In yesterday’s blog, I wrote about the nature of people’s character in the last days as predicted by the Apostle Paul in the third chapter of his second letter to Timothy. Without a doubt, these were not classified as God’s people. That is not to say, however, that Christians are totally free of these adverse character traits. For example, we can at times be conceited, unforgiving, boastful and proud, and also love money, pleasures, and even ourselves more than we should. When we turned our lives over to Christ, God’s Spirit within us gave us a new nature but that is not to say that our old nature has completely disappeared. Preachers often refer to it as the flesh or the “old man.” Oops, that reminds me of the old joke about the fellow who was taken to jail for public intoxication. Like many others, he had learned the lingo and the phrases many Christians use. To cite two of them, almost everybody, whether they are genuine believers or not, know about backsliding and the “old man” reference. This man, when he had his chance to stand before a judge again, told him that he was a good Christian and that it was really the old man within him that got drunk. The judge replied: “In that case, I sentence you to 60 days in jail, and the old man will have to go with you.”
Jesus, right before He went to His appointed encounter with the cross, gave His Disciples this word of caution: Watch and pray , that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak . (Matthew 26:41) Because we often struggle with our old nature as well, Paul also wrote: Set your affection on things above, not on earthly things. (Colossians 3:2) Pastor Ruben spoke this past Wednesday about the account in Luke 18 of a certain rich ruler who came to Jesus one day to ask what he could do to inherit eternal life. When Jesus told him to sell what he had and give it to the poor, he declined and went away sad and empty handed. Please don’t think that everyone of us has to do the same. Remember that Jesus knows the heart. In this case, He knew this rich man loved his possessions more than he should. In the end, he was not willing to part with them because his affection for his possessions was stronger than his desire to have eternal life. God’s children can make this mistake too. If we get careless, we can find ourselves loving the temporal things of this world more than we should. Lets set our sights on Jesus. What He has in store for us in this world and especially the next, is far, far greater.
Memory Verse for the week: (Hebrews 13:5 KJV) Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have : for he hath said , I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.