It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter. Proverbs 25:2

Archive for November, 2021

Self-Pity and Self-Focus Are Wicked Schemes of The Enemy

Self-pity and selfishness are all cunning schemes used by Satan to ensnare humanity; those God created for His glory.  Self-pity and self-focus are the natural state of fallen mankind. They are woven into the very fabric of our conscience, through the constant bombardment of self-importance that people are fed while viewing and listening to in the media. People’s emotions are trained by what they have seen in advertisements andwitness through peer pressure. This  have cultivate a craving for things and creates a since of lack or failure when they do not have these possessions. But, God has told us to be thankful in all circumstances knowing this is God’s will for our lives. 

Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

1 Thessalonians 5:15-18 See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Whenever the problem is centered around something concerning self, or if the explanation of the troubles are flooded with the words “me, my or I” , then the focus is on self andone’s self-importance which are character traits of Satan.  The deception is to get people to indulge in self-pity and to turn their focus from God while they elevate their importance in their own eyes. The enemy would rather have people focusing on their problems and not their God. The word tells us to show the love of God when we have been wronged because love is patient, kind and is not arrogant or puffed up.

Isaiah 14:12-15 “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, Youwho weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart:
‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregationOn the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’ Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, To the lowest depths of the Pit.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Self-pity may sound as though it is directed toward one’s self but it is actually an emotion that is targeted toward others. Self-pity is when a person is feeling sorry for themselves, theirtroubles and they are preoccupied with themselves, but their goal is to attract attention or empathy from others for attention or some other benefit. Self-pity reveals itself in the form of questions as; why me, why did this happen to me, or why am I always so unlucky? It is natural fallen state to feel self-pity but the continued focus on self will only pull people down into more misery. We are called to transform our lives from this fallen world system to that of God’s ways and our new citizenship in the kingdom of God. We are to renew our mindsand to change the way we think. 

Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Everyone in this fallen world was born with an ego, a sense of self-importance and with thoughts of their rights and how they should be treated.  When people are not treated as they believed they should be, then they tend to fall into self-pity, whichcauses them to focus on their hurts.  Some people want to decide how their lives should go and how they should be treated and they want to become rulers of the providence over their lives and others. In doing this they are refusing to acknowledge God and His sovereign reign over all creation.  This cultivates an ungrateful and thankless attitude towards God and His plans for their lives.   Followers of Christ are called to walk according to the Spirit of God and not in the ways of this world. 

Galatians 5:16-17  I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.  For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 

Many Christians, in their lack of understanding of God’s word, will feed into this pandemonium and uproar of self-pity and despair in others, thinking they are doing the right thing. Theytend to feed those who are in this pit of self-pity a continuous diet of validations, agreeing that these things should not have happened and also feeding their self-pity. Some will even add confusion by questioning, why did this happen, or why is life so unfair, while making a reference or implying that God seems to be unjust. Though it may not actually be verbalized, it is the unspoken consensus that somehow God allowed these injustices and cruelties to happen and somehow God was not fair. Rather than taking a stand on the word of God, the faithfulness of God and His love. 

Philippians 2:13-15 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 

We are told we would have tribulations in this world and people would persecute us, we are told to not be weary in well doing because God is faithful and a rewarder to those who diligently seek Him. We can refuse to indulge in our sinful, human nature of self-pity and choose to have a thankful and grateful heart, trusting in God and His love for us. We may never be able to see God’s providential way in our circumstances but true followers of Christ must hold fast to their faith in His word and the proof of His love that He displayed toward us in the life, death and resurrection of Christ. 

Romans 5:8-10 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.   For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.  

Changing our thoughts and actions to line up with God’s word is a challenge for all true followers of Christ and can only be done by the power of the Holy Spirit and faith in God’s word. We are told we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us and if we are suffering we are to pray to God and give Him thanks for who He is and what He is doing in our lives. 

Philippians 4:12-13 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.   I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,  knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.   But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 

James 4:7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

We are called to be dead to the things of this world and alive to those things that are important to God. Nothing is more precious to God than the souls of mankind. When the people offended Jesus, His disciples wanted to call fire from heaven on them, but Jesus told His disciples that they did not understand what manner of Spirit they were of. God’s wrath has been satisfied in the death of Jesus that His mercy and love can be extended to all humanity. As followers of Christ, we are to stand in the gap for those who are lost, love those that hate us and pray for those who misuse us. By showing the love themwill know we are of God.  

Luke 9:55 But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem.   And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?” But He turned and rebuked them, and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.” And they went to another village.

The way to live this life with joy, peace and love is to die to self, self-centeredness, pride and self-importance. A dead man is not concerned with what you do or say to him or how you treat him because he is dead and will not respond to those evil and hurtful things. True followers of Christ are called to be crucified with Him, no longer living for self or for self-importance but by faith in the love God has for us and to pray for those who persecute us. 

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

Do Not Be Easily Offended!

