Welcome to my blog! I hope to be a resource to help you in your walk with God. Now more than ever we need to get back to the basic fundamentals of moral living and take a stand for what is right and truthful with God as our ultimate authority. His Word is reliable and preserved and can be trusted, so that is the basis for my advice and teaching. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or topics you would like me to cover. I look forward to sharing what God has placed on my heart. See my website at http://www.dawnfoss.tateauthor.com and http://www.dawnfoss.com/ for books and music I have written that will enrich your life!
Ezekiel 22:30: "And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none." Let's stand in the gap together!
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
What Value does the Law of the Bible have?
My Pastor, Dr. Chris Atkinson, preached a great message at Meriden Hills Baptist Church www.meridenhillsbaptist.org this past Sunday, and I wanted to share a few thoughts that really stood out to me.
One thought made a lot of sense to me. "To the ugly man every mirror is an enemy. The problem is not with the mirror, but with the man." The law of God is likened unto a mirror. If we don't look in the mirror, we don't have the knowledge to know if anything is wrong with our appearance. So it's true that if we don't look at the law of God, we have no idea we are doing wrong. Romans 7:7: "What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet."
It is our teacher, and that is a good thing. Galatians 3:24: "Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith." People who have the attitude (and we all battle this at times, including me!), "Don't tell me what to do!" or "That might be fine for you, but I'll do what I want, thank you very much" have a rebellion in them, and are unwilling to take an honest look at their hearts and souls and see if anything is amiss. We have to soften ourselves, even as Christians, to be open to the truth and ask the Holy Spirit to help us forsake rotten sin and cling to the delicious fruits of the Spirit, like love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance. "Against such there is no law" (Gal. 5:22-23).
We should take instruction, and love righteousness, or things that are right and good. We each have a contaminated heart that loves things that are not good for us. When we become a Christian, we have the new nature (good) and still have our old nature (bad), and these war against each other. It's like having two alpha male dogs inside of us, each battling for power. Which one will win? The one you feed the most. If you starve the old nature and not give into its lusts and desires, and instead feed the good nature by watching good movies, playing good games, eating healthy, avoiding harmful substances, going to church, reading the Bible, praying, etc. then the good nature will win and you will be at spiritual peace.
I think about this with losing weight. I have a real rebellion in my heart against anyone telling me what to eat or how to exercise. But I do know how to do right in this area; I just don't always do it. I want to do right, but sometimes feel like the things I want to do I don't do, and the things I don't want to do I do. It sounds just like what the Apostle Paul said in Romans 7:15: "For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I."
We are all born with a sin nature. Romans 7:16-21:
16 "If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me."
But don't despair! While sin deceives, defiles, and destroys you (Rom. 7:11: "For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me."), when we turn to Christ and receive the Holy Spirit, we will be guided into truth and convicted when we are doing wrong (John 16:13: "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth:").
It is our choice which nature we feed. Until we become a Christian, we only have the old sinful nature, so this battle does not exist. If you don't feel guilty or wrong when you do wrong according to the standard of the Word of God, then you are not saved, you are not a Christian, and your father is still the Devil. Only when you trust Jesus Christ as your Savior by praying and asking Him to save you from your sin does your family change, and you are adopted into God's family, and now God the Father is your heavenly father. Until then, you do not belong to Him.
It's interesting how natural gas has no odor or color. It is difficult to detect a leak, but if a leak is present and a spark occurs, even with just turning on a light switch, it can lead to a deadly explosion. Now they are required to put a foul odor like rotten eggs in the gas so we can detect a leak. So it is without the Holy Spirit and the law (the Word of God); we would have no idea that we are sinning except it is revealed to us.
So rather than rebel against the law or detest it, we should be thankful that it is there to show us where we fall short of perfection so we can clean ourselves up as Christians (and get saved if not a Christian yet) with the help of the Holy Spirit. Just like a mirror, a forewarning of something dangerous to come like an explosion from a gas leak, or a good teacher, the law is helpful to us and can lead us to see our sinful nature so we can see our need for our Saviour and how to become more like Christ. As the Apostle Paul put it in Romans 7:24-25a: "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord."