While many teachers focus directly on the Trinity, in these messages, my objective is to focus attention to the Bible, God’s Word. This is the tool with which God teaches us how to live a righteous life so that we can have an intimate relationship with Him. This was true for all the people during the writing of the Word as well as all generations. The passages I cite, for the most part, link to the King James Version. My posts link to “Bible Gateway“, where you can change the version for easier reading if you wish. With God’s unfailing Grace, we have this user manual with which to learn the experience of a righteous life. If you’ll notice, the welcome includes the phrase “A Mustard Seed”. I aspire to plant the seeds of the Word to expand Christ’s church across the Internet, and with God’s blessing, across the world.
Those who believe they have power over some or many others should take great care and heed the example of the Sanhedrin. In the days when Christ walked the earth, the Sanhedrin had great power over the Jews. They were of very high standing in the church and the common Jews bowed in their presence. When Jesus attempted to preach the new law to the church leaders, they rejected Him. They would not believe Him when He stated that He was the Messiah. In no way could this son of a common carpenter be the savior of the world.(Mark 6:3)
But Jesus tried again and again to preach the NEW covenant to them.(Matt 12:1-8) And Christ rebuked them for their disbelief in His ways.(Matt 15:1-14)(Matt 23:11-36) Then He preached a warning which is commonly overlooked. There are many, many passages from the Bible which are memorized and quoted over and over but I have never seen nor heard anyone address this particular passage: “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”(Matt 7:6) This is a warning which is a bit oblique and difficult to completely understand. I believe it was also a prophecy to Christ’s disciples, when they spread out from Jerusalem, to avoid preaching Christ to the Sanhedrin as they had already rejected and killed Him and so they would do the same to the disciples. As a prophecy, this was fulfilled in Antioch when Paul and Barnabas addressed both the Jews and the Gentiles there.(Acts 13:40-52)
As a final act of defiance and a proof of true power, Christ denied the Sanhedrin of their wish to be rid of Him. They may have killed Him, but He rose again and impacted the world with a magnitude of which they could have never imagined. The miracle of His resurrection is not only that which has saved all the Christians of the world and paid our sin debts, but the final denial, with God’s power and might, over the leaders of the Jewish church who rejected Him.
In recent years, I have come to notice a great increase in people having bad behavior toward others. I have witnessed unattended children rampaging through stores and parking lots. They could easily get hurt. I’ve seen adults running to beat me to the checkout line. I see so many DANGEROUS driving maneuvers nearly every time I drive out of my neighborhood. While trying to pick the best items of produce, I have been basically pushed out of the way. And possibly the most annoying, people talking loudly on cell phones in places like restaurants and doctor’s offices, where there is a big sign asking the patients to turn off their cell phones. There are more examples, but I will keep this post short so that is does not become a griping session.
In many cases, I just keep my mouth shut about this problem, but I DO want to inspire people to be more courteous in every aspect of their lives, from driving to the supermarket to helping your spouse clean the kitchen. Jesus told us “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets”. (Matt 7:12) This is not a request nor a suggestion. This is a command from the mouth of God!
So the next time you begin to do something even just a little bit aggresive or unlawful or just plain discourteous, ask yourself these questions: Would I want someone else to do this to me? Am I messing things up for anyone else by doing this? Would this affect me in a bad way if somebody else did this? If the answer is “yes”, then back away from your actions and quickly re-think your situation. Being courteous is godly and most anything else would go against the words of Christ. That would be sinful!
The Heavenly Father has instructed us with everything we need to do for a healthy Christian life that will endure our Spirit throughout our lifetime. I believe that Jesus perfectly outlines most of our user’s manual in Matthew chapters 5,6 and 7 in ways we can best understand them. There are metaphors in His words, but the Spirit will interperet the meaning as you read – I know it did for me.
He said we are “the salt of the earth”, meaning that we, as believers, are seasoned by God’s Word so that our flavor stands out amongst non-believers. (Matt 5:12) We are the “light of the world” and as such He instructs us: “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven”. (Matt 5:14-16) We are warned to not break the Laws of God. (Matt 5:19-20) We need to endeavor, throughout our lives, to stay within the boundaries of God’s laws and His Will and purpose for us. (Matt 5:17-20) And finally, we must be true to our actions in our hearts and live with peace and joy in our hearts as we strive to please our Lord. If our hearts are not pure in all matters we will suffer difficult consequences. (Matt 7:21-23) (Matt 5:27-30) (Matt 7:24-27)
To lead by example, we should live by the following commands and let yourself be seen but do not tell anyone your good deeds, just leave them done in the sight of others and in the sight of God. (Matt 6:1-4)
Other ways to live a godly life are outlined below:
2. Prayer – Jesus teaches us how to pray and to pray in private,
by ourselves because He knows the temptation of
grandstanding ( ie:using 12 big, fancy words when 4 will do). (Matt 6:5-13)
3. Charity – This falls under good deeds, but again, give to the
needy but do it in silence and in secrect. Do not boast about
the gifts you have given. (Matt 6:1-4) Do all your good deeds
joyfully. (Matt 6:16-18)
5. False prophets – How can we accurately decide who is a false
prophet? The answer is by staying in God’s Word. If we know
how God thinks, His messages to us and His will for our lives,
we will be able to identify the false prophets and avoid them. (Matt 7:15-20)
Finally, to summarize, read the Word and obey it with a joyful heart. You
cannot hide your heart from God. He created us and gave us the manual with the instructions as to what we need to do to get fixed when we are broken. I should think, then, He would know what is best for us in our lives. As believers, we have no excuses not to ruminate on His Word and incorporate It into our lives each and every day. (Matt 7:24-28) (Matt 5:48)