My way – or – God’s Way? – September 13th, 2018

My way? or God’s Way?

There is a way that seems right to a person, but its end is the way to death.

Proverbs 16:25 (CSB) 

I have to believe that we simply don’t think in these terms… Let’s talk about it!

Note from Kip…

How simple it is for us to defy God.

You read that correctly. It’s not an accusation. It is an observation. I observe it in my life, I observe it in the church, and I observe it in the lives of my brothers and sisters in Christ.  The only conclusion I can come to is that it’s simple to defy God.

For the time has come for judgment to begin with God’s household, and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who disobey the gospel of God?

And if a righteous person is saved with difficulty, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?

1 Peter 4:17-18 (CSB) 

You may have noted in that rather bold opening statement there was no mention about those outside of Grace. That’s because it’s time for the church and the believer to clean house.  It begins with us. It starts with us, who but by the unmerited favor of God, have been spared eternal separation from God.

If we read this passage in 1 Peter it is clear the reason why we are not seeing more outside of Grace accepting the gift of salvation, is that we are not pattering our behavior in accordance to what we see in the Word of God.

They take one look at the Christian and see a forgery. Yes, a fraud. A nicer name for it might be hypocrite, but I don’t believe that word is nearly as strong as the case against us Christians in our daily walk with the Lord.

Just Who Do We Think We Are?

Can any of you add one moment to his life-span by worrying? And why do you worry about clothes?

Observe how the wildflowers of the field grow: They don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these.

If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t he do much more for you — you of little faith?

Matthew 6:27-30 (CSB) 

You may be a little puzzled why I brought up this verse.

Case in point, who do we think we are? “Can any of you add one moment to his life-span“, really! No. Not with worry or any other action on our part. We can and should take care of our bodies, but even the most physically fit individual has no control of their days. That is the domain of God Himself and no one else.

We are but His servants. Question is, are we the good and faithful servant, or someone that chooses not to follow direction from our Lord and Master.

I’m not intending on brow beating anyone. I feel like we all are safe to lump together. I have that assurance because we all suffer from the same malady, the flesh.

I realize the purpose of Grace for the believer, it is to simply cover that which we can not. But just because Grace is there, doesn’t mean that we are free to behave in whatever manner that seems right to us. Remember…

There is a way that seems right to a person, but its end is the way to death.

Proverbs 16:25 (CSB)

While Grace is going to cover our inequity when we fall short of what God calls us to, if we do it on our terms, we are not truly ‘living’ the Christian Life. We’ve embraced a counterfeit version, and while we may see resurrection after our time here is over, we don’t really see ‘life’ in the manner that Jesus desires that we have life. And sadly, neither does the world around us.

For in him we live and move and have our being, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also his offspring.’ Since we are God’s offspring then, we shouldn’t think that the divine nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image fashioned by human art and imagination.

Acts 17:28-29 (CSB) 

Seriously, how much of that Devine Nature of God exists in us? Is it what is predominate in our lives? Is that what people around us see, when they see us? Do they see God’s Devine Nature at work in us? Or do they see something familiar to them, the world.

We really need to examine ourselves and consider if we are doing it our way, or God’s Way.

As you may have noted I’ve been capitalizing the word way after reference to God. God’s Way! The reason for this that it is a distinct path from that which would seem right to us, our way.  It is The Way.

Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:6 (CSB)

It is here that I think we, you and I, the church of Jesus Christ, loose our way. We loose our way because, we consistently justify our action as being the right way, when it is only ‘our way’.

We like having our own way after all. One of the first challenges for a young child is to understand that they can’t always have their own way. Appropriately  Jesus refers to us as children, and while it isn’t the entire reason he does, it may be a factor.  We behave as children, wanting our own way and not following The Way.

Changing Our Way

Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people, knowing that you will receive the reward of an inheritance from the Lord. You serve the Lord Christ.

Colossians 3:23-24 (CSB) 

It’s a matter of the heart.

I’m not saying that you truly don’t love Jesus, but if you, like me, see that we are acting on our selfishness, rather than His Holiness, then we need to understand the consequence of that love in our lives. How that love impacts the path we take.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own  understanding; in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (CSB)

We’ve been given the Holy Spirit as our guide. He has a lot of other roles as well but one that is an important one is to be our guidance. The believer that fails to acquiesce to the Holy Spirit’s guidance, is not much different than someone having signs along the road, maps in the glovebox, and a GPS unit sitting in the passenger side seat, disregards the sign, ignores the maps, and doesn’t bother to plug in the GPS and target their destination.

We Have Not Traveled This Road Before

We need that guidance to be successful in our journey. Even with the maps out, GPS barking out directions, and our eyes on the signage along our route, we will get off on the beaten path from time to time, but with the guidance system that God placed in us by giving us His Holy Spirit, we’ll find the quickest way back to His will for us.

And the world will see that guidance system affecting our journey as well.

So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

Colossians 3:1-4 (CSB) 

I don’t believe that most Christians are defying God because they make a conscious decision to defy Him and His commands for us. That is the very point, we are not conscious, we aren’t choosing to do anything in particular but allowing our nature to dictate our behavior, not relying on God’s Devine Nature.

By these he has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world because of evil desire.

For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.

For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Peter 1:4-8 (CSB)

My way? or God’s Way?

Blessings,
kip…


 

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