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(GOD'S WAYS, ARE NOT OUR WAYS)
SCRIPTURE - Isa 55:6 - 9 OCTOBER, 2005
Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts
SUBJECT - GOD'S WAYS, ARE NOT OUR WAYS
In the course of human events, nothing seems to be so misunderstood, as man's relationship with God, and His ways.
All of us, at one time or another, in trying to deal with certain situations in our lives, formulate solutions to these problems that come in to our lives, and feel perfectly justified in them. We tend to believe, that, if there is a God, then surely, He would approve of them, simply because He knows we don't have the ability to make perfect decisions, because, after all, we are only human.
Now, while this seems to be a legitimate point, it is full of holes, and it is these holes, that I want to address.
First, as the subject scriptures say, God's ways, and thoughts, are higher than ours, because, after all, He is God, Our Creator. And, as the bible says, 'can the creation, understand or correct the Creator??' The answer is, no.
Yet, whether we realize it, or not, whether we say it, or not, this is exactly what, we, are actually trying to do.
By justifying some of our actions, by saying that we have no way to come up with a perfect solution to our problems, because we can't measure up, to God.
Well, the above scripture, tells us, that the wicked, those of us, that are not saved, and, those of us, that are, need to take heed to the fact that, even though we are unable to come up with perfect solutions, on our own, we have Someone, to turn to, that is Perfect, that has the Perfect solutions, that we need. All we have to do, is ask.
The subject scripture says, we should 'seek the Lord, while He may be found.'
So, God is telling us to seek Him. For what?? So that He can provide us with whatever it is we are in need of. And what we need, is His direction and guidance, through our entire lives. We are so miserably, blind, poor helpless and naked, that without Him, we could do absolutely, nothing. Everything that is His creation, would stop functioning, if He removed His hand from it, or them. So we need Him, for the very basic things, like, life, itself. The air we breathe, the heart that pumps blood through our bodies, our being
in our right minds, the movement of our limbs and everything else,
functions because of Him.
Now, with this in mind, think about this. He knows full well what we are able to do, and what we aren't. So, He has given us the directions to keeping our lives, as uncomplicated as possible. And, when problems arise, He has the solutions that never fail, and at the same time, provide us with peace of mind.
Yet, there are those of us, that are in the majority, that tend to think that we know what is best for us, and at the same time, are telling Him, that He needs to get down off of His high horse, and come live in the 'real world.'
You see, God, has us here, to have fellowship with Him, and to, assist us to be more like Him. That's right, He wants us to be, like Him. It is sort of like a parent, child relationship. When you think about it, that is the basic foundation of the family. And in that light, you can see what I am talking about.
Well, there is a problem with the way that those, that don't really know God, think about this relationship. They want to turn the whole thing around, and make Him, to be like them. Rather than moving up, to His level, like the child growing up with the characteristics of the parents, they have the notion that the parent should come down to the level of the child.
Well, let's look at what happens when a parent, comes down to the level of the child.
While this may seem to be ideal, not to intimidate the child, and appear to be a person that is using, 'fear' to control the child, the parent compromises with the child, making him/her feel like they are buddies.
Well, when you look at the relationship of buddies, you will usually find one thing that they all have in common. And that one thing is compromise.
Compromise usually means, that neither has any set rules, that apply to the other. No one is above the other. They watch each other's back. No matter what the problem, they stick together. If one goes down, the other goes down with them.
We have parents, that so, stand by their children, that the child grows up, thinking they can do anything, and get away with it.
Then, they get out here in the 'real world', cause trouble, and get
put in jail, injured, or get killed, and the parent, is left, to realize the mistake they made, by not setting guidelines, and disciplining their child, while they were young. The bible says, (Prv 22:6) Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Prv 19:18) Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying. (Prv 23:13 - 14) Withhold not correction from the child: for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.
All of the above scriptures, relay the message that the parent, should do certain things, to instill in the child, the things that are necessary for the proper guidance and instruction in proper adult behavior.
Well, if you can see how God says parents should raise their children, then you should be able to see, that He, being the author of these guidelines, and more wiser than us, knows what He needs to do, in order for us, to grow up, to be like Him.
