Sunday, August 8, 2010

AN URGENT WORD FOR THOSE TEMPTED TODAY

This morning I am compelled to write about this subject.  No plan of my own, that is certain.  It is the Spirit, speaking urgently.


Are you leaving the simplicity of Christ for some other way concocted by man or spirit?  Are you today struggling with your reason, your emotions, your will, in such a great way as to sweat and strain at gnats while swallowing camels?  


Satan seeks to sift you like wheat, my brother or sister.  He seeks to pull you away from your simple, active, earnest faith in Christ alone, and to burden you with laws and ordinances, with religious intellectual arguments, with cunning schemes to create something for God.  Have in your understanding firmly that Christ is all, and you must only seek Him, not some man's ideas of religion.


"I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that 
I might present you as a pure virgin to Him.
But I am afraid that just as Eve was 
deceived by the serpent's cunning,
your minds may somehow be led astray
from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ."
2 Cor. 11:2,3

You are not alone.  Satan has sought to pull away God's Chosen People starting with our Lord Jesus Himself.  All Jesus' temptations were of this earth.  He was offered position, power, authority, wealth, food, whatever He wanted, if He would just bow to Satan and the evil one's complicated worldly plans and schemes.  But, like our Lord Jesus, we must resist, even to the shedding of our blood, if need be.  These temptations you face today are preparatory in nature.

You see, God is preparing a People who will be able to stand firm in Christ in the face of far darker and more difficult days.  For those days are coming, and you and I must trust actively in Christ alone, and His power, and His sufficiency, so that in our weakness He might be strong, and in our inability He might be our ability.  He is our Rock in a day of shaking.  He is our Fortress in a land of insurrection and violence.  He is our Strength in a day of spiritual weakness and vacillation.

Today, you may be tempted to take matters into your own hands. Today you may be tempted to chase after things in this world that would give you position, power, authority, wealth, food, or whatever it is you want.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Resist in the power and authority of Christ resident in you by the Holy Spirit.  Satan prowls around, and he looks and waits and watches for those who are straying from their secure position in Christ, for those who have forgotten or not learned that we must abide (live) in Christ, and that Christ wants to abide in us, and that we will only bear much fruit in that abiding, for apart from Jesus Christ you and I can do nothing at all that is of worth to God.

"Brothers, think of what you were when you were called.  
Not many of you were wise by human standards;
not many were influential, not many 
were of noble birth.
But God chose the foolish things of the world
to shame the wise;
God chose the weak things of the world
to shame the strong....
It is because of Him that you are in Christ Jesus,
who has become for us wisdom from God--
that is our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
Therefore, as it is written: 'Let him who boasts
boast in the Lord.'"
1 Cor. 1:26-31

Today, my brother or sister, together we will remember that our sufficiency is in Christ alone, not in ourselves.  We will take comfort in the fact that God chose us, not for our wisdom, or our influence, or our nobility.  But He chose us because He loves us and wants to fill us to overflowing with Christ, and produce the fruit of righteousness, holiness and redemption through us by the power of Christ.  Let's boast only of the Lord today!

In Christ, who alone is sufficient,
A. Brother

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