Monday, June 27, 2016

Quick to Testify


I will come to you in judgment. I will be quick to testify against those who practice divination, those who commit adultery, those who break promises, and those who exploit workers, widows, and orphans, who refuse to help the immigrant and in this way show they do not fear Me,” says the Lord who rules over all.  Malachi 3:5

I would like to clarify that the immigrant in the Old Testament was expected to assimilate into the existing culture. They were to be welcomed and instructed about the one true God of Israel--the ONLY God--all other "gods" are pretenders. The immigrants were to be in every way normal citizens--working, paying taxes, learning the language and ways of the people who took them in.  The holy days were not changed to accommodate the traditions the immigrants had left behind. (Numbers 9:14) In no way would it ever have been expected that the culture would accept abominable practices of idolatry that the immigrants may have wished to bring along with them (1 and 2 Kings), or that they should become unsustainable burdens on society (and this goes for all ABLE-bodied residents, not only immigrants). (Proverbs 10:4, 12:11, 13:4, 14:23, 20:4, 21:25, 2 Thessalonians 3:10)

The understanding was that since God provided all of the blessings, that He would continue to do so while people honored and obeyed Him, and Him alone. (Deuteronomy 28) Even though our country has benefited in many ways from being a melting pot, that is not what made it great.  It only became great because of God's blessings and the foundation set in place by its forefathers who feared God.

Praise the LORD!
Blessed is the man who fears the LORD,
who greatly delights in his commandments!
His offspring will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in his house,
and his righteousness endures forever.
Light dawns in the darkness for the upright;
he is gracious, merciful, and righteous.
It is well with the man who deals generously and lends;
who conducts his affairs with justice.
For the righteous will never be moved;
he will be remembered forever.
He is not afraid of bad news;
his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.
His heart is steady; he will not be afraid,
until he looks in triumph on his adversaries.
He has distributed freely; he has given to the poor;
his righteousness endures forever;
his horn is exalted in honor.
The wicked man sees it and is angry;
he gnashes his teeth and melts away;
the desire of the wicked will perish!
Psalm 112

All of the sins listed in the verse at the top of this page and more are still grievous to God.  He doesn't change. (Hebrews 13:8) He still hates what He hates and loves what He loves. (Proverbs 6:16-19) We are not Israel as a nation or people.  However, we are God's children adopted and "grafted into the olive tree" of Israel and her blessings (Romans 11:11-31) IF we believe that Jesus died to pay for our sins and rose again from the dead. (Romans 10:8-10) This belief needs to be true in our hearts and also backed up by our actions, otherwise it is a lie and we do not fear God at all. (1 John 2:4-5) Jesus is Lord of all, and that most certainly applies to each of those who belong to Him. (Romans 8:9)

God owns the earth and everything in it (Psalm 24:1) and He knows our very thoughts (Psalm 139)--He can't be fooled.  (Galatians 6:7-8)  He loves His creation (John 3:16) and sustains the wicked along with the good (Matthew 5:45, Matthew 13:24-30), but this will not continue forever.  He is going to sort the true believers from the false "believers" and unbelievers in the future (Matthew 24 and 25) and we don't know when (Mark 13:32), but every day is one day closer to that time.  That separation is only something to look forward to for true believers. (2 Timothy 4:8, 1 Peter 3:11-12) For the rest, the Bible says that people's hearts will fail them out of fear caused by what is happening. (Luke 21:25-26, 2 Peter 3:8-10, Amos 5:18-20) Everything that can be shaken will be shaken.

See that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. For if they did not escape when they refused Him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape if we reject Him who warns from heaven. At that time His voice shook the earth, but now He has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain.  Hebrews 12:25-27

Get right with God today!  The only way to the Father is through the Son.  Humble yourselves.  (1 Peter 5:5-8)  God detests pride. (Proverbs 8:13, 16:5) If anyone boasts, it is to be that they know Him. (1 Corinthians 1:31)

Jesus said to Him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."  John 14:6

I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.  John 10:9

Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. John 3:18-19

paper by Marta van Eck, element by Holliewood Studios