Sunday, August 9, 2009

Two Sacks of Money

Suppose there were two enormously large sacks of money on two sides of a room. One sack was filled with $1 bills. The other sack was filled with $1,000 bills. And supposing you were given a small basket, and told you had only 60 seconds to fill your basket with as much money as you could…
… which sack would
you choose to take from?!

Money is a very temporary object, as it is here one day and gone the next. Jail cells are filled with people who once had great wealth. Life, also, is short. The Scriptures liken it unto a vapor, a flower, and a single day. So, friend, which would be the
wiser use of our ‘day’ on earth? To gather up as much as we can from the low-dollar self-serving worldly sack, or to reach into God’s Will, and attain that which will last all eternity!?

That said, allow me to act as your CPA (
Certified Public Accountant) and let’s review your assets in this matter. In short, “How successful are you at leading souls to Jesus?!” Take a piece of paper and write down how many years it has been since you first found Christ. Now, below that number, please write down the total number of people who have placed their trust and hope for Heaven in Christ because of your witnessing/testimony.
If the top number is larger than the bottom number… you need what I am about to say. If the bottom number is much larger than the top, you already know what I am about to say.

Here’s the secret to becoming a fruitful Christian:
This charge I commit unto thee, son Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that thou by them mightiest war a good warfare; Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck:” -- I Timothy 1:18-19

Young Timothy had a Greek, unsaved father. His mother was a Christian, and took great care to teach her child, Timothy, the scriptures. Paul reminds Timothy, (
In the book aptly named 1 Timothy.) That God gives us TWO UNIQUE WEAPONS to being an effective Christian witness.

Faith. Without FAITH it is impossible to please God. We like to SAY we have faith, but in truth… it takes faith the size of a mustard seed to move a mountain. Have you re-arranged any mountainous terrain lately? No? Since you lack even the most rudimentary level of terraforming, mayhaps your faith is SMALLER than even a grain of mustard seed! LOL!

Actually, your problem may very well lie in the book of James.
Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew my thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith BY my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils ALSO believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?” -- James 2:17-20 [emphasis added]

Sadly, many Christians believe that since they are saved, there is no need to live a separated life. Their THEOLOGY (
How they view God and His Commandments/Laws) are based on their MORALITY (Their comfortable and preferred lifestyle.) Paul reminds Timothy that the scriptures taught to him in his childhood would be the ‘ammo’ for fighting a good warfare. Christian friend, if you do not spend time thinking on scriptures, and meditating upon God’s precepts, you are trying to fight a war with no ammo… and those wars tend to be short ones!

Your faith becomes as DEAD in the eyes of those you are trying to witness to if it contains no works. God DOES see the heart, but man is stuck seeing the OUTSIDE. What are the works that establish our faith in man’s eyes? Knowing and keeping God’s precepts and principles! Forgiveness. Love thy neighbor. Love thine enemies. Bless them that curse you. Go the second mile. Care for the widows and fatherless. Turn the other cheek.
… you KNOW most of them. But KNOWING and DOING are two very different things. It only takes faith to trust Christ as Savior, and be saved! But it takes faith + works to convince others.

A Good Conscience. Let’s build a sling shot. (You remember those from childhood, right?) We must find a ‘Y’ shaped stick, and then we need a pebble. And what else….!? Oh! And we must not forget the thing that sends the pebble flying! What works best for that? STRING? Tape? How about a USB cable?!
No. A pebble will not go far without proper energy transfer method. (
Throwing always works.) Rubber bands will work, yes, but a piece of bungee cord is the absolute BEST!

A Christian armed with a Good Conscience is like using an elastic band to launch a pebble! It is what gives the words you say ‘Oomph!’ ...

The younger you are, the easier it is to maintain a clear conscience! When you make a huge blunder, or commit a terrible sin, you are in a wonderful position to use the Grace that God gives you to ask forgiveness and keep your slate clean with both God and man.
However, the older you get, the
harder this becomes. Especially if we have neglected the necessary repairs from our youth. Why is it so hard to go to those we have wronged and apologized? No excuses. No cop-outs. No placing or sharing the blame.
Guilt is probably the all time GREATEST preventer of Christianity! It nullifies our words, and causes them to be meaningless and doubtful.

Foolish people attempt to balance their guilt with blame. Why is it that our actions and attitudes are always someone else’s fault? Why is it that the words we say in anger, or our actions-in-response are always someone else’s fault? WHY? Because we have guilt, and look to balance that guilt with blame. But to do this brings on depression, anger, bitterness towards self and others, discouragement, disorientation, and devastation.

A Wise Christian understands that it is better to balance GUILT with FORGIVENESS! If you mess up… when you fall… when you hurt others… when you lose your temper… when you fail to act in accordance to God’s Wise and True Preciepts… it is BETTER to humble yourself and ask for forgiveness.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrigheousness.” – I John 1:9

Keep things level and
clean between God and Man. Go to those you have wronged in your past. Make those slates CLEAN. Apologize to those you have offended. Make restitution to those you have stolen from or cheated. Correct with honesty those to whom you have lied. Make amends with those whom you have fought with. Let everyone know that you are trying your best to be a TRUE Christian with a CLEAN conscience. While some may choose NOT to forgive you, at least God will know that you have honestly and truly tried.
And keep the slate clean by granting mercy and forgiveness to those who have wronged you.

As Christians, we are responsible for every thought we dwell on. (
II Corinthians 10:5); every word we say (Matthew 12:36); every deed we do (II Corinthians 5:10); every attitude we display (I Peter 3:10); and every motive which drives our actions (Jeremiah 17:10)!!!

That’s BASIC human responsibility! How can we expect to be a happy, effective Christian if we choose to neglect our basic responsibilities and live a slave to the world’s philosophies!

Chose to grab from the sack of eternal treasures… Things you will be able to present to the Father on that judgment day. Live for HIM because He, alone, is
Worthy. Live by FAITH… constantly attentive to God’s Word. And live by a Clean Conscience… faithful to those God has placed around you.

I part with this advice: “
And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and good works.” – Hebrews 10:24 Christ died for others... can we not live for others?

1 Comments & Reactions here:

Tammy said...

This is so true. Asking forgiveness will strengthen a relationship. Sometimes I think pride gets in the way and people do not want to humble themselves. "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory;but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves."