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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

why is it?

Why is it do you think, that people get all excited talking about the ‘rapture’ and the ‘millennium’ and prophecy, but no one has any enthusiasm for the more meat and potatoes teachings about living faithfully and righteously before the Lord.

I see enthusiastic discussions about what is going to happen in the end time when Jesus “raptures” His people away and rings down terrible tribulation and wars and awful things on those remaining (and those who are left here will still have a chance to get right with God during those terrible times…) And people seem to gloat because they think that, of course, they are not going to be here for those things, but THEN, they say, He is coming back and everyone gets all enthused about the wonderful times He will usher in for a thousand years. Hmmm not much is said about after that though. Wonder what happens then.

But just mention living free from sin and destroying the fruits of unrighteousness and there isn’t a peep of enthusiasm. They get a little bit more energetic when we speak about the fruits of the spirit because those are all positive things that people think they display. Everybody likes to see themselves as being loving, kind, patient, peaceable, longsuffering, and gentle. They like to see themselves as full of goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. And if those things aren’t within them they would rather not look too closely inside themselves.

But they don’t like to see their real selves when there is hiding within them: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. (Galatians 5; 19-23 NIV) That is why it is easier to think about the wonderful things that will be happening to the Christians in the rapture and the awful things that will come after it for those sinners (of which they are certainly not one!)

But the Word tells us to lay ourselves open to God and ask Him to search and see if there is any unrighteousness in us. (Psalms 139:23-24) We have to leave this searching up to the Lord for Jeremiah tells us the heart is deceitful and desperately wicked; who can know it? (Jer. 17: 9-10) When we open ourselves to God’s searchlight it will seek out and expose every wicked thing within us. It will give us grace and power to root out that sin within us. Then comes the victory that makes the true child of God rejoice—the sure knowledge that they are walking in righteousness with victory over sin and living a life set aside and sanctified for the Lord’s use—Those concepts not only leave them silent, but almost angry.

When we mention those things, possible only by the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives granted when we sell out fully to God, when we mention those things we are accused of self righteousness and hypocrisy. When we are told by Paul to present our bodies, a living sacrifice to God, wholly acceptable which is our reasonable service, people don’t want to hear it. But talk about living and reigning with Christ for a thousand years --whoo, buddy!-- Let’s jump up and down and shout.

Praise the Lord. We don’t have to wait till sometime in the future to live and reign with Christ we can do it now! Amen!

Do you triumph, O my brother,
Over all this world of sin?
In each storm of tribulation,
Does your Jesus reign within?

o Refrain:
I am reigning, sweetly reigning,
Far above this world of strife;
In my blessed, loving Savior,
I am reigning in this life.

One we hail as King immortal,
He did earth and hell subdue;
And bequeathing us His glory,
We are kings anointed, too.

Shall we then by sin be humbled?
Must we yield to any foe?
No, by heaven’s gift we’re reigning
Over all this world below.

Oh, what grace and high promotion,
That in Jesus I should be
Raised from sin to royal honor,
Even reigning, Lord, with Thee.

All this life is blissful sunshine,
Earth is subject at our feet;
Heaven pours its richest blessings
Round our throne of love complete.

Then we’ll sing and shout the story,
Of the wondrous blood divine;
Full salvation, glory, glory!
I am reigning all the time.

o Refrain:
I am reigning, sweetly reigning,
Far above this world of strife;
In my blessed, loving Savior,
I am reigning in this life.
What wonderful Joy !

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