VOTD: 2 Peter 2.9

“So you see, the Lord knows how to rescue godly people from their trials, even while keeping the wicked under punishment until the day of final judgment.”

2 Peter 2.9 NLT

This verse is the conclusion to a brief history of God’s rescue of the godly. Start at verse 1.

What trials do you face in the midst of a carnal and rebellious world?

#salvation, #trials, #votd, #world

A world hostile to God

“However, men obstinately refuse to change their lives, even before the most eloquent warnings (20-21). This is the world in which we live: a world hostile to God even in its core, a world that prefers to make for itself its own ‘idols’ and establish its own models of behavior.” Continue reading

#gospel, #mission, #world

FBI doesn’t know crime when it sees it

I wrote briefly about FBI Director Comey’s statement in which he declined to recommend criminal prosecution of Hillary Clinton over the private email server.

My main interest is about how Christians react to this announcement, now that the U.S. is no longer a country of laws. (In such a country, everyone is equally subject to the law of the land, regardless of their position. That is not now true of the U.S.) I gave three quick points on how Christians ought to react.

How do you as a Christian regard this decision? Does it portend the breakdown of justice in the U.S.? Or is it a mere blip on the greater scene? And how do you see the Christian’s role at this moment?

#USA #politics #world

Influence of the world

A gospel preacher posted the following to a discussion group. We’ve left off names.

Each November, our congregation puts up a “thankful tree” on a wall. Over the course of several weeks members are invited to write on a paper leaf something or someone they are thankful for. They don’t have to sign their leaves.

On the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, we have a devotional rather than regularly scheduled Bible classes.

We sing various hymns and chorus of praise and thanksgiving. We pray. We have a congregational reading of Psalm 107 interspersed between the songs. And we have our elders read from the leaves at four different points in the devotional.

This year, one leaf I did not have read aloud made the following comment: Continue reading

#focusfschallenge, #influence, #thanksgiving, #world

This world is perfect

Like Job, we lament constantly that this world is full of evil, and it is. We wonder if evil is not increasing, and it may well be. We ourselves feel the effects of sin and injustice, perhaps more than others.

It seems then a paradox to affirm that this world, as we encounter it, is perfect. Continue reading

#existence, #world

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(#199) The Proverbs of Solomon 29:27-Sticks and Stones and Intimidation

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 29:27: “An unjust man is an abomination to the righteous, And he who is upright in the way is an abomination to the wicked.”

There has always been bitter antagonism between those who practice evil and those who practice good. The explanation for the first murder in the world (Genesis 4:1-15) is clearly given in the New Testament: “By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks” (Hebrews 11:4); “In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother. For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous. Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you” (1 John 3:10-13).

Which is exactly why it is useless and wrong for those who follow God’s Way (the righteous) to seek the approval and acclaim from the worldly. Ungodly teachers refuse to let righteous students get good grades if they have written truthfully about the Bible, Jesus Christ, or moral goodness! Ungodly entertainers ridicule the righteous who speak out from their honest, godly convictions! Ungodly parents punish and discourage their righteous children from Bible classes or studying the Word of God! Ungodly propagandists who use overwhelming headlines to “beat back” any and every attempt of the righteous to uphold and defend the existence of God! Ungodly Evolutionists and Global Warming fanatics who falsely label as “unscientific” any and all who use scientific facts to debunk and discredit those attacks on Bible faith! Ungodly accrediting boards set materialistic standards which, when “Christian Schools” accept and meet those standards, have made “Christian schools” nothing more than another worldly school!

Jesus offered His reward to the righteous: “Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets” (Luke 6:22-23).

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

 

#antagonism, #bible-study, #evil, #evolutionists, #global-warming, #practical-lessons, #proverbs, #ridicule, #righteous, #scientific, #teachers, #ungodly, #unscientific, #world

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Since God Created humans only God can provide…

Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

Proverbs 25:26: “A righteous man who falters before the wicked Is like a murky spring and a polluted well.”

No one but Jesus Christ has been perfect but the ungodly Jews hurled every accusation against Him they could concoct. “And He was teaching daily in the temple. But the chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people sought to destroy Him, and were unable to do anything; for all the people were very attentive to hear Him” (Luke 19:47-48); “Now the chief priests, the elders, and all the council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death, but found none. Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none” (Matthew 26:59-60); “And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He answered nothing. Then Pilate said to Him, ‘Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?’ But He answered him not one word, so that the governor marveled greatly” (Matthew 27:12-14).

Sinful people cannot wait to find “a righteous man” who sins, for then they may say, “Christians are hypocrites;” “I’m as good as anyone who goes to church;” “the Gospel of Christ hasn’t helped all others be good,” ad nauseum. And it is true as Solomon later said: “Dead flies putrefy the perfumer’s ointment, And cause it to give off a foul odor; So does a little folly to one respected for wisdom and honor” (Ecclesiastes 10:1). No one is justifying sin in a righteous man, “For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity” (Proverbs 24:16).

Sinners who point their finger at a Christian who “falters before the wicked” are: (1) hypocritical; arrogant; judgmental; unjust; and merciless, all of which are damned by the Word of God; (2) ignorant of the fact that they are “the wicked” and therefore damned by God; (3) expecting God to follow their standard of judgment (no sin can be condemned as long as a righteous person has sinned), instead of His standard of righteousness (John 12:48-50; Acts 17:30-31).

Knowing sinners seek to “justify themselves in the sight of men” (Luke 16:15), Christians must “Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time” (Colossians 4:5). But know this, no sinner’s sins will be excused by any Christian’s sin(s) because “those who are outside God judges” (1 Corinthians 5:13). If you are outside of Christ, you have no excuse and only one appeal. “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38). Sinners, are you too “chicken” to see if you can do any better?

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

#bible-study, #christian-living, #hypocritical, #judgmental, #proverbs, #sinners, #world