Category Archives: Murder

Crisis Help: Stop Abortion

Our heavenly Father calls us not only to seek Him in study of His written word, but also to seek Him in prayer and to live out our lives the way he instructs. He wants us to pray for and work toward righteousness in our society, not just in “the church”. He does not want us to accept wickedness under the guise of cultural acceptance.

According to the World Health Organization, every year an estimated 45 million children are killed inside their mother’s womb by someone carrying out an abortion.  

God clearly tells us life begins in the womb in Jeremiah 1:4-5

The Lord gave me this message:

“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.
    Before you were born I set you apart
    and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”

And again in Psalms 139:13-16

13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
    and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
    Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.
15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
    as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
16 You saw me before I was born.
    Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
    before a single day had passed.

Medical science today undeniably confirms what God told us thousands of years ago. Birth begins at conception and the human life grows inside the mother’s womb.

The baby is defenseless and without a voice, but clearly a separate individual human life inside the mother.

If you or someone you know is considering abortion.  Please choose to save the life of the child, even if it is a hard situation. Reach out for help to God and fellow Christians.

Similarly if you or someone you know has already been involved in an abortion then you know how devastating it is emotionally for the mother. Remember that God is filled with grace.  He can forgive you if you turn toward Him with repentant heart and seek forgiveness. If you are struggling in grief, please reach out to God and to fellow Christians for help.

Let’s work together to stop abortion!

I have listed a few resource links below. If you know of Christian organizations that are effective in this area, please Contact Us  and let us know so we can add them to our site as resources.

  • Heartbeat International works to inspire and equip Christian communities worldwide to rescue women and couples from abortion through the development of neighborhood pregnancy help centers, maternity homes, and adoption services. These ministries provide life-saving help in a truly life-changing way by assisting women who are at risk for abortion with the life-affirming, practical support they need to choose life, then prepare them to parent or to place for adoption.
  • 40 Days for Life is a community-based campaign that takes a determined, peaceful approach to showing local communities the consequences of abortion in their own neighborhoods, for their own friends and families. It puts into action a desire to cooperate with God in the carrying out of His plan for the end of abortion. It draws attention to the evil of abortion through the use of a three-point program including: prayer and fasting, constant vigil, and community outreach
  • SilentNoMoreAwareness.org  is a Campaign whereby Christians make the public aware of the devastation abortion brings to women and men. The campaign seeks to expose and heal the secrecy and silence surrounding the emotional and physical pain of abortion.
  • DoveChristianCounseling.com provides online, email, or phone counseling to help those who have been involved in abortion or may be considering abortion.
  • I also encourage you to seek out a local Christian organization near you.  It is helpful to have someone you can meet with face to face who shares your Christian view on life and can help you through this difficult issue.   Jesus wants us to work together as the body of Christ to conquer abortion.

Brothers and sisters, come with me before God in prayer and repentance for our nations. Every day worldwide more than 120,000 unborn children are being killed by someone performing an abortion. That is an astonishing rate of 45 million children being killed this way each year. God put them in their mother’s wombs to grow so they could be safe and yet that is the leading cause of death in the world.

Pray too for those who have been involved in abortions already, either in performing, encouraging or forcing someone to participate, or the mother having an abortion. Their choice results in terrible grief and sadness. Pray they would come before God with repentant heart and be healed and forgiven. Pray they would forgive themselves too.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Timeless Wisdom

Proverbs contains timeless wisdom we should still be teaching our children. Do not become financially responsible for someone else’s debts. Do not be lazy. Plan ahead for your future. Even the ants do that. Do not speak with perverse mouth or speak wicked things. Do not devise evil or stir up strife. In particular, there is much emphasis on avoiding adultery.

Proverbs 6

     Parental Counsel

     1My son, if you have become surety for your neighbor,
Have given a pledge for a stranger,

2If you have been snared with the words of your mouth,
Have been caught with the words of your mouth,

3Do this then, my son, and deliver yourself;
Since you have come into the hand of your neighbor,
Go, humble yourself, and importune your neighbor.

