The primary message of our culture focuses on human beings realising who they are and being given free-reign to express that. One of the consequences of this rationale is that people are encouraged to indulge their sexual appetites freely, just so long as non-one else gets hurt. The thought of saving sex for marriage is mocked.
However, the biblical way, and the thereby godly way, is for a sexual relationship to only be enjoyed within marriage. Many would see this as the way of bondage after all freedom is found in doing what you want when you want with whoever you want. I would strongly disagree with this though.
Freedom is found when a boy or girl determine at a young age that they will not give their bodies to another person before marriage. Freedom is found in the keeping of that vow. Why do I say this? I say this because as a result of making that commitment you are saved from all the mind disturbing and heart wrenching deliberations revolving around the dilemma of ‘should I do it now with this person?’
Moreover, you are saved from all the destabilisation that is caused by premarital sexual sin. Paul expresses it Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body (1 Cor. 6:18). Something happens to us when we engage sexually with someone and this is terribly harmful to our beings when it is outside the marriage bond. The scientific explanation of this focuses on Oxytocin and is fully explained here.
Let us finally be clear fornication is destructive and is against the call of God for His people. To indulge in it is terrible thing. So right now if you are unmarried resolve to flee fornication.
“I believe that the very purpose of life is to be happy” (Dalai Lama IV).
“The first priority of my life is to be holy” (John Wesley).
Who do you think is closest to the truth, Wesley or the Dalai Lama?
Let me have a go at a response:
- Holiness leads to happiness. Seeking after happiness leads to despair.
- Holiness leads to happiness because holiness means that we are separated to God. And it is in God that we come to find true happiness.
- Holiness is not about becoming religious; it is about being specially for God. As an illustration my Mum used to reserve certain crockery for use on special occasions. In a sense that crockery was holy because it was set aside for special use.
- Happiness sought for its own sake always leads to despair because happiness is only found in God through Christ by His Spirit.
- We come to God in Christ. It is in Christ that we are separated to God. We find holiness in Christ.
- Holiness is not boring because it is therein that we find true joy. It is in Christ that we find true contentment.
- God is not a kill-joy; He wants His creatures to be happy. When God created the world He created a place of delight, harmony, beauty and happiness. He created this for His special creation; human beings.
- Sin ruined this idyllic scene.
- Since the fall, men have been seeking to find happiness without God and relentlessly have failed that which they have sought.
- God, through His Son established the way back to Himself. In the Son we are set apart to God, we are holy. In the Son we are brought to God and in the Son we are happy.
- So praise God for the Son of His love, our Lord Jesus. It is through Him we are brought to God.
My conclusion then is that both statements when properly understood are true. But they can only be properly understood when viewed through the prism of God’s grace in Christ.
When you have stopped learning you have stopped living. This seems a particularly appropriate observation for our living out of the Christian life. This is because the Christian is called to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 3:18a). We grow through learning. Let us ponder upon that:
- We learn through studying the Scriptures. They are the testimonies that lead us into life.
- We learn through the experiences of life. Thereby we learn of ourselves and the gracious keeping power of our God.
- There are times when we get life wrong and we have to learn from our mistakes. It is a fool who does not learn from his mistakes.
- I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw (Prov. 24:32) is what Solomon says and expresses the attitude we should have. It shows a determination not to waste any experience in life. We must learn form everything
- In Proverbs 1:5 we read let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance. Continually we look for that which will establish us in our faith in Christ Jesus.
Fellow Christian, then let us always have a thirst for learning. And as we learn let us grow. Lets us not be like those who are always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth (2 Tim. 3:17). Rather, may our learning always be leading to godliness. And in such a way we will be really living.
It is more important to be godly than to get my own way.
It is more important to be godly, because when I am godly I am pleasing my God. And that is the essence of what life is about.
If you are godly and you get your own way, you are not essentially getting your own way, but God is getting His way through you.
And if you do not get your own way, you can know that having the Lord’s favour upon you through being godly is far more important.
So it is more important to be godly than to get your own way.
I read this book a little while ago. A profoundly insightful book into the realities of our own hearts.
Certainly this is an uncomfortable book, but it is a book we should all read. It tears open our souls before the all seeing eye of our redeemer God. And yet we are led amidst it all to realise the all sufficient provision in Jesus Christ our LORD. One abiding challenge for me is that I can only resist sin to achieve a life that can move forward healthily for God through the enabling of the Holy Spirit. This opens up much to ponder upon as regards to making sure that every day I am turning my life over to the Lord to be my enabler.
So a book that should be read by any Christian that is serious about living a life for the glory of the Lord.
The Christian life is presented in the scripture as something that relentlessly is lived out in every aspect of our lives. Paul sums his attitude to life when he said F0r to me to live is Christ and to die is gain (Phil 1:22). Christ was in every aspect of his life.
Two of the words then that describe a true living for Christ are consistency and steadfastness. Certain things should be a part of our lives and we steadfastly determine that they remain a part of our lives. Satan would want us to ignore them or to leave them out. But we realize they are essential and so we cleave to them. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer (Acts 2;42) is what is recorded of the first church established in this New Testament age. No special event Christianity. Rather it was the relentless commitment to God’s way.
Alas for many the special event Christianity syndrome reigns. If there is something special on they will be there. They want to be at that. if there is something out of the ordinary they will make a point of being there. But the normal functions of the church are ignored. How sad.
One observation I have had over recent years is how people come to the UK from another country and lose their fire for the LORD. Back in their home country, they were experiencing great fervour and devotion to the Lord. But when they come to the UK, that dissipates and no longer is the fire burning strongly in their love for and service of the LORD. What are we to make of this:
- This reflects something of the spiritual temperature in the UK in comparison to other countries. Here in the UK the fervour for God among God’s people is generally not burning with the same ferocity as in many other parts of the world.
- Churches receiving people from outside the UK do not respond effectively to make sure that people are encouraged to settle in the church and burn brightly for the Lord. Too many unnecessary cultural blockages are placed in the way.
- The immigrating believers themselves have depended on being surrounded by fire back home. Accordingly, when they are out of that situation they start to fade away spiritually. This is because the fire has been generated from outside of them and not sufficiently from the Lord burning in their own hearts.
On the other side I have heard of those who have gone to other countries from the UK and said they would never want to come back to the UK. The reason for this is that they have experienced such spiritual hunger and vitality in their new location in comparison to what they experienced back in the UK.