Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Thought of the Day !!

For I have told you often before, and I say it again with tears in my eyes, that there are many whose conduct shows they are really enemies of the cross of Christ.  They are headed for destruction.  Their god is their appetite, they brag about shameful things, and they think only about this life here on earth. – Philippians 3:18-19 (NLT)

As Paul is writing to Christians in Philippi he is in tears.  It hurts to think how those he has preached the good news to and are calling themselves believers have gone so wrong.  Their god is their appetite, which means not only food but anything they desire for themselves.  It means that instead of Jesus and His ways ruling their lives, their own desires come first.  How many Christians today might fall into this category of proclaiming Jesus as Lord and denying that claim by living their lives for themselves?

Paul also says that these Philippian "believers" brag about shameful things.  You would think that Christians today would try not to do shameful things.  And when they do them, you would think they would not share them with their pastor, unless maybe in a moment of confession and guidance.  But you might be surprised how many church members have come to me over my 16 years of ministry and in what can only be deemed as bragging, joyfully told me the shameful things that they've done.  How do you think God feels when we're more proud of a drunken excursion than a time when we experienced Him?

Lastly, Paul says that they think only about this life here on earth.  As faithful followers of Jesus how can we live as though this world and what it has to offer us is all there is?  Many live as though their citizenship is here on earth, which means that they must get as much out of it as they can, and sometimes to the detriment of others.  Paul continues in the next couple verses to share that we are to live as citizens of Heaven, not this world.  This means living by the standards Jesus set forth so that we, as well as those around us, can found joy and peace.  It means living as though what we have now are gifts from God that are but cheap imitations compared to what we will have one day.  It means loving God with all our hearts and our neighbors as ourselves.  

In the love of Christ,



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