4Give no sleep to your eyes,
Nor slumber to your eyelids;

5Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hunter’s hand
And like a bird from the hand of the fowler.

6Go to the ant, O sluggard,
Observe her ways and be wise,

7Which, having no chief,
Officer or ruler,

8Prepares her food in the summer
And gathers her provision in the harvest.

9How long will you lie down, O sluggard?
When will you arise from your sleep?

10“A little sleep, a little slumber,
A little folding of the hands to rest”—

11Your poverty will come in like a vagabond
And your need like an armed man.

12A worthless person, a wicked man,
Is the one who walks with a perverse mouth,

13Who winks with his eyes, who signals with his feet,
Who points with his fingers;

14Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
Who spreads strife.

15Therefore his calamity will come suddenly;
Instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing.

16There are six things which the LORD hates,
Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:

17Haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
And hands that shed innocent blood,

18A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that run rapidly to evil,

19A false witness who utters lies,
And one who spreads strife among brothers.

20My son, observe the commandment of your father
And do not forsake the teaching of your mother;

21Bind them continually on your heart;
Tie them around your neck.

22When you walk about, they will guide you;
When you sleep, they will watch over you;
And when you awake, they will talk to you.

23For the commandment is a lamp and the teaching is light;
And reproofs for discipline are the way of life

24To keep you from the evil woman,
From the smooth tongue of the adulteress.

25Do not desire her beauty in your heart,
Nor let her capture you with her eyelids.

26For on account of a harlot one is reduced to a loaf of bread,
And an adulteress hunts for the precious life.

27Can a man take fire in his bosom
And his clothes not be burned?

28Or can a man walk on hot coals
And his feet not be scorched?

29So is the one who goes in to his neighbor’s wife;
Whoever touches her will not go unpunished.

30Men do not despise a thief if he steals
To satisfy himself when he is hungry;

31But when he is found, he must repay sevenfold;
He must give all the substance of his house.

32The one who commits adultery with a woman is lacking sense;
He who would destroy himself does it.

33Wounds and disgrace he will find,
And his reproach will not be blotted out.

34For jealousy enrages a man,
And he will not spare in the day of vengeance.

35He will not accept any ransom,
Nor will he be satisfied though you give many gifts.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Pray For An End To Abortion

The leading cause of death around the world is not disease or famine… it is murder. Worse yet, it is legalized murder. People around the world have convinced themselves that murdering unborn children is not murder at all. The World Health Organization actually tracks the number of abortions globally but does not even count them among the death statistics they also track! People around the world ignore God’s word and scientific evidence that is widely available today in this dangerous rationalization of wrong behavior. In most cases, abortion is simply murdering a helpless life in order to make the mother’s life more comfortable or convenient or allow the father to avoid responsibility.  Yes there are extreme pressures involved… but it is still a life. We should treat the unborn no worse than the newborn babies. They should not have a lesser standard of protection and care.

Brothers and sisters, come with me before God in prayer and repentance for our nations and the world. Every day worldwide more than 120,000 unborn children are being killed by someone performing an abortion. That is an astonishing rate of 40-50 million children being killed this way each year. The numbers are astounding even compared to what we generally consider the truly terrible events in history, like Hitler’s extermination of the Jewish people in Germany during World War II. That was 6 million people in total (and it was horrible)… at the current rate of abortions the world kills more than 6 million every two months!

God put babies in their mother’s wombs to grow so they could be safe and yet that is the leading cause of death in the world. Pray that the scales would drop from people’s eyes and they would see the truth clearly and be unable to rationalize and accept abortion.

Pray too for those who have been involved in abortions already, either in performing, encouraging or forcing someone to participate, or the mother having an abortion. Theirs is a terrible grief and sadness. Pray they would come before God with repentant heart and be healed and forgiven. Pray they would forgive themselves too.

To learn more, review Crisis Help: Stop Abortion.

Forgiveness and healing is available to all thanks to Jesus Christ! May the grace and peace of Jesus Christ be with all of you.

