A Tragedy in the Making
I witnessed such a scenario in the making on a plane last week. I watched a mother preparing her son to be shot.
I was sitting behind her and her son, who may have been seven years old. He was playing on his digital tablet. The flight attendant announced that all electronic devices should be turned off for take off. He didn’t turn it off. The mother didn’t require it. As the flight attendant walked by, she said he needed to turn it off and kept moving. He didn’t do it. The mother didn’t require it.
One last time, the flight attendant stood over them and said that the boy would need to give the device to his mother. He turned it off. When the flight attendant took her seat, the boy turned his device back on, and kept it on through the take off. The mother did nothing. I thought to myself, she is training him to be shot by police.
… Continue reading Here.
“Prayer is never an acceptable substitute for obedience.
The sovereign Lord accepts no offering from His creatures
that is not accompanied by obedience.
To pray for revival while ignoring or actually flouting the plain
precept laid down in the Scriptures is to waste a lot of words and
get nothing for our trouble.”
A.W. Tozer, Of God and Men, p. 52.
I’m a mean moma. Since my oldest was around three or four years old I have always had my children write “Thank You” notes for gifts and for other acts of kindness. Now anyone that knows me would agree that I’m not “Mrs. Manners”, although I do know which fork to use. 🙂 However, I have always felt that writing thank you notes for a kindness was a good thing to do.
Have you ever sent someone a gift and never heard back from them? The kind of thing where you wonder if they even got it. Or worse got it and hated it.
Granted most of us have had it drilled into our heads that we should write “Thank You” notes for graduation gifts, wedding gifts and baby shower gifts. But many very rarely write a “Thank You” note beyond those events. How do I know that? Because of the response my children have gotten from others when they have written “Thank You” notes. It seems writing just a simple note to express thankfulness for a kindness is becoming unheard of in the younger generations.
A “Thank You” note:
- Maybe simple or elaborate.
- Expresses appreciation to the giver.
- They don’t have to be perfect. The thought does count. Everyone loves the “baby’s” backwards letters.
- They in no way repay the giver in tangible value.
- They aren’t written in order to get more gifts from the giver.
So am I just trying to make you feel guilty for not having written “Thank You” notes for the Christmas presents and meals?
But when thinking about why we should do good works for the Lord “Thank You” notes is what I thought of. See we are called to do good works and our obedience to Christ is part of our good works.
Does doing good and obeying earn us our Salvation?
No, of course not.
Does doing good and obeying repay the Lord for His sacrifice for us?
No, by no means.
Our doing good works and obeying all that the Lord has commanded is just our “Thank You” note to the Lord for all He has done for us. Our good works bring Glory to the Lord for all He has done for us.
Luke 6:46 (ESV) “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you?
Ephesians 2:10 (ESV) For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
James 2:18 (ESV) But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
John 15:8 (ESV) By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.
Matthew 5:16 (ESV) In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Are you behind in your “Thank You” notes to the Lord?
A church that we are familiar with had this in their bulletin in a discussion about tithing:
Some people who are not tithing wonder if they can “work their way up to a tithe” by increasing their giving some each year until they reach 10%. This question is not addressed in the Bible because tithing is an act of obedience, and you cannot be partially obedient or work your way into obedience. There is no other issue of obedience in which we would suggest that we would gradually become obedient.
What is your reaction to a statement like that?
Think about this in relation to things other than tithes.
Is this an accurate statement?
What does the Bible say about obedience?
Whom does Jesus call His Friends?
Jesus calls Lazarus His friend.
John 11:11 After saying these things, he said to them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I go to awaken him.” ESV
Abraham was called God’s friend.
James 2:23 Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. ESV
We are the friends of Jesus if we are obedient to His commands.
13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lays down his life for his friends.
14 You are my friends if you do what I command you.
15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. ESV
Thus Jesus was not the friend of those in disobedience. Jesus was accused of being the friend of sinners, gluttons, and drunkards by the Pharisees. Although all people are sinners only repentant, obedient sinners are Jesus’ friend. Jesus did associate with with unrepentant sinners but they were not His friends.
Notice Jesus was also accused of being a glutton and a drunkard by the Pharisees.
Matthew 11:19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is justified by her deeds.” ESV
Luke 7:34 The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look at him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ ESV
Friendship with the world is condemned because then you become an enemy of God.
James 4:4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. ESV
17 Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.
18 For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ.
19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. ESV
What are we to do when another is an enemy of Jesus. We are to pray for them, love them and share the truth of the gospel with them.
Luke 6:34 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. ESV
An unbeliever is an “enemy of God” so were we until God called us. We show unbelievers the same Mercy and Grace the Lord showed to us in His calling us.
10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.
11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. ESV