SUBJECT - SETTLING FOR LESS THAN GOD'S BEST??!!!
The message for this month, and possibly next month or so, takes a look at a mostly widespread problem facing an overwhelming majority of those that name the name of Christ.
That problem, is one of the main reasons that many Christians never seem to be full of joy and peace of mind.
It is why many people that are not saved, see no reason to change their ungodly lifestyle for Christianity. There is no difference in how they cope with every problem that faces them, and the believer.
When things are going good, people will be full of joy, and, when things start going bad, which happens to every one at some point in time, they [the ungodly and most believers], fall apart.
The main reason for this is, these believers, don't know just exactly what God has in store for them, and how to obtain it.
You see, when you know that you have, for example, one million dollars in the bank, then, no matter how bad the economy gets, or you lose your job, and the prospects for getting another one right away, are slim, and your monthly liabilities [bills] are only $2000.00, you have very little to worry about.
Therefore, you can relax, and continue to enjoy life.
Compare that with someone in the same situation, that has no money in the bank, but yet has the same amount of bills $2000.00 a month. He/she is going to have a major problem with worrying as to how things will turn out.
The difference between the two, is one has the necessary backup [funds] to take care of their needs, while the other does not.
Now, let's say, in the example of the second person, an anonymous donor puts one million dollars in his/her bank account, but didn't tell them that it was in there. This person would still be worrying and fretting about how they were going to make ends meet, despite having all that money in their account.
Or, in another example, using this same individual, the bank calls him/her, and tells them that they have one million dollars in their account, but, the person doesn't believe it.
They still are going around worrying about how things are going to turn out!!,
Now, if you can grasp that, then you can grasp the idea that just like in all 3 of these examples, the same thing holds true for the relationship between God and man in that God has stored up for all of us blessings that, as the bible puts it, are even far greater than we can imagine[Eph. 3:20].
Now, when it comes to the first example I presented of the one that, because he knew what he had stored up, when things go bad, had nothing to worry about, so too, the believer that is fully aware of who it is that they serve, and what He has promised to those that walk uprightly before Him, they[the believer], can endure any hardship that comes their way, and still remain full of joy.
And, what does joy do for you??? It gives you the strength to stand in the midst of any storm that comes your way [Neh. 8:10].
A person in this position, is one who, can never be defeated in any situation, and who will be a success in whatever they endeavor to do because they, once again, know who they serve, and what He has in store for them.
How does this person know what God has in store for him?? By being obedient to His Word which says, 2Tim 2:15 STUDY TO SHEW THYSELF APPROVED UNTO GOD, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, RIGHTLY DIVIDING THE WORD OF TRUTH.
If you will notice the first part of this scripture that is in all caps, it directs us to study His Word, the bible, so that we can show ourselves obedient to Him [God], so that we can be in a position to receive the blessings He has in store for us.
Part of this studying, includes in depth research in to His Word, so that we can get the correct direction that God wants us to follow. That is what the second part of the above scripture that is in all caps, is telling us.
You see, the bible is the Word of God, and it tells us every thing we need to understand all the major factors that go in to our lives, and how to deal with them so that we can have the best that He has to offer.
Naturally, if His Word is supposed to be rightly divided, then it stands to reason that it can be wrongly divided.
And it is this part that is the direct cause of people either not knowing what God has in store for them, or not believing it at all.
When most people read the bible, they read it like it is something that gives the reader their choice of over thousands of ways to do things to get what you want from God.
People will read one scripture and build their entire life's philosophy on it.
The problem is, one scripture alone, does not necessarily give the reader a clear picture of where God wants to take us.
My view of the correct way to read the bible is, if you read a scripture, or scriptures that give you a certain point of view, then you read another, in some other part of the bible, that gives you what seems like a contradiction to the first scripture[s], then your interpretation of the first scripture[s] is wrong, and the correct message lies somewhere in between.
God never contradicts Himself.