To pray with us regarding additional prayer requests or submit a prayer request, please visit our website Prayer Requests section.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? If you die today, do you know for sure that you would be with God in heaven? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

120,000 children killed every day

Brothers and sisters, come with me before God in prayer and repentance for our nations. Every day worldwide more than 120,000 unborn children are being killed by someone performing an abortion. That is an astonishing rate of 45 million children being killed this way each year. God put them in their mother’s wombs to grow so they could be safe and yet that is the leading cause of death in the world.

Pray too for those who have been involved in abortions already, either in performing, encouraging or forcing someone to participate, or the mother having an abortion. Theirs is a terrible grief and sadness. Pray they would come before God with repentant heart and be healed and forgiven. Pray they would forgive themselves too.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Let Us March In Unity Under The Direction Of The Lord

When we as God’s people stand (or march) together consistent with God’s clear direction and with Him to lead us, we are unstoppable. It is not because of our glory or goodness, but because of His.

Joshua 1:10-18

Joshua Assumes Command

     10Then Joshua commanded the officers of the people, saying, 11“Pass through the midst of the camp and command the people, saying, ‘Prepare provisions for yourselves, for within three days you are to cross this Jordan, to go in to possess the land which the LORD your God is giving you, to possess it.’”

      12To the Reubenites and to the Gadites and to the half-tribe of Manasseh, Joshua said, 13“Remember the word which Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, saying, ‘The LORD your God gives you rest and will give you this land.’ 14“Your wives, your little ones, and your cattle shall remain in the land which Moses gave you beyond the Jordan, but you shall cross before your brothers in battle array, all your valiant warriors, and shall help them, 15until the LORD gives your brothers rest, as He gives you, and they also possess the land which the LORD your God is giving them. Then you shall return to your own land, and possess that which Moses the servant of the LORD gave you beyond the Jordan toward the sunrise.”

      16They answered Joshua, saying, “All that you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go. 17“Just as we obeyed Moses in all things, so we will obey you; only may the LORD your God be with you as He was with Moses. 18“Anyone who rebels against your command and does not obey your words in all that you command him, shall be put to death; only be strong and courageous.”

We see God has started to give parts of the promised land to several tribes to begin to occupy, but they are still to march and fight with their brothers to help them achieve victory. They are not to get complacent only because they have been provided for.

Let us reflect on this in our own lives. Many of us have tremendous comforts in this world. We have hot and cold running water, indoor toilets, heat to cook at our fingertips, plentiful food, and safe from attack. In fact, we live in some ways more luxuriously than kings of old. Let us not get complacent to just settle into our own lives and activities. Let us seek God’s direction for how He wants us to gather together as one body and what He wants us to march against and defeat. There are some things which should be obvious from scripture… abortion, the move to normalize homosexuality and transgender. These are fundamentally leading many people away from God to their own sorrow and troubles. What about the decline in the family structure? There are many broken marriages and broken families. Many families which have a wife and husband have both working so many hours that neither is really home to raise the children, who are raised by the school systems (often godless). Consider those who follow Christ and face severe persecution around the world in the Middle East or other locations. Consider God’s chosen people, Israel, who face enemies on all sides. Let us stand with them, we who are grafted in to the same vine (Romans 11).

Pray that those who follow Christ would humble themselves and pray for our nation. Pray for repentance and genuine seeking of the Lord. Pray for His Spirit to move across our nation and lead us to unity and victory to take back our own “promised land” of the United States for Him. Just because we can have rest personally, does not mean we should settle down and get comfortable and quietly live within our own small circle of influence and friends.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Do Not Imitate The Detestable Things Of The Nations

We are clearly commanded by our Creator not to imitate the detestable ways of those who do not follow YHWH. We are not to blend with pagans but to be set apart for YHWH’s use. We are to be holy.

Many seem to think this is no longer relevant, but it is very relevant still today. Study history of our most popular holidays. Easter, Christmas, Halloween, Valentines Day, and others are all based on pagan worship and pagan celebrations. The church made intentional choices to imitate and blend with these pagan practices rather than obey YHWH and remain separate from them. They convinced themselves that they knew better than YHWH and this would be a good way to help the pagans feel comfortable in the church. However this was contrary to YHWH’s instruction. People still today, when faced with the clear truth of the history rationalize it still as if they can turn something into good that YHWH declared to be bad.

