Monday, July 27, 2009
Do not be ignorant!
There are 6 times in the New Testament where the writer warns us not to be ignorant of certain things. When someone says to me they want me to know something and not miss something important, especially when it comes from the Holy Scriptures, then I want to pay attention. So, I thought I'd pass these 6 admonitions onto you for you to think about this week.
1. Don't be ignorant about the Lord's second coming and that those who have died before He arrives will meet those of us still alive in the air where we will go be with the Lord forever! 1 Thess 4:13-18 Yet how much controversy this very topic causes among Christians! So much so, that we are afraid to discuss it. I've even heard some people say that if you don't believe in a certain timing of the rapture, then you're not a Christian.
2. Don't be ignorant about the gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, knowledge, Prophecy, Healing, Tongues, Interpretation of Tongues, Faith, Miracles, and Discernment 1 Cor 12: 1-11 Another controversial topic that you rarely hear a sermon on unless you go to a Charismatic or Pentecostal church. Yet Paul warns us not to be ignorant about these gifts.
3. Do not be ignorant of Satan's tricks. 2 Cor 2:11 In other words, don't be ignorant that we have an arch enemy whose mission it is to kill, steal and destroy,( John 10:10) and that He hates followers of Jesus and will do anything he can to make you ineffective for God's Kingdom. Yet, when is the last time you heard a sermon on this?
4. Do not be ignorant about God's chosen people, Israel. that they were blinded on purpose so gentiles could be saved and that when all the gentiles come in, then Israel will be saved. Romans 11: 25-26 God still has a plan for Israel. He has not forgotten His Holy people and we had better align ourselves with God's purposes for Israel or we will be left out.
5. Do not be ignorant about what happened to the Israelites, even though God saved them from Egypt and they passed through the Red Sea and drank water in the desert, when they did evil in God's sight, when they tempted Him, worshipped Idols and complained and behaved immorally, God destroyed them. 1 Corinthians 10:1-11 Don't forget that even though God is Love and He is extremely merciful and filled with grace, He will not always tolerate those who continually reject Him and His law. To me, this is one of the most important things we need to remember. We always hear about God's love and mercy, but how often do you hear about God's judgement and wrath?
6. The Lord is not slow in keeping His promises for to Him a thousand years are like a day. 2 Peter 3: 8-9 Paul starts out in this chapter talking about how we've been warned that in the last days scoffers will make fun of us, but he goes on to say that we can trust the Lord. He is waiting for everyone to have a chance to come to Him, but when that's done, He'll be here in a second!
Wow. It occurred to me as I read through these 6 things that these are the very things that Satan has tried to cause trouble and dissension with in the church. The rapture, Israel, Satan, the gifts of the Spirit, God is only a God of love and mercy, not wrath, and that God isn't coming again. Theses are hot topics, aren't they? And obviously all very important for us to know, to understand and remember. I pray you take some time to read over these scriptures in context and ask God to help you understand them, keep them in the forefront of your thoughts, and most of all, live them.
Who knows how much more time we have here?