Tuesday October 1, 2019
Christianity is meant to be lived, not just spoken.
1JO 3:16 We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
1JO 3:17 But whoever has the world's goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?
1JO 3:18 Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.
For something to act spontaneously, it must be alive, in existence, itself, long before its need.
The love of God, and every virtue of God, must exist, coiled and ready, within the believer; living, fermenting, poised, and real, thriving in divine power and will to spontaneously act when called into action by any and every circumstance. Therefore, divine truth flowing through the heart of the believer must do so when it is not called upon. We can never say, “Ah, now is the time for me, for selfishness, for my sin, for my life, for no one is calling upon me.”
That we must not do. Can we imagine Christ doing that?
Let’s review the section of Luke’s gospel we began last time.
LUK 11:33 "No one, after lighting a lamp, puts it away in a cellar, nor under a peck-measure, but on the lampstand, in order that those who enter may see the light.
LUK 11:34 "The lamp of your body is your eye; when your eye is clear, your whole body also is full of light; but when it is bad, your body also is full of darkness.
LUK 11:35 "Then watch out that the light in you may not be darkness.
LUK 11:36 "If therefore your whole body is full of light, with no dark part in it, it shall be wholly illumined, as when the lamp illumines you with its rays."
“With no dark part in it,” [Greek: meros - a part or a portion] means an inner man undefiled and uncontaminated. It is one of our greatest dangers that we self-deceive on that question.
LUK 11:37 Now when He had spoken, a Pharisee asked Him to have lunch with him; and He went in, and reclined at the table.
LUK 11:38 And when the Pharisee saw it, he was surprised that He had not first ceremonially washed before the meal.
LUK 11:39 But 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.
There are several instances in the gospels where Pharisees invite Jesus to lunch. Why they kept asking Jesus to lunch is beyond me.
LUK 11:40 "You foolish ones, did not He who made the outside make the inside also?
LUK 11:41 "But give that which is within as charity [alms], and then all things are clean for you.
Jesus commands the unbeliever in the way of His character.
It is not bullying or judging, but revealing Himself through His character. There is a way that is right and the God-Man embodies it. One cannot separate the person of God from the character of God. I could not be works for salvation that Christ is commanding of this Pharisee. It is a revelation of the way of God, like the Mosaic Law is a revelation of God’s goodness and righteousness. Keeping the Law wouldn’t save a man any more than giving to the poor, but it would reveal something about the man to the man.
LUK 12:35 "Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps alight.
LUK 12:36 "And be like men who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks.
LUK 12:37 "Blessed are those slaves whom the master shall find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them.
You and I are to evaluate our own selves in light of what our Lord says here. I will be sure to point out for all of us:
If there is anything hindering your intake of God’s word, you’re convinced you’re too busy, you didn’t like the subject, you had other things to do, etc. it will still be required of you. There are no excuses.
LUK 12:38 "Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves.
LUK 12:39 "And be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have allowed his house to be broken into.
LUK 12:40 "You too, be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour that you do not expect."
In the context of His address, I think it is clear that Jesus is not goading us to predict the time of the Rapture. He is telling us to live as if He is returning in the next hour. We must always be living His life, having His love and virtue simmering within us at every hour, no matter if it is called upon in that hour or not.
Peter again helps us. “Is this for us or everyone else? Who is this addressed to?”
LUK 12:41And Peter said, "Lord, are You addressing this parable to us, or to everyone else as well?"
Jesus answers this by continuing the parable - it is for all men. Those who did not believe the Master will be cut to pieces. Those who believe will be ready for Him, and those who knew He was coming but did not get ready will receive many lashes. No need to overly debate the identity of the subjects of the parable. He who has ears, let him hear.
God says to go ‘there’ and promises that in seeking I will find.