Come now [and pay attention to this], you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and carry on our business and make a profit.”
Yet you do not know [the least thing] about what may happen in your life tomorrow. [What is secure in your life?] You are merely a vapor [like a puff of smoke or a wisp of steam from a cooking pot] that is visible for a little while and then vanishes [into thin air]. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and we will do this or that.”
But as it is, you boast [vainly] in your pretension and arrogance. All such boasting is evil. So any person who knows what is right to do but does not do it, to him it is sin.James 4:13-17 AMP
Our own desires tempt us to forget who we are in Christ. Jesus was tempted in every way as we are yet did not sin. How did He do it? He simply never forgot His true identity, the Son of God.
As a Son, He submitted completely to the will of The Father. There were occasions in His earthly life where His flesh did not want to go along with God’s plan, but He prayed, “Not my will, but Thine be done.”
That is where God is leading us in these final hours. The Bride will become holy and blameless, without spot or wrinkle. The Church will conform to God’s will, led by the Holy Spirit of God into unity of heart, purpose and action.
Without the Spirit, unity is impossible. Without obedience to God’s direction, disobedience will rule the day. We are coming into a time of holy devotion to God. The truth has never changed, but the application has been veiled until the appointed time.
How does the devil tempt us? With lies. Did God really say? Yes, God really did say and if He said it, it’s absolutely true. Don’t believe me? It is written.
How does the world distract us? With fruitless activity that never ends. We can get so busy doing stuff that doesn’t matter that we forget our purpose.
How does our flesh deceive us? Its passionate cries to be fulfilled lead us down the path of self-destruction. There is a way that appears right to man, but its end is only death.
Clearly the devil, the world and our flesh want nothing to do with submitting to and obeying God’s instructions. Yet, His way is the only way to eternal life. Salvation is free but discipleship will cost you everything. But really, are you losing anything?
Only the illusion of control, independence and autonomy. That bitter desire to exalt self as an idol to the exclusion of belonging to something greater. If there is an original sin in America, it is independence. It’s pride in doing it my way. In the end, it is foolishness and death.
A day of reckoning approaches. Will you be counted among the sheep who recognize the voice of their Shepherd? Or will you be among the stiff-necked goats who only consume and produce nothing of value?
It’s easy to forget. That’s why we must remind ourselves daily of who God is and who we are in relationship to Him. He is our Heavenly Father. We are His children. Good children obey The Father. Rebellious children do not inherit the blessing. Not because of a desire to punish them, but because they refuse to come into the house that love built.
Let us never forget to honor God as Lord and King. May we be found faithful on that final day. May we submit to His Lordship day by day. In the Name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.