Thought for the Week - 29th August 2022Pastor Gareth Watkins
Though our natural inclination is to label people, in its most extreme form it has caused man to commit some truly horrific acts, the roots of which we can clearly see to be evil. In more subtle forms though, we may look down upon, or mock people, even within our own social circles, unaware of the implications that has. What comes out of our mouths can corrode unity, defile others, and defile ourselves. Words and attitudes can stick, oppress, and even curse.
These things are not of God, they rise up from the rebellion within us. By nature we are a jealous people, born into sin, and in need of our Saviour. Our rebelliousness must be nailed to the cross with Christ, our old self is required to die so that we can be the new creation Christ sacrificed Himself for us to be. The words we speak, and attitudes we hold, should not be the same as they were before.
Change happens by coming to Christ and being honest about who we are, asking Him to forgive us, to change us, and that He would be formed within us.
God wants to see Christ glorified in His people, that we would become more like Him, and emanate His light out into the world around us. Our hearts should no longer filled with all the desires of self, but that which carry the Word of God within them, imprinted into our very being, and touching the hearts of others. We cannot emit Christ, if we don’t believe the Word. Christ is the Word and is spoken throughout all the ages since the beginning of time.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God …And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1)
We have looked at speaking against others, but what about when people speak against God and the bible? They speak against that which is unmovable, they speak against Christ. In James we read …the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. (James 3:6)
People present all sorts of opposition to scripture, some will intellectualise arguments to deny God and justify their sin, while others will try to tear down the good around them through bitterness and hatred.
We cannot bend the Word to suit ourselves, nor can we deny that which is not palatable to us. Many of us will at some point wrestle with a particular scripture, but I have known people to persist and persist in their rebellion and it unfortunately leads to destruction of their spiritual lives. The Scripture cannot be broken, we cannot go up against it, we must repent if we have done, and line our lives up with it. We will come and go, but the Scripture will be fulfilled.
When rebellion rises up within, or the enemy comes in sowing seeds of doubt and confusion, we must stand firm, refusing to bend, and proclaim the unbreakable Word of God. He will hold us fast.