Friday, June 4, 2010
Where Do You Stand?
Before I was saved I tried to read the scriptures and they made no sense at all to me. As a result I have lived the bulk of my life in the shadow of pleasure. Since I was given a great voice by the LORD my God I thought that I would find fulfillment in in the music industry. I put my time in, twenty-five years, in and out of the juke joints of SE Texas. All in the name of pleasure I have seen men killed because they asked a lady to dance. I've seen men sent to the hospital because they wore the wrong shirt and the ladies like the look of it. I've also see men beaten to within inches of their lives because they admitted knowing somebody. All in the pursuit of pleasure.
When I first gave my life over to Christ I was just tired of the struggle and I was tired of running from God. He had called me twenty-three years, one month and about a week before. Every time I shunned Him and went off in the other direction He was there. It's a laborious task to attempt to escape God, no, it's a fool's task because you an;t escape God.
I have read and read through the scriptures for the past nineteen-plus years and every time I have God has shown me new meanings for the same texts. Don't get me wrong here, the older revelations were not wrong. It's just that there are many facets to the scriptures to understand. The scriptures are much like a diamond I once saw in a jeweler's shop. The stone had been cut to a round shape by the use of many small flat cuts and it was dome shaped by the same manor of many small cuts. It was the most beautiful stone I had ever seen. The stone and the lights were fixed in their positions and as I moved the gem constantly changed and refracted different colors.
The Word of God is like that to the saved man. As soon as I began to read the same scriptures that had made no sense to me at all as a Lost Man, the words just lept off the pages and into my mind and the meaning was crystal clear. I did not understand it then but I had bee indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God. It is by the leading of the Holy Spirit that these new facets, meanings, are revealed to me each time I reread the scriptures now. I was once told by a man that a certain pastor didn't have everything right yet but that he was a good pastor. My reply was a question, "Do you suppose that any of us have all of it right yet?” He smile an impish smile ad we went on with our conversation in a new direction. That is why we study to show ourselves approved. (2tim. 2:15)
On my read through this year I am almost finished wit the book of Jeremiah. I have, in the past, endured the book ad took no pleasure at all in the reading. This year, with the judgment of God falling all around the world I have been both astonished at the refusal of Judah and Israel to follow God and encouraged by God's never ending love and care for His, most cherished, creation, man. God has always sent a prophet before He judged His people and He always begs them to repent and not to force Him to pass judgment. In the last nineteen years I have heard so many men of God warning of the certain doom that is befalling us now and just like Jeremiah, nobody wants to give up a moments pleasure for an eternity of joy with God in Heaven.
I have watched people for the past sixty-five and a half years and in spite of all the technology, they are just as spiritually dumb as they ever were. Perhaps more so because of all the fast paced diversions. Folks don't have time for God except on Sunday and then most want to sit there on the couch or in their easy chair drinking a brew while the preacher tickles their ears.
Of the few that manage to et dressed, shaved and drive to a meeting house, most of them are Pew Whales. They come in after Sunday School and plop down on "their” pew and want to be fed. It never seems to occur to people that God actually wants to walk with them through every aspect of this life. It is these same folks that are amazed at the idea that God would judge America for the millions of babies that we have murdered. God told Jeremiah that He knew him before he was in his mother's womb and yet a very large segment of the people that meet together on Sunday morning believe that a child is not a person until they are given birth.
This condition of Spiritual Ignorance prevails in the meeting places of the Body of Christ because of the lack of study, laziness and willful disobedience to the will of God. These same conditions existed in the days of the prophets. Many offer the excuse, "But they didn't have the Bible!” They had the first five books, the Pentateuch and they had the scrolls of the prophets that had preceded them. And, as in the case of Jeremiah, they had the living Word of God being delivered to them as they required it. Just like us, they were, as we are, without excuse. 2 Chronicles 7:14 is the kicker though. God doesn't ask the lost man to pray. God said, "If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray.” We are a stiff necked, disobedient bunch of scoundrels.