Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Claiming It In His Name

John 16:2

2They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God.

It's amazing the level of wisdom Jesus gave to the disciples that they really had no idea. Besides the miracles and teachings, Jesus gave direct warnings. He warned the disciples about the type of natural disasters they could expect but also the behaviors and actions of people. Jesus knew people like no other because He and the Father created man and Jesus was sent to die for the remissions of our sins. He told the disciples that people were going to kill and claim that it would be in service to God. That's deep! But here's the important point Jesus makes in verse 3, anyone that does so doesn't know God nor do they know Jesus.  For anyone in law enforcement that is reading this message, this your biggest clue that anyone who tells you they killed someone because it was God's will or He told them to do it, you know that it is not of God. No matter what the cause, God is not in favor of anyone taking someone else's life to further their cause. In fact, that's playing God and He is not to be mocked as is said in Galatians 6:7.

Monday, December 17, 2012

If It Seems Off, It's Because It Is

Jeremiah 40:16

16 But Gedaliah son of Ahikam said to Johanan son of Kareah, "Don't do such a thing! What you are saying about Ishmael is not true."

A whole army along with Johanan informed Gedaliah, who was appointed governor over the land by the king of Babylon, that Ishmael was sent to kill him. But Gedaliah didn't believe it. Even after the army had left, Johanan requested that he go and kill Ishmael personally to thwart the assassination attempt on Gedaliah. But as the Zondervan NIV Study Bible states, "Gedaliah's naive faith in Ishmael's integrity would cost him his life." Many see the warning signs that people are not who they say they are because their actions do not match up. But what about when one decides to ignore not only the warning signs given to them personally but to those warning signs given to those around them? An entire army knew something that Gedaliah refused to believe. Here's a thought. Not everyone is your friend that smiles in your face. Not everyone that wishes you well to your face is wishing you well behind your back. Some of those same people are hurling curses  upon your life and attempting to block blessings God has for you. Yes, there are those who may sit around you and follow you around all day but they aren't doing it to glean knowledge for their growth but rather to thwart what God has in store for you. Everyone that says they want to help you may not be helping you out of genuine love and concern but rather so you can be indebted to them and will do their bidding when called upon. Or like Ishmael, may actually seek your life. It can be the SWF Single White Female (movie of the woman who was so jealous she wanted to be her roommate) or simply one who seeks to snatch your blessings for their own gain rather than be content with what God has for them. How can you know for sure? It's called ask Jesus to make it plain and remove the scales from your eyes. But also that your receive the knowledge the Lord reveals to you. What good is it for the Lord to reveal if you aren't willing to receive it? When you ask Jesus for evidence, trust and believe that He will show you and know it doesn't take long. What you may find is the signs were under your nose the whole time. You were just sniffing the decoy clues vs the real ones. Do not be like Gedaliah. Trust that when something seems off, it's because it is off.