Closer Attention than Usual

Do you ever go through your day as you usually do and find it’s shifted and a bit unreal? Today was one of those days. God is working on me to pay attention to what I say and to what I think and to what I do. Closer attention than normal.

Early in the day, I attended a ladies’ Bible study where I mentioned the blog I wrote last night which spoke of sins God wants us to avoid. Some asked if I gave references so others could look up the Word of God. “Not for all of it,” I said.

They encouraged me to do so. So here are the Scriptures that I quoted without chapter and verse with a few more from the (ESV), addressed to believers in First Corinthians:

1Co 6:9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality,
1Co 6:10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
1Co 6:11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
1Co 6:12 “All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be dominated by anything.
1Co 6:13 “Food is meant for the stomach and the stomach for food”—and God will destroy both one and the other. The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body.
1Co 6:14 And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power.

There are Scriptures that encourage and build us up; there are sections that point out our evil desires and those are not easy to hear about. Many verses tell how God sees us and remind us to stay in the faith. The following are from the book of Colossians:

Col 1:7 just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf
Col 1:8 and has made known to us your love in the Spirit.
Col 1:9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,
Col 1:10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.
Col 1:11 May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy,
Col 1:12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.
Col 1:13 He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,
Col 1:14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Col 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
Col 1:16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.
Col 1:17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
Col 1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.
Col 1:19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,
Col 1:20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
Col 1:21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds,
Col 1:22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,
Col 1:23 if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.

With God’s Word, too much emphasis on God’s judgments can cause a person to live in condemnation and fear and possibly legalism. These are my thoughts probably based on things I’ve heard or read, but I don’t know the source.

Too much emphasis on God’s love, disregarding the justice of God can cause a person to live like the devil and think they’re going to heaven. I’ve seen that in people that believe once saved, always saved. Somehow they don’t know the verse about working out your salvation with fear and trembling in Phil. 2:12.

Heaven and hell are not places to take lightly. If God’s Word is man’s instruction manual, a common cliche’ in Christian circles, it bears checking out. God gives free will, we don’t have to believe Him or receive His gift of grace. It’s the most important decision I ever made in my life. As I see how close we are to end times, I hold on and I remind God of His promise to hold onto me. I trust Him more than I trust myself. Be blessed!

 

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