If you keep this in mind then, it will help you understand when you see scriptures that appear to contradict each other.
It takes work, thus the use of the word 'workman', in the scripture above,
to find the correct message that God wants us to receive.
If, a person is, for lack of a better word, lazy, in their walk with Christ, then they will be walking a path that will lead to their not being able to achieve what God wants them to, and thus will be continuously falling short, and missing out on life's best, and will begin to believe and accept that what they have is all that they are destined to have.
They therefore, are settling for less, far less than God's best for their lives.
If you will look at the subject scriptures, you will see a promise from God, no less, of what is in store for any nation/individual that will be totally obedient to Him in every aspect of their lives?
The scripture goes on to say that these blessings will literally run over the nation/individual.
How many of you would like God's Blessings to run you down??
I know I would.
Now, just to get acquainted with the blessings that He has in store for those that are obedient to Him, let's take a condensed view of the next few verses going down to verse 14.
Deu 28:3 Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field.
You will be blessed wherever you live, and wherever you work.
Deu 28:4 Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep.
Your children will be blessed. Whatever you produce, or invest in will be blessed. Your wealth will be multiplied abundantly.
Deu 28:5 Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store.
Your food supply will never run out. Your bank account will never run empty, meaning you will never go hungry, or be in debt.
Deu 28:6 Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.
This means that when you enter in to any business venture, or even in to a situation, as well as a person's house, and/or leave them, you will be blessed.
Deu 28:7 The LORD shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways.
Those that rise up against you, and try to do you harm, will be defeated, and run in terror from you.
Deu 28:8 The LORD shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
Notice, God will command the blessings to come on you so that whatever you set your mind to do, wherever you are, He will bless.
Deu 28:9 The LORD shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, and walk in his ways.
Can it be made any clearer?? These blessings, again, are contingent on your obedience to His direction. These are the prerequisites.
Deu 28:10 And all people of the earth shall see that thou art called by the name of the LORD; and they shall be afraid of thee.
Those that would be your enemies will be so afraid of you that they will keep clear of you, and even want to be your friend.
Deu 28:11 And the LORD shall make thee plenteous in goods, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers to give thee.
You will have many healthy children, and be very prosperous.
Deu 28:12 The LORD shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto thy land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou shalt not borrow.
Quite simply put, if you need it, God will provide it.
Deu 28:13 And the LORD shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the LORD thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them:
Deu 28:14 And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.
Every thing you do, will cause people to look up to you for advice. You will be the one that everyone will want to be like. But, only if you are obedient to Him. Not straying to the left or the right, or following the directions of any one else but Him.
This is a very condensed look at the blessings God has in store for the believer. As I mentioned earlier, they go far beyond what we can even ask or think.
So, with that being the outline, let me ask you this?? Are you settling for less than what God has for you??
Well, let's look at the situations many believers find themselves in.
We know that the unbelievers are essentially in the position they are in because of their total ignorance as to what God wants to bless them with.
They are quite comfortable in the way their lives are going, and have accepted their station in life, as being something that they are in control of, and as such, they need no one telling them how to live their lives because life is what you make it.
If you are well off, then that was what you were predestined to be, and if you are poor and destitute, then that is what you were predestined to be. The only way to achieve a better life, is by some ungodly means like stealing, or conning someone rich person, or a gullible person out of their money.
Have you ever wondered why it is that there is such a dislike for rich people by those that hardly have enough to take care of themselves?? If you will look at our political environment, the 2 main parties are seen as the party of the rich [GOP], and the party of the average and poor [Democrats].
In campaign after campaign, candidates in the Democratic party, will usually paint the GOP as the party of those people, who, by some underhanded means, have attained their wealth.
Why do they think like this??
It is because they have settled for what can best be described as a completely blind view of what circumstances help to bring about the type of prosperity that most of the wealthy enjoy.
In most of these cases, it is part of God's blessing plan.
More, next month!!!