We similarly have much of our society and even an increasing part of our church that accepts false religions as ok to have increasing influence in our society even when they contradict the teachings of Yeshua. Many accept homosexuality despite clear Biblical passages which consistently rebuke such behavior as sin.  Many who would say it was horrible for people thousands of years ago to sacrifice their children to Molech or other false gods, accept and normalize the murder of the unborn children by the millions all for the god of self.  Many have normalized and accepted sexual relations outside marriage covenant and divorce, again rebelling against YHWH.

Let us heed YHWH’s call and stop imitating the ways of those who do not serve Him. Let us instead follow His ways, as Yeshua taught us.

Deuteronomy 18:9-14

Spiritism Forbidden

      9“When you enter the land which the LORD your God gives you, you shall not learn to imitate the detestable things of those nations. 10“There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, 11or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. 12“For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD; and because of these detestable things the LORD your God will drive them out before you. 13“You shall be blameless before the LORD your God. 14“For those nations, which you shall dispossess, listen to those who practice witchcraft and to diviners, but as for you, the LORD your God has not allowed you to do so.

Let us be a set apart people for YHWH… a holy people living according to His ways and no other.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

You Shall Love Your Neighbor As Yourself

For those of you who read our article yesterday, the introduction to this companion article will be redundant, but we pivot to focus on the last 6 commandments in this article where we focused on the first 4 yesterday. (You Shall Love The Lord Your God With All Your Heart)

The ten commandments do not represent the sum total of God’s law or instruction for His people. However. He saw fit to focus on these 10 as He addressed the people. Much more detail was shared with the people through Moses and is available for us to study and learn in scripture. The point is, that learning and obeying these 10 commandments is not sufficient but it is a good place to start.

Some immediately want to say that this is out of date, “Didn’t Jesus say to love God and love others was all we need to do?”

Matthew 22:34-40

     34But when the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered themselves together. 35One of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, 36“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37And He said to him, “ ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ 38“This is the great and foremost commandment. 39“The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ 40“On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”

Context is important. This is not a new commandment replacing the others. Jesus lived obeying the law of Moses and quoting from it in His teaching. He explicitly said He did not come to change the law.

Matthew 5:17-19

      17“Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18“For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19“Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

What Jesus is essentially saying is that He can summarize God’s instruction down to loving God and loving one another. However, we don’t get to define what that means on our terms. All too often people today define that as accepting sin and encouraging people that they do not have to repent of sin to be in right relationship with God. God already defined what it means to love God and love one another. As a starting point, we can use the 10 commandments. The first four are about our relationship with God and the next 6 are about our relationship with each other. This is not an all inclusive list, but it is a good place to start and to a health check on our relationship with God and others. We focus today on our relationship with others.

Deuteronomy 5:16-21 (the last six commandments)

    16‘Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, that your days may be prolonged and that it may go well with you on the land which the LORD your God gives you.

      17‘You shall not murder.

      18‘You shall not commit adultery.

      19‘You shall not steal.

      20‘You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

      21‘You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, and you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field or his male servant or his female servant, his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.’

Let us first observe that loving God comes first, before loving others. This is true in the order in which the commandments were given by God and also the order in which Jesus spoke about them… love God and love one another… the order is important.

Honor your father and your mother. God has commanded us to honor our parents. In particular this is important for children when they are in the care of their parents before they grow in wisdom and relationship with the Lord. Their parents are there to protect and provide for and guide them. Even as adults we should honor father and mother. Children do not need to agree with parents in order to honor them.

You shall not murder. Too often this is mistranslated as “do not kill”. There is a difference between killing (e.g. in self defense) and murder. God’s people were often called to defend their nation in battle or to take the promised land at God’s command. God Himself provided a legal system in which some offenses are punishable by death. These are not the same as murder even though people die. On the other hand, abortion is the taking of an innocent life… it is murder. This will be tough for many to accept and internalize. However, keep in mind that Christ has died for our sins and so we can be forgiven.

