Monday, October 24, 2011

Take a Spiritual Bath!

Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, 
you double minded.  Be wretched and mourn and weep. 
Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. 
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.
James 4:8b-10

What an interesting passage!  We are told to "consider it all joy" when we face trials (James 1:2), to "rejoice in the Lord always" (Philippians 4:4),  "the joy of the Lord is your strength" (Nehemiah 8:10).  How in the world do we reconcile these verses with the ones above?

As we consider them, we must remember that we have been studying about those proud of heart who are covetous and quarrelsome, even to the point of murder in order to get what they want.  They are enamored with the things of the earth, in a state of spiritual adultery because, although they are part of the bride of Christ, they just can't seem to shake their affair with the world.  

Well!  In that case let's see what those people should do in order to correct the error of their ways.  Never mind; let's just include ourselves assuming that we just might sometimes fall into the same category. (Tongue in cheek!)

"Cleanse your hands, you sinners."  Have we dirtied our hands with the things of the world?  Worldly thinking, envy, covetousness, materialism, wrong choices...

"Purify your hearts, you double-minded."  How often do we sit on the fence between heaven and the world?  Do we allow the system that Satan has set up  on earth tempt our thinking or our actions, causing our hearts to sin?

"Be wretched and mourn and weep."  Just how much do we grieve over the thoughts and actions of our hearts that cause us to be spiritual adulterers?

"Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Be wretched and mourn and weep."  Do we laugh with the world or mourn over our sinfulness?  "There is a time to weep, and a time to laugh, a time to mourn, and a time to dance."  (Ecclesiastes 3:4)

So what are we doing when we do all this?  We are carrying out God's demands for us as believers if we want to experience life to the fullest.  He said to "Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you."

This is just another example of the world's way versus God's way.  Our joy comes from obedience, not from flirting with the devil and his perverted system that he has set up in order to trap us.

As we strive to be faithful to our groom,


Cranberry Morning

I think most of us are convinced that we're just not that bad. (until we see ourselves compared to God's perfect standard.) There's just nothing lovely about any of us. Praise God that He sees His redeemed through the righteousness of Christ. and that He changes lives.

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