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Thursday, January 26, 2017
"Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God." (Galatians 5:19-21)
War is the quintessential evidence that the flesh loves conflict. The flesh is at enmity with God (Romans 8:7), cannot love God, and, despite the most ardent self-identification as Christian, is a willing tool of the spirit of Antichrist when fed a steady diet of hatred, finger-pointing, contention, baseless accusation, unkind words (Proverbs 15:1), and strife.
"A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger." (Proverbs 15:1)
"Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom." (Proverbs 13:10) When members of the religious elite, the modern-day pharisaical consensus, tweets, posts, or otherwise goes on record speaking in a manner that implies that the gospel is aligned with unloving and unseasoned hate speech (Matthew 5:44, Colossians 4:6), the love of money (1 Timothy 6:10-12), schism in the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 1:10-25), unforgiveness (Matthew 6:15), and other distinguishing qualities of spiritual immaturity, hypocrisy, and self righteousness, civil war looms as a viable outcome. This is good news for doomsday preppers. However, the gospel it is not (Luke 2:10). Tidings of good news it is not. An answer to Jesus' prayer in the seventeenth chapter of the Gospel of John it is not (John 17:21). www.ministryofwritinghelps.com
Unity? What is that among Evangelical political pundits in the media? Where is the love (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)? Where is the joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control against which there is no law (Galatians 5:23)? Finding evidence of spiritual fruit on the news or on social media is like trying to find a needle in a haystack, precisely because Satan is the heavyweight champion prince of the power of the airwaves (Ephesians 2:2) that so easily beset us (Hebrews 12:1) night and day with information that is infinitely less than true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report (Philippians 4:8).
Is the Bible unclear about the fact that if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, we are to think on these things rather than the things of this world (1 John 2:15)? God forbid! Do our angry and unloving posts and tweets reveal that we are in any way devoted to one another in brotherly love (John 13:35) or esteeming one another in honor with humility of mind and regarding one another as more important than ourselves (Romans 12:10 NASB)? Nay. "Because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires." (James 1:20 NIV)
Shame on us! Let us repent and rededicate our unguarded hearts (Proverbs 4:23) to the One God who, while we were yet sinners (Romans 5:8), loved us perfectly, enough to send His only begotten Son (John 3:16) to die a substitutionary death in order to save us from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2). Hallelujah! Why now do we scratch at each other's eyes, reclaiming that to which we should remain dead (Romans 6:1-2) and entangling ourselves perpetually with the yoke of bondage from which Christ died to make us free (Galatians 5:1)?
Help us, Almighty God, to live free today, unencumbered and unspotted by the things of this world (James 1:26-27). Help us to participate in the unification of Christ's body (Romans 12:4-5, 1 Corinthians 12:12). Awaken us spiritually to the fact that "there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism (Ephesians 4:5 ISV). Forgive us our trespasses and empower us supernaturally to forgive those who have trespassed against us (Matthew 6:12-14), Father. Renew a right (Psalm 51:10), mature, loving (1 Corinthians 13:4-8), fruitful spirit (Galatians 5:22-26) that is better able to bear witness with Your Holy Spirit when, encumbered by feelings, we are ignorant of what we should be praying (Romans 8:14-16). Help us, Lord! In Jesus' precious name we pray in faith, believing that You are doing it despite what we see with our own eyes. Amen and amen.
© 2016 Brian L Hunter