Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Seed of Progress

Acts 14:5
5There was a plot afoot among the Gentiles and Jews together, with their leaders, to mistreat them and stone them.

The apostles Paul and Barnabas were so effective in preaching the good news of Jesus Christ that both Jew and Gentile believed and desired to be saved. But the Jews that refused to believe decided they would bring about confusion and negativity to upset the group. The Lord gave Paul and Barnabas power through the Holy Spirit to perform miracles to confirm the Word of God that had been preached. But the Jews filled with anger plotted to harm Paul and Barnabas. God provided a warning so Paul and Barnabas could escape. Have you ever noticed when God is working the enemy is busy? Then enemy comes to kill, steal and destroy. He'll use anyone to do it. He used the closed minds and hearts of the Jews that didn't believe to steal the seed of  belief from those who received the Word of God. It's a classic case. As long as your belief is weak, then the enemy can continue to have his way with you. The minute you begin to grow in your faith, the enemy will attempt to bring you back to where you were. For the Jews and Gentiles that received the Word, they had a heart to receive. Those that didn't were upset. Have you ever noticed the more you grow in your faith, there are those that are not happy about it? Why? Because it means you are no longer partners in crime in the sins you engaged in together. You have surpassed the things you used to do and the ways you once thought. But in order to not feel left out, those that refuse to grow attempt to drag you back down with them. The old "crab in the barrel" syndrome. Your spiritual growth reminds them of where they still are and though they don't want to grow with you, they don't want you to progress. The feelings of inadequacy can run so deep that  they seek to harm you or make you look bad. For Paul and Barnabas, God had used them so mightily, their lives were in danger.  How many times has God told you that you must depart from the group you kept company with that were not growing in the direction God desires to take you? Did you continue to keep company with them or did you flea like the apostles? Keeping company with those God says you must separate from can only leave one result- you'll be back to ground zero and the seed of progress will be taken from you.

P.S. Please note in yesterday's message "Who Are You Consulting?" I meant Leviticus 20:27 not Leviticus 20:7. Remember to check out the Top 5 Countdown on www.churchbeatradio.com!

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