Offense is a tool of the enemy to get people ensnared with pride and unforgiveness. True followers of Christ should strive to change their world view and personal perspective from being easily offended to being dead to insults and offenses through the power of the Holy Spirit. We live in a time when people respond to difficulties and troubles in a manner that could show offence, resentment or a perceived self-importance, which they may consider the norm. Being easily offended is now not only considered as the rule in which people should react, but it is being cultivated as a preferred way to react to problems and struggles. 

Offense is just a snare, a trap and a tool that the enemy uses against humanity to get them to react to situations out of hate and anger rather than according to God’s way of forgiveness, love and mercy. Those who walk according to this fallen world system not only operate in offense but some people will cultivate it as a means of bringing division and disunity for their own personal gain or agenda. They organize and encourage a spirit of fear, anger and hate as merchandize and market it for their ill-gotten or corrupt gain, be it money, status or fame. 

Romans 16:17-18 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.  For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple.

Matthew 18:7 Woe to the world because of offenses! For offenses must come, but woe to that man by whom the offense comes!

Two words that are commonly translated to the word offense in the Bible are, Skandalizo: to entrap, trip up, stumble or entice to sin, and mikshowl: a stumbling block, obstacle, enticement, to cause to fall or ruin. Both of these terms speak of the harm and injury it causes to those who operate in offense. They areentrapped or enticed to sin and these are pitfalls that lead to devastation or a spiral downfall into ruin of one’s self. Offense is not something that harms the offender but enslaves the person who is offended into a continuous cycle of a feeling of resentment where that person believes that they have beeninsulted, attacked or assaulted by others. 

Offense is driven by emotion that has its roots in self-importance, pride and unforgiveness. True followers of Christ should operate in faith according to the word of God and the example Jesus our Lord has set for us. Jesus speaks of those who are offended as those who have no root in God’s word within themselves. Many people are offended by the word of God when they lack an understanding of God’s kingdom ways or when things do not happen the way they want or in a way they do not understand.  

The Bible teaches that we will see persecution and that there will be a constant test of our faith in God’s word. Those who have faith in God and know His word will believe He is faithful and will persevere to see the challenge to the end, where they will stand in victory. Those who do not know God or His kingdom ways lack an understanding of His word and when He speaks a hard saying they are offended because they choose to trust in their emotions and their experiences rather than in the love and faithfulness of God. 

Mark 4: 16-17 These likewise are the ones sown on stony ground who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with gladness; and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble

John 6:60-61 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, “This is a hard saying; who can understand it?” When Jesus knew in Himself that His disciples complained about this, He said to them, “Does this offend you? 

Not only are people of the world easily offended but those who know and love Christ are subject to offense also, when the pressure and onslaught of this world come and they find themselves in the crucible of life crushing trials.  John the Baptist was the person that preached the coming of Christ and introduced Jesus to the world as the Messiah. Yet John questioned Jesus when he was facing death. John did not understand fully, God’s plan for his situations and hiscircumstances were not going the way he felt they should. This caused in him a moment of offense. John asked Jesus if He was really the One or will there be another?  When people are in difficult situations it will sometimes cause them to question God’s love and His faithfulness to His word.  

Jesus’ response to John’s question was to point to the word of God and the work of God being done for the salvation of men. Jesus did not try to justify Himself or to prove He was the Son of God but He pointed to the work of God and the word of God being revealed in the lives of the lost. Jesus told them to go tell John, the blind see, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, in other words God’s divine purpose and plan are being performed and lived out. 

Jesus said, blessed are those who are not offended because of Me. Even though Jesus may not respond the way we want Him to or we may not understand the way God has chosen for ourparticular situation, we still trust God’s love.  

Luke 7:20-23 When the men had come to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, ‘Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?’ ”  And that very hour He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight. Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel preached to them.  And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.” NKJ

Jesus gave His disciples directions as how not to be offended, He spoke to them the word of God and told them the things that were going to happen. Jesus said these things were told them sothat they would not be offended when they happened and causethem to stumble. 

The word of God is precious to true followers of Christ but to the world and those who are disobedient to God, the word of God becomes a stumbling stone a rock of offence. Some people will allow their offense to take precedence and rise above the word of God and will lead them into destruction. Some peoplewould rather live with their pride and indignation rather than to forgive and live-in love and harmony with their family or friends. 

John 16:1-4 These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.  They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service. And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me.  But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them.

1 Peter 2:7-8 Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.

Many people are living in anxiety and stress because they have allowed offense of this world to be their steady diet and their daily sustenance which feeds them and keeps them in a constant cycle of distrust and hate.  They are stumbling because they refuse to operate in forgiveness, love and according to His truth. 

Great is the peace of them that love the word of God and live according to His kingdom principles and ways because they will not allow the offenses of this world to take root in their hearts or cause them to live in resentment and bitterness. 

Psalm 119:165 Great peace have those who love Your law,And nothing causes them to stumble.

