LOOKING TO PRAISE AND WORSHIP JESUS THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. 18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known].

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Hebrews 12:3-4

Hebrews 12:3-4 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.

The photo above shows that some people still want to honor a system built on sin and misery. A war was fought over 140 years ago to end the institution of slavery that this flag represents. The system of slavery was set up for the purpose of subjecting people to hard labor for economic benefit and many Christians remained silent. Why this flag, which represents seceding states’ attempt to preserve slavery, deserves being honored is a puzzle.

This passage in Hebrews points out that Christians have a duty to struggle against and oppose sin in themselves and in the world. There is not an option to not struggle against sin, as the passage does not say, “If you struggle” but rather “In your struggle.” Believers should always begin with themselves in mortifying sin. The war against personal sin is never completely won in this life and the battles are never ending. But, Christians are called to oppose and battle against their own sin and also against sinful practices and activities of the world (Eph. 5:11). God’s grace not only enables believers to come to saving faith, but it also enables them to grow and fight the good fight in opposition to sin. This passage is an exhortation and, indeed, an expectation that believers will participate in this Christian endeavor.

While we in America have not resisted to the point of shedding our own blood, we are called to remain true to Christ even if our physical safety becomes threatened. There is a growing trend of hostility in America from the atheistic secular left toward Christians and Christian beliefs. Even Christian doctrine in the form of speech is being labeled “hate speech” and there are political leaders currently advocating the silencing of what they consider hate speech. The so called politically correct standards and rules that have so much influence in our culture are being set and controlled by the secular left, the media and university liberals. I believe a more severe form of Christian persecution in America is knocking at our door as we continue to see good being called evil and evil being called good.

However, we are to be strengthened by considering Christ who endured much hostility, suffering, pain, and death in order that believers may have eternal life. With our eyes solidly focused on Jesus we will not grow weary or fainthearted as we draw from his reservoir of grace. His grace is sufficient and his plan for our lives will not fail even in times of hardship and persecution. All things work for our good of being conformed to the image of Christ.

It should also be noted that this call to spiritual warfare against sin will involve conflict with false prophets who claim Christ, but deny his deity and his gospel. In a like manner there will be false teachers who will pervert grace by turning it into a mere momentary profession with no call to repentance or discipleship (Jude 4).

Praise God that this passage gives us instruction in our duty to fight against sin in ourselves and in the world. Let us pray that we will recognize sin for what it is and not accommodate, tolerate, or honor it, as the photo above illustrates can happen. So, let us put on the whole armor of God and report for duty to our commanding officer and King, Jesus Christ.

6 Comments:

Blogger bluecollar said...

So very timely! Excellent exhortation!

March 21, 2007 6:21 AM

 
Blogger Craver Vii said...

”A war was fought over 140 years ago to end the institution of slavery …”

Some would say that the abolition of slaver was inevitable, but the attempted cessation was about states’ rights.

I have already been accused of hate speech, as I proclaim the good news of eternal life by grace through faith in Christ alone. How foolish is that?! People are walking corpses on their way to eternal torment, and when I bring the words of life, it is considered hate speech, because it is intolerant. Wouldn’t that be like a doctor condemning a certain type of medication because it is intolerant of the virus that the patient needs to be cured of?

You suggested that a more severe form of persecution is coming. I would be foolish to disagree. The signs are there. (Past history is a good indicator of future events.) They say that every nation that has fallen, has fallen from within. And for that, I pray that God equips the next generation (of the faithful) for the work at hand.

March 21, 2007 11:21 AM

 
Blogger Bill Scott, Sr. said...

Very well said....thank you.

It has been said that if you keep sin off the door step of your home then it wont get in the house.

Bill

March 21, 2007 12:02 PM

 
Blogger Marcian said...

AMEN!!!

March 21, 2007 12:05 PM

 
Blogger Even So... said...

Sin is like a camel...if you let its nose in the tent, believe me, it will soon be all the way in the tent...

March 21, 2007 12:57 PM

 
Blogger jazzycat said...

Thanks to all for the encouragement and comments.

March 21, 2007 4:33 PM

 

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