Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Raised with Christ

Most every Christian will say that when they were baptized into Christ, then they were “raised with Christ.” It is true that we are “raised with Christ” when we come out of the watery grave of baptism, having our sins washed away. However it is so sad that far too many do not live like they have been “raised WITH Christ.” Actions do speak much louder than words. The apostle Paul wrote, “If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them” (Colossians 3:1-7).  Christians who have truly been “raised WITH Christ” will demonstrate that fact in their day to day life knowing that they have died to sin, putting to death the carnal things of life. One who now walks with Christ is one who sets their mind on heavenly things and not earthly things. What a great sense of encouragement it would be to all Christians IF all Christians understood the importance of what it really means to be “raised WITH Christ.” All Christians need to “examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves.....” (2 Corinthians 13:5). Life on earth is very short, eternity is forever. Let’s make sure that we are living WITH Christ and FOR Christ each and every day. Our eternity with Christ depends on it! 


Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Doing It "My Way"

When it comes to things religious, it seems like many people today have the attitude of "I'm going to do it my way." This attitude is not new. This was the very attitude that separated the Israelites from their heavenly Father. "In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes" (Judges 21:25). "There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death" (Proverbs 14:12). "O Lord, I know the way of man is not in himself; It is not in man who walks to direct his own steps" (Jeremiah 10:23). Based on these passages of scripture, we can see that if we take the attitude of "I'm going to do it my way," it will ultimately result in spiritual death. There are two ways in which this can happen: 1) Out of ignorance. We can decide to remain ignorant by not studying the scriptures so that we can "do it my way." But God will not accept our ignorance. "Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent" (Acts 17:30). 2) Out of rebellion. We can know what the will of God is and simply rebel by saying "I'm going to do it my way anyhow." We rebel against God when we knowingly violate His inspired Word by the way we worship (instrumental music, Lord's Supper once a month, etc.), in our recreation (gambling, drinking, practicing worldly things), in our speech, in our dress, and whatever else we may do that violates the teaching of God. God will not accept our rebellion; we must do it His way: "not my will, by Yours be done." Our creator and righteous God also said, "Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin" (James 4:17), and "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven" (Matthew 7:21). May we all strive to ensure that we are practicing the things of God with a submissive attitude that says, "I'll do it God's way!"