You shall not commit adultery. Sadly, this should be obvious to anyone who loves their spouse, but our culture seems to be less and less concerned with calling out this sin. It is almost accepted as not ideal or flattering, but commonplace. It really should be considered a terrible offense and not lessened in significance just because so many fail in this area. It rips apart marriage, which is intended as a very close, personal bond between a man and a woman for life. It rips apart and damages families and children. It is very destructive on our society and culture.

You shall not steal. We do not love others by taking what is theirs. That is extremely selfish and hurtful.

Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Do not lie to get someone else in trouble. Speak the truth and treat people honestly and with integrity.

You shall not covet. Coveting is an everyday part of our lives. For America, and much of the world, it is the new favorite national pastime. Marketing constantly tries to make us covet what others have so we go buy it. People go deep into debt buying things they don’t need and can’t afford (e.g. houses, cars, clothes, phones, anything and everything) because they covet. People hate others and resent others because they covet. Do not let this sin sneak into your life because it is so accepted in our culture. Look for it and ask for God’s help for you to be content rather than coveting.

Think you are scoring well? Let’s take a look at how Jesus told us to judge against these commandments.

Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28

      21“You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT MURDER’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’ 22“But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.

      27“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY’; 28but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Jesus shows us how high God’s standards are. We don’t get to redefine them so they are easy just because we fail. They are the righteous standard and good reference point to measure our progress in becoming more like Christ and less like the world. It should be clear by now that we all truly need the grace of Christ’s offer of forgiveness through grace by faith based on His death on the cross for us. None of us can meet God’s holy standard.

Consider this a health check on your relationship with God and others. Do you love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength? Do you love others as yourself? Most of us would admit we have further to go to live up to this standard… and we need God’s help to get there. Ask for Him to help you love Him more. Then look to understand more about how to demonstrate love for God through your decisions and attitudes of submission and obedience to Him.

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Do you know for sure if you will go to heaven or hell when you die? Are you experiencing in your life the peace and joy of a personal relationship with our Creator and Father? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

We Must Not Normalize And Accept Sin

As we dive into Luke 16, the parable of the unjust steward there is much to explore as we have begun in previous articles. Today, we look at Luke 16:18. On the surface it appears to be almost randomly placed.

It is clear and direct… YHWH does not intend for divorce. He intends marriage to be “until death do us part”. There is no clause for “until I change my mind” or “until it gets hard”.

Luke 16:18

      18“Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband commits adultery.

For those seeking marriage or married… the message is clear… it is for keeps. Take it seriously and do not make quick or rash decisions in how you select or later treat your spouse. Invest in the relationship.

For those who have divorced… if you have not yet done so, seek the forgiveness of our gracious and merciful Lord. If you seek to remarry or have remarried… see the advice above. Seek the Lord in prayer. While we know we can be forgiven, we should never make light of divorce. It is a sin that often tears apart families in destructive ways.

However, let us explore the context of the placement of this verse in Luke 16. It follows the parable of the unjust steward. Ellicott’s Commentary summarizes it as follows:

Here, again, the explanation that has been given of the parable of the Unjust Steward, offers the only satisfactory explanation of the introduction of a topic apparently so irrelevant. The doctrine and discipline of divorce which the Pharisees taught, lowering the sacredness of the life of home, and ministering to the growing laxity of men’s morals, was precisely what was meant by the steward’s bidding the debtors take their bill and write fifty, or fourscore measures, instead of the hundred.

Our culture is still making the same mistake that the Pharisees did. We continue to downplay sin such as divorce, abortion,  homosexuality, adultery, and fornication. It is almost normalized as acceptable behavior. This approach of changing or lowering the standards that YHWH set leads to cultural and moral decay, focused on and filled with unrepentant sin. All too often we find this attitude is true even within the community and churches of those who claim to follow Christ. They may say “it is not right for me, but we should let others live this way”.

I understand how one can make a mistake, repent, and be a follower of Christ. But truly, how can one claim to follow Christ while actively advocating for sin and against what He taught? That person does not know Him. Those who know Him should not be passive, but actively engaging against normalizing sin in our culture. This includes engagement in the community, the church, and yes… government.

