Archive for the ‘Fellowship’ Category


Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 20:26 A wise king winnows out the wicked; he drives the threshing wheel over them.

Great rulers crush criminals. A powerful king that will not tolerate civil opposition is a beautiful thing (Pr 30:31). Solomon and his father David were both wise and successful kings. Here Solomon gives inspired and learned political advice to kings and others in authority. Wise rulers will fight and destroy wicked persons under their authority.

The origin and purpose of civil government are not mysteries. The LORD God ordained rulers over nations and other political principalities to punish evildoers (Rom 13:1-4; I Pet 2:13-14). Resisting or resenting this authority is to resist and resent God Himself. Civil government has the right to capital punishment in enforcing its laws, and God sends these rulers as His ministers to execute revenge upon criminals that break the law.

Bringing the wheel over the wicked is to crush them. Grain was crushed in King Solomon’s day by turning or rolling a heavy wheel over it (Is 28:27-28; Judges 16:21). This separated the wheat from the husk. Wise government will take heavy measures to crush wicked men who have set themselves against the state, law, and other citizens.

The wisdom here teaches that civil government should be strict and severe. There can be no tolerance or compromise with criminals. Compromise and delay cause an increase in crime by hardening the hearts of criminals. You can see this in current issues of hung juries, appeals, delay tactics, further appeals, and stays of execution (Eccl 8:11).

There are several references to kings in this chapter of Proverbs. Solomon was providing wisdom for his son Rehoboam, the next king of Israel, and for rulers in general. He described the positive virtue of great fear (Pr 20:2), their holy execution of judgment (Pr 20:8), and their balance of mercy and truth in protecting the innocent (Pr 20:28).

Wise rulers seek quiet and peaceable lives for their productive citizens. These people can only have such lives, if the wicked are scattered and crushed. Leaders must take the justice part of their office seriously and do all they can to destroy criminals and crime. They must be free of sentimentality to aid, abet, respect, or pardon criminals.

There is not room for one wicked person, one criminal, in a just and good nation. Death row in the U.S. should be emptied of 3700 monsters by way of public stoning on pay-per-view television, with the proceeds going to the victims’ families. One cent spent on their upkeep in the penal system is a waste and encourages crime. Stones are cheap. David, a king after God’s own heart, had zero tolerance for criminals (II Sam 4:1-12; Ps 101:4-8).

Those who resist civil government or speak evil or lightly of those in authority should be dealt with most severely. God Himself opened up the earth to swallow men and their families alive for speaking against Moses (Num 16:1-34). The New Testament says they should be destroyed like rabid dogs, for they obviously do not understand the basic necessity or duties of authority (II Pet 2:10-12; Jude 1:8-10). There is no such thing as freedom of speech against authority in God’s wisdom (Ex 22:28; Ec 10:20; Job 34:18).

Let every man in a position of authority use strict and severe measures against the wicked in his realm of control. This applies to employers, fathers, husbands, and pastors, as well as kings and presidents, governors and sheriffs. Righteousness, peace, and quiet in any society depend on strong leaders ridding it of fools and their rebellion (Pr 19:25; 21:11).

Jesus Christ is the greatest of Kings, with the most wisdom. He is King of kings! When the Jews rejected God and their O.T. scriptures and crucified Him, He promised to return and miserably destroy those wicked men (Matt 21:41), tear down their temple, send His armies to burn up their city (Matt 22:7), and grind them to powder (Matt 21:44).

He promised to not leave one stone on another when He destroyed Jerusalem (Luke 19:44). He promised more distress and trouble on them than any nation had suffered before or since (Matt 24:21). He fulfilled all this and more in 70 AD by Roman armies under Titus Vespasian Augustus. But at the same time, to those who feared His name and loved Him, Jesus the Sun of Righteousness came with healing in His wings (Mal 4:2).

The Lord Jesus Christ is soon coming again with His mighty angels in flaming fire to wreck vengeance on all those that have rejected God and disobeyed the apostolic gospel (II Thess 1:7-9). But He will be admired that day by all those who believe the gospel and love His appearing, and He will bring eternal blessing and reward for them (II Thess 1:10; Titus 2:13). Reader, repent of your crimes against heaven and beg for His mercy!


Under Gods Command

1 Corinthians 9:24-25 (24) Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. (25) Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

 Whatever happened to self-discipline? Many books and speakers guide wandering souls to self-fulfillment, self-satisfaction, and self-awareness. Not many tackle self-discipline. Self-discipline requires an honest look at your strengths and weaknesses, with emphasis on the latter. It means building the will to say no when a powerful appetite inside you screams yes. For example, when you have self-discipline, you can

(1) say no to friends or situations that will lead you away from Christ

(2) say no to casual sex, saving intimacy for marriage, and

(3) say no to laziness in favor of “can do” and “will do.”

