New Bible studies and devotionals sent to your email. The first one includes a free gift!
Have you ever heard an atheist singing a hymn? There is just something not quite right about it to me. Songs of worship may be just melody and rhyme to the world but to a Christian who has been changed it becomes their hearts cry. So when I hear someone who isn’t changed singing the songs that I sing to God for just the fun of it I feel like my worship is being mocked.
I don’t know if anyone else feels that way. Maybe for you it is hearing the name Jesus used as a curse word. Whatever it is that turns your stomach it is like that for God too. When the holy is mocked and used for the pleasure of ungodly people the stomach of God as well as Christians turns as though we drank sour milk.
2 Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein.3 Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them.4 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.
Here is an example of someone using the things intended for the pure worship of God for their own pleasure. If you know the story of what happened you know that God cast judgment on Belshazzar. He was removed from his kingdom and killed that very night.
God has His way of dealing with people who make a mockery of what is holy.
It may be easy to look at the atheist or the pagan king using and speaking about the things of God and see the cruel irony and mockery. But the sad truth is that there is something much worse. The Bible says that God will vomit because of how sick He is with something.
15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 19As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Even the church services and the prayers of people who call themselves Christians have become a burden to God. When we are not sold out to God then we are called lukewarm. What that means is that we know about Him and offer prayers or service but at the same time we don’t stop to consider that we need to repent and put away our evil before we come before Him to offer praise and worship.
11 To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. 12When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? 13Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. 14Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them. 15And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. 16Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
Yes, Jesus is our sacrifice…but obedience is better than sacrifice! God is the same God now that He was then! He did not accept sacrifice from those who did not repent! Yes we are going to fall, but remember that we are learning to walk. How many times you fall isn’t important…but when you lay there as though it doesn’t even matter that you are on the ground God is not pleased with you because you are using the blood of Jesus in a way He never intended…as a tool to do wicked and get away with it!
This is what lukewarm is. It is just hot enough to the idea of being a follower of God to do things for Him and for others in His name. It is cold enough to the idea of following Him that we would continue to follow the world at the same time.
Listen to what it sounds like when God throws someone up:
21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
These were people that did a lot in the name of Jesus. But for some reason God said they were workers of iniquity. Why do you think that is?
30 He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.31 Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.32 And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come.33 Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit.34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.
He said that we need to be a good tree with good fruit…or a rotten tree with bad fruit. He wondered at how we could speak good things while being evil in our hearts. Going a little further in this chapter we see Jesus speak of an unclean spirit who leaves a house (a man). The spirit returns to the house and finds it swept and cleaned…but empty. So he takes more unclean spirits into the man.
If we are rotten in our hearts then we can clean the house all we want. We can look holy, say holy things, and even do great works for God. But unless Jesus is in the house…our end will be worse than if we had never known about God or tried to clean.
Sometimes people imitate others trying to have that special something that they see in them. They look at a happy person and think “If I could only be that happy! I know what I can do! I can get the same house, car, clothes, and money that they have! I can even act like they do and say what they would say! Then I will be happy.”
But they don’t understand that none of that makes them who they are. It is something on the inside…it is a happy spirit living in them. Everything else is an effect of that. You can make a house look like someone is there…but even if the lights are on there may be no one home. Just because you turn the lights on it doesn’t mean anything…someone has to be home!
It has to be Jesus living on the inside. If you don’t know for sure if His spirit lives in you then honestly He probably isn’t.
15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
2 Corinthians 13:5
5 Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
When you really get saved and the Spirit of God (Jesus) comes into your heart you will have no doubt if you are saved or not. The Spirit will let you know that you know God is now your Father! If you don’t know for sure then it is time to examine yourself and see if you are in the faith.
1 Corinthians 11:31-32
31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
Have you ever heard a sermon and felt conviction? Can I tell you something you don’t hear said a lot? A good sermon should not always make you feel convicted! Conviction is for the guilty. If we follow God we should not be guilty and hearing the law should not bring conviction but rather joy!
So if hearing the word of God is always convicting and makes you feel guilty then you have something in your life that you need to do something about. It is best to judge yourself rather than be judged by God in the end with the rest of the world.
There are two things you need to know in order to examine yourself. First you need to know what a rotten tree looks like. Then you also need to know what a good tree looks like. Jesus said you can know someone by their fruits.
19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
The rotten fruit of a person without the Spirit of God brings these kinds of fruits listed in the verses above. It may be true that even a good tree can have one or two bad apples…but the tree isn’t in the habit of producing that.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. 24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
The good fruits of a real Christian are these. If our lives do not show these fruits then we have need to worry. We may not be in the faith. Good fruit is the result of the life’s blood in the tree. The sap will be strong and help the tree grow. But if the sap is dry and the tree is empty then the fruit will rot. The Spirit of Christ is that sap in us.
Those of us who name the name of Christ and produce no fruit will not be accepted by God. God will vomit that kind of person out of His body and right into Hell. Do you think He won’t pronounce harsh judgment on someone that doesn’t produce good fruit? Think about what happened to this tree:
Mark 11:13-14 and 20-21
13 And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. 14 And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it.
20 And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. 21 And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away.
July 13, 2015 at 7:07 pm | | No comment