FIRST-TRUMP#top..........Sound the alarm in Zion..... ...........................

.........

. A Priest sounds the alarm on a shofar

 

PRINTABLE VERSION


BEHAVING IGNORANTLY

31For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. (1Cor 11:)


Lately I've been having quite a struggle with myself in an attempt to control certain habits I've acquired over the years. Why, I wondered, am I having problems now when I hadn't had such problems dealing with my flesh in the past? I've always considered myself a rather strong-willed person, capable of doing just about anything I set my mind to do. And I feel I have a track record of having done just that. But if this is true, why can't I put into practice the tools I've used in the past to accomplish this task? I've also believed of myself that I have not been led by my feelings, but that I've had dominion over my natural body.

I'm finding this is not the case, that I have been living in an unreality. The question is: Why have I lacked reality in my life? And How did all this escape me in the past?


12And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; 13Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. (1Tim 1:)


I did it ignorantly.

The dictionary defines ignorant as: "Lacking knowledge of." That fits my situation ok, but looking deeper into the word ignorantly I see the word "ignore." The dictionary says of those who ignore: "To take no notice of, to disregard." And I find that to disregard means: "Lack of attention to something; to treat as if of no importance."

To pay no attention to, to treat as unimportant. Why did I have no trouble overcoming the habits I am now struggling with? Because I didn't think them important, therefore I didn't try to deal with them. In fact, as I look back on my life, I see I've been feeding these very characteristics I now want to be rid of. I've been causing them to grow and to be a large part of me that has now taken me over. All the while I refrained from dealing with the problems I was justifying them and explaining them away. In my mind the problems were not problems, so why deal with them?


14For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. 16If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. 17Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 18For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. 19For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. 20Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. 21I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. 22For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: 23But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 25I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin. (Rom 7:)


Paul, we see in these verses, was not immune to human impulses; and he was raised in the strictest of circumstances, that of a Pharisee. I essentially had no upbringing or discipline in my life other than what I formulated in my own mind. How much more likely are my problems to be deeper than those of Paul? In some areas mine would be deeper, or at least different. However, Paul grew up amongst and was trained by those who believed it was perfectly ok, and even required of them to destroy anyone who disagreed or taught a doctrine unlike the one they held. So in his mind, when he was committing the most atrocious of crimes, he fully believed he was doing God's service. What a shock it must have been to him when he learned the error of his ways and of his thinking. I'm afraid I can relate all too well to that shock, having experienced it myself in one form or another.

Paul said: "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin." This could be taken, and is by many, to mean the body and the soul are two separate aspects of a person, one having nothing to do with the other. It is believed by some, of which I tend to agree, that this is the concept taught by the Nicolaitanes, the doctrine Jesus said He hates (in Revelations). Since the body serves the law of the flesh, of sin, it can't be blamed for whatever it does as long as the person has been baptized and has received the Holy Spirit, which of course they assume to occur at the time of their baptism. It's the Spirit then that serves the Lord, and the flesh can do whatever it wants to do.

I don't read such a message in these verses at all. I see in them, and in my own experience, Paul saying he thanks God for Jesus having washed away his sins initially, having forgiven him, and given him a renewed life, a new beginning. But it's up to us to maintain that cleanliness. If we backslide, if we ignore where we've been and what we've been saved from, we will ultimately fall back into that corruption.


5Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; (Titus 3:)

20For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. (2Peter 2:)


We've been washed, but that doesn't mean we stay washed if we again play in our mud puddle.

I find this passage Peter has written to be a hard truth for me to accept. And what's worse, I know it to be true, and I can no longer claim ignorance. I just have to realize that Peter has described me all too well, and struggle to climb back out of the mire.

The problems I'm struggling with were taken from me (washed); not when I was baptized at the age of twelve; nor when I was called at the age of 36; but when the Holy Spirit baptized (confronted) me at the age of 66. Then is when I was made clean. But because of a lifetime of wallowing in mud, I eventually found myself back in my old habits, playing around the edge of the mud puddle.


14And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; 15I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 19As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 21To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. 22He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. (Rev 3:)


In my ignorance I could play in the mud and think it perfectly natural, healthy, and in the will of God. I never questioned what I was doing, I just did what came naturally. When the Holy Spirit began to convict me of what I was doing (and some of the things one might count as very minor such as a donut a day) I then opened my eyes and saw the errors of my ways, and of my thinking. But seeing a problem is not the same as dealing with said problem. I might take what I think to be medication for a health problem, thinking it will heal me. Then I find that instead of medicine I've taken a fast acting poison. My having become aware of my mistake might cause me to have knowledge, but that knowledge will not save me from the consequences of my error.


28But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. (1Cor 11:)

5Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? (2Cor 13:)

23For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. (James 1:)

29And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict ["Humble, browbeat, look down on"] your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you: (Lev 16:)


The world advises us to not overanalyze. It says we should just live our life and enjoy it to the fullest. They say that is what God created us for, to enjoy life. That is what the world tells us we should do. I find the Bible, written by the hand of God, tells us to do just the opposite. He tells us to examine ourself, to overcome every aspect of the flesh, of our desires, to rid ourself of every speck of sin and stain found in the world. I find that if a person doesn't overcome the flesh, those habits we've accepted and played with all our lives, and that we're told God approves of, we will not be with God in eternity.

Anything worth having is not easily come by. We quote this, and we believe it. But living by this philosophy is not as easy as quoting it.


15But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. 16No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light. 17For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad. 18Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have. (Luke 8:)

4Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? 5But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; 6Who will render to every man according to his deeds: (Rom 2:)

34O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. 35A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. 36But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. 37For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned. (Mat 12:)

27Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: 28But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. (Mat 5:)

7For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: (Prov 23:)


Have you ever had the experience of playing at life, paying no attention to the details or the possible consequences of your actions, living each day to its fullest: and then you get a letter from the IRS (tax collector) that states they want to examine your books? Can you remember the panic you suddenly felt realizing you now have to face the consequences of your carefree living?

There's coming a day when our every deed, our every word, even our every thought will be judged. Are you bothering to keep your body under subjection? How about your words? And how about your thoughts?

It is said that the unexamined life is not worth living. This will certainly be proven to be true when that life we've not examined is examined by our Lord, and the consequences for our choice of lifestyle then becomes eternal.


31For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. (1Cor 11:)

 

It seems to me that it would behoove us not to listen to the world (nor to our selves), when it says there's nothing wrong with what we're doing as long as it doesn't effect anyone else. I think it's time we listen to God and start scrubbing on these filthy garments we're wearing. How about you?


 

To CONTENTS

To NEWLY ADDED PAGE



Info

*To WELCOME PAGE

TO BIBLE CONTENTS

To SITE MAP

 

To .info HOME PAGE


Contact me by e-mail


top of page

www.FIRST-TRUMP.info

www.Tumbleweed.name __ Morality Stories - Bible Studies - Ethics__www.First-Trump.info