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Above All

 

Itís obvious that all Christians do not mature at the same pace as others. A friend of mine said Christians grow because of what they eat. What he meant was that the few that donít eat at Godís table donít grow as fast as those who are spoon fed. Those who are spoon fed have not matured enough to eat solid food so their mother purees their food into a paste to ensure that their baby has a nourishing meal. Those who eat solid food select what they eat off the plate and cut it into manageable bite size pieces. You could also say parents choose the diet for the spoon fed and are forced to eat what their parent thinks is best for them. However, those who eat solid food, choose what they eat even though it may not be the food they need to grow right.

Because of this not every Christian is as mature as another. Some remain at the kindergarten level while others work hard to obtain a doctorate level in their Christian education. Some want enough knowledge to get by while others want to know God intimately on a personal level. However everyone has the right to believe what they choose to believe and some choose to believe what another may choose to disregard.  

Some are willing to go to town with very little proof of what they are about to attempt and some want to consider every aspect before doing anything about it. But in either case it is better to hear both sides of the issue before making decisions. Above all, God teaches his children to acquire a spirit of restraint.

Otherwise donít jump into the pond because it looks safe to swim because you may be injured by colliding with a rock you didnít see. The road to maturity is filled with a number of things that harm you but the average person learns the truth by the consequences of the unknown. From Godís viewpoint itís prudent to learn from the mistakes other men have made and we find that Godís word is filled with stories showing consequences of men who were doing what is right in their eyes.

Although God created man with eyes to see and ears to hear, God also knows the heart of man has been infected by a vicious sin nature. This sin nature infects the capability of men to perceive essential spiritual truth needed to be seen and heard for proper growth. However, whether sinner or saint, most men have selective seeing and hearing that allows them to sin against God.  God has given man a choice to choose life but the sin nature will tell you that you donít need to take up on Godís offer. The bible tells us that,

The infection of the sin nature demands your attention because the heart of man can be healed with divine involvement. The average person goes to the doctor with physical problems to understand what is wrong and learn what they need to do to be well again. However infection of the heart is spiritual but the symptoms of this infection is of a kind that will cause you to avoid God at all cost and close your mind to what you need to be right before God.  The cure for this infection demands attention from mankindís heavenly physician to open your spiritual eyes and enable you to hear with your spiritís ears. Just hearing the gospel of Jesus Christ will open your spiritual eyes and ears to help you understand the choice God has given to every man woman and child to live eternally. The bible says,

Because of Satanís influence on mankind, men spurn the word of God and think Godís Plan of Salvation as foolishness. Because they are of this world they know how this world works and listen to the worldís opinion. The god of this age has blinded them (2 Corinthians 4:4) and they do the same things as their father does (John 8:44). Their father allows them to throw common decency to the ground with cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery. (Hosea 4:2)

Godís word is filled with the consequences of doing what is right in the eyes of men especially those who make no attempt to control the sin nature.  The Christianís only advantage is to learn from the mistakes that sinners have made and weigh those deeds against the penalty that thieves, murderers, adultery and liars receive. God disciplines his children to have restraint so they will respect the needs on one another.

The heart of man can be healed with divine involvement, but heart of man can also be poisoned by men who handle the word of God improperly.  When I first started going to church I believed that Christ would return for his elect before the tribulation period would take place. The bible tells me to test everything about the tribulation period, so how do I connect the tribulation period to the bible when there is no mention of a tribulation period? How do I hold on to the good if there is no way to connect what the bible says compared to what men say? Due to the practice of testing all things I am no longer swayed by what men teach, instead I look to see what God has to say on that subject.

Since God has established the truth and it makes sense to live by the divine truth. You see, man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord (Deuteronomy 8:3). In other words, everyone has a truth they believe, but Godís word serves as the umpire that settles the matter. Godís word is supreme so no one can argue with his wisdom.

 Because man tends to believe what he hears God has asked his children to use caution to prevent being deceived. "Consider carefully what you hear," (Mark 4:24).  He asked that we bring every pretense and every word we hear into captivity and check what we heard and bring it into agreement with the word of God (2 Corinthians 10:5). You see, Satan is a deceiver that uses his influence to distort the word of God, and in doing so he keeps Christians at odds with each other.

Christians must adopt a standard of truth that is not their own and who better than the author of Godís word. Truth must be held absolutely sacred by Christians when it is established by God. The words ďabove allĒ in the passage above speak of a priority that Christians require to settle every matter.

Three verses within this article summarize the deceit Christians face daily. The words ďAbove AllĒ may be a means to alert every Christian that Satan is a deceiver and how to prepare for spiritual warfare.

The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9

Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. 2 Peter 1:20

Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. Proverbs 4:23

Donít kid yourself, everyone can be deceived. Guard your heart by taking the precaution of spending time with God to know him. Man does not live from what the earth produces, rather man lives by every word spoken by the mouth of the Lord (Deuteronomy 8:3), and this is a reality that we must come to grips with. Study and meditation of Godís word is a sure way to know God and understand how he meant the bible to be interpreted (Joshua 1:8). Ultimately the truth will set you free and enable to understand God (John 8:32).  

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