One who lifts my head. Psalm 3:3 ******* He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap. Psalm 113:7
When I am treated wrongly He is on my side. The Lord is on my side, I will not fear. What can man do to me? The Lord is on my side as my helper. I shall look in triumph on those who hate me. Psalm 118:6,7 ******* If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31b
When I need someone to talk to, He is always there to listen. He is my friend. When the righteous cry for help the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. Psalm 34:17 ***For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are open to their prayer. 1 Peter 3:12a
When I make a mistake or do wrong, He lovingly convicts me, and bestows mercy on me time and time again. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22,23
He is my rock, my refuge, my strength, my fortress, my salvation. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; my God my rock in whom I take refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2
He brings me unending peace and joy in a dark, troubled, chaotic world. And the peace of God which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 ******* You make know to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forever more. Psalm 16:11
Lastly, my God will never forsake me or let me down so I need not fear. Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6
That is the God that, as a believer, I am so blessed beyond measure to know!
Tragically, many people will never have the astounding privilege of knowing the God that I know. For there will be those who choose to reject the God of love, peace, joy, refuge and hope. For them, God will be a God of unspeakable wrath.
For, the same God who so amazingly created this earth, with all of it’s splendor for us to enjoy, will one day, in judgement, bring it to total destruction. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and it’s works will be burned up. 2 Peter 3:10
The same God who lifts me up will be the downfall for the proud and rebellious. “Behold, I am against you, O proud one,” declares the Lord of hosts. “For your day has come, the time when I will punish you. The proud one shall stumble and fall with no one to raise him up.” Jeremiah 50:31,32a
The very same God who is on my side will be against those who have refused Him and the same God who listens to me and is my friend, will not hear when those who refused to listen to Him try to futily explain their “case.” “As I called and they would not hear, so they called and I would not hear.” says the Lord of Hosts. Zechariah 7:13
The God who convicts me lovingly and bestows mercy upon me time and time again when I do wrong, will condemn harshly and show no mercy to those who refused to believe in Him or acknowledge Him even though they so desperately cry out for mercy. Therefore, I will act in wrath. My eye will nor spare nor will I have pity. And though they cry in my ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them. Ezekiel 8:18
The God who is my rock, refuge and fortress, will one day be the reason why people cry out for the rocks to fall on them in order to find refuge from His wrath, but they will find no refuge. Calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come and who can stand?” Revelation 6:16,17
Finally, the God who is my peace and joy, will be the God of sorrow, distress and eternal damnation for those not written in the book of life. In flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 2 Thessalonians 1:8 ******* Anyone whose name was not found in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:15
Before it’s too late, ask yourself, “Which God do I want to know?”