Monday, January 30, 2017
I’m sure you’ve noticed that I more often address the readers of this blog as children of God than as Christians. I do that because many people have the idea that everyone who attends a church or says that he or she believes in Christ is automatically a Christian. Not so! One can sleep in a garage every night but that does not make him a car. It is like the many people who declare that the Bible says that we are all God’s children. No, the Bible does not say that. In fact it says the opposite. John wrote: “He (Christ) came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him. Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in his name, He gave the right to become children of God.” (John 1:11-12) Clearly, only those who receive Christ can truly say they are God’s children. It is biblically correct to say that we are all God’s creation, but only those who receive Christ can rightfully say that they are His children.
I was reminded of the worldly misconception that we are all God’s children when Pastor Mike yesterday mentioned another false belief, namely that God helps those who help themselves. I bet some of you who are reading this blog have heard others say this more than once. There are other phrases people mistakenly think are in the Bible. A notable one is “So let it be written, so let it be done” from the movie we all see at least once a year, “The Ten Commandments.” Here is another often used phrase which is uttered by well meaning folks when trying to comfort those who are grieving: “I’m so sorry for your loss, Heaven must have needed another angel.” I’m sure some of you are angels in the eyes of many who know you, but the truth is that none of us we will ever be angels. The Lord will call us home one day, but it won’t be because He needs another angel. I hope none of you ever uses that phrase in the future. It may do more harm than good.
Five times in His Sermon on the Mount, Jesus began a sentence with these words: “You have heard that it was said….” In all these instances, He was reminding His listeners that they could not accept as truth, everything that others had said or taught. I trust this will remind us of the importance of reading God’s word. The best way to identify the counterfeit is by knowing the genuine. In God’s Word, we have all we need when trying to encourage others or lead them to Him. The more truth you know, the better you will be equipped to help others.
God’s word for today: (2 Timothy 3:16) “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living.” * GNT (Good News Translation)