Saturday, March 23, 2013

I Have Decided To Say No To Evil

When someone is acting immature we often hear them being told to act their age. If we recognize this can be an issue emotionally and mentally why don't we recognize the same problem spiritually? Why are we afraid to tell people to "grow up" spiritually? Apostle Paul never seemed to have this problem as he often told people to "grow up".

If we were to do this the best place to start is in the mirror. Following Jesus requires some mature decision making. It means setting aside whatever we want, to follow the instructions of the King. Maybe that's the first problem. Maybe we see him too much as a friend and forget he is King. His commands are not suggestions. He doesn't tell us to follow his commands if we feel like it. He tells us to obey because we love him. Love does not demand less of us but more. There is no stronger motivator in life than love. Some would say fear is the strongest motivator but I think that's because they have not experienced real love.

Here's the thing: You were called to be holy, set apart, special, for God's use. I can't stress that last part enough: You are intended for God's use. God's holy instrument. His servant. His warrior. His man. His woman. His child. Paul explains it to Timothy:

In a large house some dishes are made of gold or silver, while others are made of wood or clay. Some of these are special, and others are not. (2 Timothy 2:20)

Some of you will understand this. There are dishes that you use every day and then there are the special occasion dishes. There is the flatware and then there is the silverware. If one of the daily use dishes gets broken you may be a little upset but that is nothing compared to how upset you would be if one of the good dishes was broken. You place special value on these for special events.

That’s also how it is with people. The ones who stop doing evil and make themselves pure will become special. Their lives will be holy and pleasing to their Master, and they will be able to do all kinds of good deeds. (v. 21)

Stop doing evil! Turn from it. Run from it! You know what tempts you and causes you to fall, so stay away from it. Some would say, "But only God can keep me from evil". Jesus has made it possible for you to make that decision. He has opened the door. He has sent us the Holy Spirit. But we have to make the decision. We have to turn from it. He has made it possible for us to have the strength to say "no" but we are the ones who have to say "no". So say it already.

We are not intended to be common. We are not intended to be dailyware. We are intended for God's holy purpose and we will step into that the moment we stop doing evil and make ourselves pure. We are made pure by the blood of the Lamb. We remain pure by daily walking in obedience to the Holy Spirit. It is as simple as that. Make the decision not just to accept the cross but to live in obedience to the King.

The Church is a family of believers, filled by the power of the Holy Spirit to do God's will on this earth. But we can't operate in that power if we are double-minded, prostituting ourselves, trying to hide the evil we do in the dark. That power can only flow freely when we walk away from everything that is not part of God and immerse ourselves in Jesus every moment of the day so we are always available to him whenever and wherever, however he wants to use us. We should desire to have the power to fulfill God's will daily. 

You know the things that you do, the things you decide to do that are not acceptable to God. Anything he says is not acceptable is evil. Make the decision right now to walk away from that thing. Repent, which means to go in the opposite direction. Don't just stop but cry out to God. Run to him. I mean run fast to him, with all your energy. He will forgive you and will allow you to step into his holiness, set aside exclusively for his use. Stop prostituting yourself to another and realize you uniquely belong to the King, our Lord Jesus Christ.

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