Take some time to pray and ask for the Spirit to speak to you about where you stand and what you should do next to get involved in the fight for Christ and His values. Then listen and obey. Praying for our country and your local community and state for revival is a great place to start. Pray for the wicked to be defeated and the righteous to rise up.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.

Woe To You Hypocrites

Yeshua does not pull punches. He does not go around behind someone’s back talking about them. He goes right to them and speaks the truth boldly when it is called for. There are other times where He takes time to build relationship first, as with the Samaritan woman at the well. In Luke 11 when He confronts the Pharisees and lawyers, He is very direct.

The warnings apply for us too. Let us heed them. Are we more concerned with managing outward visible signs of our faith or actually internalizing and living out our faith in all aspects of our lives. Do we just make a good impression on the outside, but on the inside there is wickedness or selfishness?

Luke 11:37-54

Woes upon the Pharisees

     37Now when He had spoken, a Pharisee asked Him to have lunch with him; and He went in, and reclined at the table. 38When the Pharisee saw it, he was surprised that He had not first ceremonially washed before the meal. 39But the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and of the platter; but inside of you, you are full of robbery and wickedness. 40“You foolish ones, did not He who made the outside make the inside also? 41“But give that which is within as charity, and then all things are clean for you.

      42“But woe to you Pharisees! For you pay tithe of mint and rue and every kind of garden herb, and yet disregard justice and the love of God; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others. 43“Woe to you Pharisees! For you love the chief seats in the synagogues and the respectful greetings in the market places. 44“Woe to you! For you are like concealed tombs, and the people who walk over them are unaware of it.

      45One of the lawyers said to Him in reply, “Teacher, when You say this, You insult us too.” 46But He said, “Woe to you lawyers as well! For you weigh men down with burdens hard to bear, while you yourselves will not even touch the burdens with one of your fingers. 47“Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets, and it was your fathers who killed them. 48“So you are witnesses and approve the deeds of your fathers; because it was they who killed them, and you build their tombs. 49“For this reason also the wisdom of God said, ‘I will send to them prophets and apostles, and some of them they will kill and some they will persecute, 50so that the blood of all the prophets, shed since the foundation of the world, may be charged against this generation, 51from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the house of God; yes, I tell you, it shall be charged against this generation.’ 52“Woe to you lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge; you yourselves did not enter, and you hindered those who were entering.”

      53When He left there, the scribes and the Pharisees began to be very hostile and to question Him closely on many subjects, 54plotting against Him to catch Him in something He might say.

Ask the Spirit to help you evaluate your walk with Christ. Ask Him to show you any areas where you may just be “going through the motions” or not fully committed and submitted to the Lord and His ways. We have a culture around us that constantly tries to pull us away from Christ and His ways. Even in our church community there are many who will focus on “good enough” or “better than most” or “I help people”, or “I am a good person”…  but these are insufficient standards. We are to live to God’s standard. That requires us constantly submitting our lives to Him in all areas.

We can not say be fully committed to Him by attending church weekly and then turn around and not oppose something like abortion, the murder of millions of innocent lives, just because it is accepted culturally.  We can not pay a tithe and then accept and endorse homosexuality, which God clearly condemns. Should we accept removing any reference to God in our government and schools and public spaces just because our sinful culture demands it? Are we here just to be liked and make friends with everyone while they live sinful lives rejecting Christ on their way to hell? We should not be “silent” or “private” Christians. The Lord did not hide the light but put it on a lampstand for all to see.  We should be living in the example of Christ and that includes calling out sin appropriately and, at times, directly and with boldness… even when those hearing the message will hate us for it.

Pray for boldness and the leading of the Holy Spirit in your life. When He leads, obey and follow.

Woe unto any of us who pay lip service to Christ but live in hypocrisy by not living submitted to Him.

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Have you submitted your life to Jesus Christ? Are you living today filled with the peace and joy of truly knowing and following Jesus Christ? Learn more about salvation through The Message of the Cross.