 Self-discipline is a long, steady course in learning attitudes that do not come naturally, and channeling natural appetites toward God’s purposes.

Lets Bring it Home: Where are your weak points? Pray with a friend for God’s help to redirect weakness into strength.


Under Gods Command
Forgiving Others
Matthew 6:14 – For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

Why? Those who are unwilling to forgive have not become one with Christ who was willing to forgive even those who crucified him Luke 23:34 – Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”And they divided up his clothes by casting lots. We are also denying our common ground as sinners in need of God’s forgiveness. God’s forgiveness of sin is not the direct result of our forgiving others, but it is based on our realizing what forgiveness means. We cannot live as Children of Light walking around with sin and hate towards others.

Ephesians 4:28-32 – He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands that he may have something to share with those in need. Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

We can grieve the Holy Spirit by the way we live. Paul warns us against unwholesome language, bitterness, improper use of anger, brawling, slander, and bad attitudes toward others. Instead of acting that way, we should be forgiving, just as God has forgiven us. Are you grieving or pleasing God with your attitudes and actions? Act in love toward your brothers and sisters in Christ, just as God acted in love by sending his Son to die for our sins.


UNDER GODS COMMAND
LIVING IN UNITY! WAKE UP CHURCHES! WE ARE THE ONES RUNNING PEOPLE AWAY FROM THE CHURCH

I went to Church Sunday and the preacher told a story about a young man who had to go through a beat down in order to be accepted in the gang he joined. Well, sometime later the Preacher got the young man to turn away from the gang and to turn to the Church, well he did this and joined the Church. Sometime later, the young man stop coming to Church and no one knew why, and could not contact him. The Preacher finally caught up with him, and asked him why he stop coming to Church. The young man said, that when he joined the church he thought he would experience the same family love from Christians that he did with his gang, but he didn’t. So he went back to where he felt part of a family.

A good friend reminded me of this Scripture.

Psalm 133:1-3 How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity! It is life precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down upon the collar of his robes. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore.

David stated that unity is pleasant and precious. Unfortunately, unity does not abound in the Church, as it should. People disagree and cause division over unimportant issues. Some delight in causing tension by discrediting others. Unity is important because

(1) it makes the church a positive example to the world and helps draw others to us;
(2) it helps us cooperate as a body of believers as God meant us to, giving us a foretaste of heaven;
(3) it renews and revitalizes ministry because there is less tension to sap our energy.


Under Gods Command 

Proverbs 5:3-10 – For the lips of an adulterous drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil, but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edge sword.  Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave.  She gives no thought to the way of life; her paths are crooked, but she knows it not. Now then, my sons listen to me; do not turn aside from what I say.  Keep to a path far from her; do not go near the door of her house, lest you give your best strength to others and your years to one who is cruel, lest strangers feast on your wealth and your toil enrich another man’s house.   

This “adulteress” is a prostitute.  Proverbs includes many warnings against illicit sex for several reasons.  First, a prostitute’s charm is used as an example of any temptation to do wrong or to leave the pursuit of wisdom.  Second, sexual immorality of any kind was and still is extremely dangerous.  It destroys family life.  It erodes a person’s ability to love.  It degrades human beings and turns them into objects.  It can lead to disease.  It can result in unwanted children. Third, sexual immorality is against God’s law.

Any person should be on guard against those who use flattery and smooth speech (lips that drip honey) that would lead him or her into sin.  The best advice is to take a detour and even avoid conversation with such people.


Under Gods Command

 Jeremiah 48:29 – We have heard of Moab’s pride-her overweening pride and conceit, her pride and arrogance and the haughtiness of her heart. 

 Moab was condemned for its pride.  God cannot tolerate pride because pride is taking personal credit for what God has done or looking down on others.  God does not condemn our taking satisfaction in what we do.  (Ecclesiastes 3:22), but he stand s against overestimates of our own importance.  Romans 12:3 teach us to have an honest estimate of ourselves.


Under Gods Command

 Proverbs 5:15-21 – Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well.  Should your springs overflow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares?  Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers, May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.  A loving doe, a graceful deer-may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love.  Why be captivated, my son, by an adulterous?  Why embrace the bosom of another man’s wife?  For a man’s ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all his paths. 

 In contrast to much of what we read, see, and hear today, this passage urges couples to look to each other for life-long satisfaction and companionship. Many temptations entice husbands and wives when marriage becomes dull in order to find excitement and pleasures elsewhere.  But God designed marriage and sanctified it, and only within this covenant relationship can we find real love and fulfillment.  Don’t let God’s best for you be wasted on the illusion of greener pastures somewhere else.  Instead, rejoice with your spouse as you give yourselves to God and to each other.