|Matthew 13:40-42 (GNT)|
|40 Just as the weeds are gathered up and burned in the fire, so the same thing will happen at the end of the age: 41 the Son of Man will send out his angels to gather up out of his Kingdom all those who cause people to sin and all others who do evil things, 42 and they will throw them into the fiery furnace, where they will cry and gnash their teeth.|
|This is two days in a row now that I’ve read where Jesus was asked to explain a parable that He shared, and in both cases the explanation was very pointed, but yet very clear. In the story today Jesus had shared the parable of the weeds, that left the disciples scratching their heads, as to the point that Jesus was really aiming for them to grasp and apply to their lives. Not trying to hide anything, Jesus went on to explain the ‘good seed’ and the ‘weeds’ and the application. Let’s look at how this can be applied to our lives even today.|
|It has always been clear that those who sin will never enter the kingdom of God, but some additional words popped off the page at me, when Jesus explained who all His angels will gather together and throw them into the pit of Hell. At least two Bible translations explained very vividly all who would be included in that group. Friends, we often remind ourselves that none are perfect, and that we all sin – children of God and non-believers. You might recall that in another scripture Jesus referred to the children, and He said that He would not tolerate anyone who causes one of these little ones to sin. I believe that statement and the one used in verse 41 above relays the same message. In other words, whether you sin (disobey God’s commands in mind or deed), or if you cause another to sin (in mind or deed), you will be weeded out – much like a gardener would remove weeds from their garden. Jesus said that ALL weeds would be thrown into the fiery furnace for Satan to punish and devour. May I suggest that we may cause others to sin way more often than we would care to accept responsibility for? Friends, let’s remember that although the world may see what would appear to be jest and perhaps even mockery, yet God knows the heart and mind of man, and He knows exactly the intent of the individual doing the act or saying the words. God also knows the impact that our ill-gotten intentions have on the individual to whom we are delivering our evil intentions. Imagine with me for a moment if you knew how badly words might hurt or discourage a person, would you really say them? Imagine how your actions or untimely or hurtful words might distract a person from sharing or possibly hearing the truth of God’s words, and question yourself as to whether you should have created the distraction for that friend. Friends, please join me in committing to always remember that if what we say or do in the presence of others, serves no purpose in drawing them closer to God, then we are probably doing just the opposite. God is our judge, and He knows our deepest intentions. Will He place us with the ‘Weeds‘, or are we truly ‘Good Seed’? I believe you know the answer to that question already. May I encourage you to seek God’s face and His helping hand to help place you on the right track before it is eternally too late?|
|Father, we sincerely need Your help today, especially after being reminded of how often we may place an obstacle in the way of others that may separate them from You. Please dear Lord, help us to never be a stumbling block for anyone else truly seeking Your face, or seeking to hear Your tender voice. Forgive us Lord for the times we discourage others, or place a roadblock in their path to a closer relationship with You, or even from accepting You as Lord in the first place. There was a tremendous forgiveness afforded to us when we bowed before You and asked for forgiveness of our sin. Please help us to stay directed towards being examples of Your forgiving spirit, and the kind of love that You expressed at Calvary for us. This will mean loving others right where they’re at, and not how we want them to be. May we be usable vessels in Your service and never a stumbling block for any of Your children, is my humble prayer. AMEN!|
|There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!|
Archive for the ‘Clear Conscience’ Category
The Holy Bible (The Good News Translation – 1 Timothy 1:3-7): Some people there are teaching false doctrines, and you must order them to stop. 4Tell them to give up those legends and those long lists of ancestors, which only produce arguments; they do not serve God’s plan, which is known by faith. 5The purpose of this order is to arouse the love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and a genuine faith. 6Some people have turned away from these and have lost their way in foolish discussions. 7They want to be teachers of God’s law, but they do not understand their own words or the matters about which they speak with so much confidence.
Thoughts: Timothy’s mentor, Paul, instructed him to stay in Macedonia to help keep religious leaders accountable to the Word of God. Paul found this necessary because the leaders were getting caught up in false doctrines, old stories that were often untrue, and ancestry. As it was then, so it is today friends, for the church was established to tell the Good News of Jesus Christ. Imagine how hopeless Christianity would be today if we went to church to have our ears tickled by words that may or may not be true, but which sounds real good to the hearer. But Paul didn’t just tell Timothy what was wrong, he gave him leadership on what to look for and what to teach in order to help these people. I believe that Paul’s words and leadership is just as applicable to us today, as it was for Timothy in taking the message to the Macedonians. Our actions and our words must be those from a loving and pure heart, a clear conscience and a genuine faith. Some might question how Paul knew what filled the hearts of the church leaders. I would dare say to you friends that most people will quickly tell when you are speaking from a heart of love and genuine compassion. From a heart that has experienced the gospel of which you speak. Conversely, others can tell quicker than you imagine when you are fake, trying to impress, or speaking the words written by someone else without it ever impacting your own heart. There is an old saying “you can fool some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time”! However, putting aside who you can or cannot fool into believing a lie of yours, how would you feel lying in bed at night knowing that you were not totally honest with those that you shared the Word of God with that day? Furthermore, what type of expression would you imagine seeing on God’s face if you were not genuine, faithful and truthful in declaring His Word to a lost person, who will probably continue in their lost condition until they could possibly hear genuine Truth? Missed opportunities will cause you more grief than you might care to experience, friend. For many, there is no time for dancing around the subject, for they may never see another opportunity this side of heaven ….…… or hell. I want to strive towards seeing a smile on God’s face as He listens in to my conversations and/or my teaching, also in my actions, love and concern for the non-Christian. How is it with you friend? Do you suspect there is a smile or disappointment on God’s face as He looks in on your life?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, You paved a perfect path for us to follow. Slogans such as WWJD have helped to attune ourselves to Your guidance, but we often fail in reacting with pure intentions to every scenario in life, and we often seek to please and/or impress our audiences. However, I was deeply reminded today that I may as well come before You as a child, in honesty, purity, innocence and openness, for You know my very heart – my thoughts and my intentions. Please forgive me for the times that I have tried to be anything else to anyone, especially if I misrepresented You or falsely represented myself. I pray that it will not be necessary for You to provide a Paul or Timothy to clear up misrepresentations of myself or my friends who will read this devotional today, for I pray that they will deal with any impacts on their lives, for we want to be pure and holy before You and our fellow man. Please continue to work on us when we stray away from these ideals and help us to stay true to You in our everyday lives. I pray for Your help, Your guidance and in accordance with Your will. I ask all this believing on, and in, the name of Jesus my Lord, AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please speak with a local Bible Teaching pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com so that we can pray with you and give you help and or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Any words underlined above will indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to blogger.nuggetsfromgodsword.org and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, Sebring, FL! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!