Monday, December 10, 2012

Discernment

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (John 10:10).

The Bible is a book of contrasts revealing the benefits of being a child of God. It is a book of history that shows many people being made perfect through their faith in Jesus and His power to change the hearts of even the most difficult. It is God’s way of revealing His love as opposed to Satan trying to deceive us in his hatred. All the way through the inspired accounts of men and women going through transformation we can easily see that choosing God’s love is the only way.

The Bible begins with the creation: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Right away we must choose to believe God’s version or the many different illogical theories of man, such as the “Big Bang” theory. The choice was made possible by the human mind that seems to stumble when it must simply trust God for understanding of something that is too big for it to envelop. The finite human mind just cannot fathom the world coming into existence just from God speaking. It has to be able to physically see something to believe it, so it has come up with its own explanation, the world accidently being brought together as a result of a great explosion in the atmosphere. But this author dares to ask which one of these possibilities takes more faith to believe, God’s truth or man’s lies. We have been given a great opportunity to believe in God through his creation: “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:20). Denying God’s power will only cause one to be denied eternal life when judgment comes.

The Bible also contrasts good and evil. Since the beginning of time we have clearly seen this battle between what God is trying to produce in man and what Satan is trying to deceive man into becoming. God created Adam and Eve and placed them in the “paradise” of His companionship but Satan appeared as a serpent to tempt them to surrender this relationship for one that he deceived them to believe would be better for them. He did this by manipulating the truth God gave Adam by adding one word. He added the word “not” to God’s statement, “…for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die" (Genesis 2:17) and said, “"You surely will not die!” (Genesis 3:3). By adding one word to God’s command he led Adam and Eve to surrender their relationship with God for a relationship with death.

We who are in a relationship with God through the covenant He established in His Son are being tempted everyday through the same trickery of Satan. He comes like a lamb in sheep’s clothing to “steal, kill and destroy” our relationship with God. He deceives us and tempts us to believe in something that is not true like he did in the Garden of Eden. But God’s grace has given us true food that, once digested, will make us defiant to Satan’s trickery: “But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil” (Hebrews 5:14). The contrast here is mature and immature. We are tempted to be content with our knowledge of God’s truth so that we will not mature. This is Satan’s way of keeping us vulnerable to his evil scheme. So we must grow so our “love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment” (Philippians 1:9) so we will not stumble into making the wrong choice. God’s love will guide us into His abundant life if we will make the proper choice.

In His Grace,
Cub

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