The bible says, (2Tim 3:16) All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:,
meaning the bible is His instruction to us, set with guidelines and if necessary, the discipline, and correction, needed to get us to be like Him.
But, here come those that don't want to see it like that. They want to believe that He, is not a God that would inflict any thing on us, that would cause us pain, or discomfort. They don't want to see the error of their ways, or acknowledge their transgressions. And when things go wrong for them, they want to find someone else to blame.
But, once again, the bible says, (Prv 13:15) Good understanding giveth favour: but the way of transgressors is hard.
If you continually go against the instruction of God, and not acknowledge, your transgressions, then you are in line for punishment. And believe me, He can cause you to fall to your knees, and cry out, for mercy. That is, if you have sense enough to realize that.
But, unfortunately, too many of us, are so ingrained, with the idea that when bad things happen to us, that, it has to be because of someone else. Because we aren't doing anything wrong.
The mere fact that God, may be allowing these things to happen to us, is so far from our psyche, that we will proclaim, 'The God I serve, wouldn't do anything like this. I wouldn't serve a God, like that.'
Well, guess what, if the god you serve is the way you say he is, then you are not,
serving the One True God, but a cheap counterfeit.
You see, God, in His righteousness, knows what would happen to us, if we were left to our own ways. We would first, destroy ourselves, physically. Then, to top that off, we would end up in hell.
So, He gives us rules, to live by, that will help us to grow up to be like Him. And He gave us a human example as the mold of what we could be, and that is Jesus Christ.
But, here, we have a problem, and that is, we see Jesus, only from one side. And that side is, the gentle, loving, merciful Lord, that cares for us. After all, the gospel presents Him to us, in essentially that light.
However, the gospel does present the realization of the other side
of the issue.
You can read about how, many times, He warned about what would happen to those that were wicked. He preached about hell, nearly 1/3 of the time, during His ministry.
Then we have the example of what happened to a man, and his wife, in the church, for lying to Peter, (Acts 5: 1 - 10)
. They were struck dead, right there in the church. Then we have what He is presented like, in the book of Revelations.
This is not the same Lord and Savior that we see, or have been taught about in the gospels. This is a Jesus, that most of us, don't know about, or just plain, don't want to know.
So, we go around in our ignorance, refusing instruction from Him, and then, when something happens to someone else, we will say, in our hypocrisy, 'God sure taught them. I have always said, 'what goes around, comes around.' In other words, they can, in so many words, pronounce God's wrath on others, but when it comes on them, their God isn't like that.
One glaring example of this type of mentality, surfaced recently after hurricane Katrina went through New Orleans, and Mississippi.
Robert Kennedy Jr., son of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, and nephew of JFK, wrote in an article for a certain paper, that God, was punishing Mississippi, for, electing a Republican governor, and supporting George Bush, for president. And, people were quick to agree with him.
Well, the article was published several hours before the levees in New Orleans broke, and flooded it out. New Orleans has a Democratic mayor, and Louisiana has a Democratic governor. So the question is, given what Kennedy said, why did New Orleans suffer so much more massive destruction, than Mississippi??
Could it be that God was sending us a message?? What about 9/11?? If God is in control of everything, and, as many preachers in the black community say, 'God is able', then that means He was able to stop both of these catastrophes from happening. But, He didn't.
The question we need to be asking is, 'Why didn't He stop them from happening??' The answer is simple. God is not pleased with this nation, and its, steady defiance to His will, and direction.
We put leaders in office, that support all sorts of sinful behavior, like abortion, and gay rights. We talk about and embrace the notion of 'Separation of Church and state.' We want to say, capital punishment (Ge 9:6) Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man,
is wrong, and immoral. Yet, it is God, who instituted it. So, if it is immoral, then God has to be immoral. Then when someone says these beliefs are wrong, they are lampooned, and lambasted, just like the prophets in the old testament. And what happened to those that persecuted the prophets?? God, destroyed them.
So, what do you think, God, who never changes, does today??
The whole point is, we want God to be like us, flippant, wishy washy, double minded, and the like. Willing to overlook our shortcomings, not through repentance, but because He is so merciful, and He is our buddy.
But the bible says, (Luke 13:3) I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
We have to move up to His level, He is not coming down to ours.