Matthew 11:6 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

Jesus called those blessed, who are not offended because of Him. Those who are blessed of God have His favor, are called fortunate and well off. This is not to say they are without trouble but they know how to persevere through difficulties to see the salvation and the abundance of God.

We can choose to not be offended when we feel we are wronged by operating in God’s word. He speaks of our persecution but tells us to forgive.

Forgiveness is at the heart of the gospel and is the foundation and bedrock of how we are to live without being easily offended. When offense comes we can overcome it with the love and forgiveness of God through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Abundant Life In Jesus

It is God who breathes into us His life-giving Spirit when we receive Jesus as our Master and Lord.  Some people want Jesus to be the One who saves them from their sin, rebellion and from themselves, but Jesus must be Lord and Master also.  Because of His life, death and resurrection, Jesus is the One who has the right and authority to direct, lead and tell us how to live this lifethat we have received through Him. 

John 13:13-15  Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.  If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.  For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.  KJV 

Some people have received God’s life-giving Holy Spirit but have not obtained a good understanding of what it is to live the abundant life Jesus came to give. Many believers in Christ still struggle with living an abundant life, because the soul of their mind is still rooted in the consciousness of this fallen worldsystem. This world cultivates a spirit of greed, materialism, jealousy and envy that has people in covetousness, which causes division, distrust and hatred among themselves. 

Many believers’ minds have not been renewed by the word of God or to His perspective and way of living. Followers of Christ are asked, pleaded with and begged to renew their minds to God’s way and His perspective. To be transformed to Hisways of thinking and to perceive life, happiness and success according to God’s kingdom ways on earth. We are to be an example to the fallen world around us and show them what it means to live an abundant life in Christ.  This does not mean we will live a life without troubles but we are to have a mindset of peace believing God will bring us out of every trouble and situation in a way that will bring glory to God.

Romans 12: 1-2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. NKJ

Our concept of life, happiness and success are built on how we perceive, view and value the things around us. Jesus is our example and His word is our guide that we should use to rethink the way we experience life and its purpose. Somepeople think that their lives are for them to live and experience the finer things and if they fail to obtain the level of wealth and fame they desire, they believe God has failed or forsaken them. But sometimes the problem is how they view their situations and circumstances and what they are experiencing. 

If we see our lives as tools for God’s purpose and to be used sothat He may display His love, mercy and compassion to the lost, then when the troubles of life come we will not loose heart.  In the Bible we see the people of God experiencing tribulations and persecution all for God’s purpose and to display who He is to the lost so that they may acknowledge and receive Him as their God.  

Joseph was sold by his brothers into slavery but he saved his family and nations from starvation and famine. David washunted by Saul, who sought to kill him, but David became a great king in Israel. Paul was whipped, stoned and left for dead by his people but became the apostle to the non-Jews, gentiles and now the word of God is open to all humanity. Jesus was crucified that He may bring many sons to the Father.  Weshould change the way we view our challenges and troubles so that we may live a life of expectancy, looking forward to see the mysteries of God and how He will work out our challenges for our good and His glory.  We should know and believe that God is working all these things together for our good and that thelikeness of Christ is being revealed in our inner soul and spiritfor His glory. 

Romans 8:28-30 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.   For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.   Moreoverwhom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. NKJ

We are to live in hope and in anticipation to see how God will take these difficulties and dilemmas that we are facing and use them to display His glory on the earth. If we live in fear, regret and disappointment we will lose sight of God and His purpose for us on earth. We as followers of Christ must choose to cast down every thought and imagination that sets itself against the word of God. We must choose to walk in faith that God is faithful and choose to believe in His compassion and love for us, which gives us hope to persevere in tribulations. In this we can show the love of God to the wounded, hurt and those living in hate because the love of God is poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit toward them.   

Romans 5:1-5 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.   And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance,character; and character, hope.   Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. NKJ

When our minds have been transformed and our perspectivesand views are changed to line up with the word of God, then we will understand that God has made every person nation on earth and He has determined their times and where they are to live.  The followers of Christ should seek the Lord and show His love to others. It is by God and the Holy Spirit in us that we can live, move and have our purpose of life as children of the Most-High God. We are to take on the Divine nature of God, which is to show love, forgiveness, mercy, compassion and grace to the undeserving and lost. 

Acts 17:26-30 And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings,   so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;   for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’   Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising. NKJ 

Jesus said He came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. The might in this statement is showing that the power and the capacity of an abundant life is ours to have. The possibility of this abundance is offered to all who believe, but once again the choice is left up to each individual to choose whether they will view life according to the world or the word of God. 

John 10:10 he thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. KJV

Abundant life is not how much we have in the way of gold, silver or the riches of this world, but it is our perspective and how we view God our Father and others. We are here to fulfill our created purpose, to replenish the earth and to glorify God in our relationship with God the Father and Jesus Christ whom He sent.

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