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Archive for the ‘SERVING’ Category


KJV and NKJV Scripture

– Do all things without murmurings and disputings, – Philippians 2:14

– Use hospitality to one another without grudging. – 1 Peter 4:9

Complaining is a joy and time stealer.  It can make a soul feel weary and worn-out if it persists day in and day out (Job 10:1). it is also a sin very displeasing to our Father as all transgressions against His truth do, It keeps one on destruction’s broad road (Numbers 11:1, Matthew 7:13) and off the straight and narrow avenue to heaven’s gate (Matthew 7:14). Why?

It gives a place for the devil (Ephesians 4:27), to use his devices designed to first gain an advantage over (2 Corinthians 2:11), then slowly devour and destroy souls given to grudging and griping.  One cannot grow in grace this way.  It is how Satan leads people away in the err of the wicked (2 Peter 3:17-18), sometimes all the way to shipwrecked faiths (1 Timothy 1:19).

Grousing and grumbling breed ungodly impatience (Hebrews 10:36, Revelation 14:12), irritation, and annoyance over the littlest interruptions, unexpected delays, having to wait anywhere, and other perceived nuisances keeping life from being “just right” for long. Something’s always wrong,  It is too hot, too cold, too fast, too slow – making everything constantly so-so.

Habitual complainers play the blame game throughout their life.  It is an existence of passing the buck that started in the Garden of Eden – and hasn’t topped for some since (Genesis 3:9-13).  If you should mention any difficulty or problem they’re facing, the fault is never with them.  It is easier to point the finger of blame outwards or upwards than back at themselves.

One reason why hell and destruction will never be full is because complainers are never truly satisfied with anything or anyone (Proverbs 27:20).  They cannot be content in whatever state they are in for too long (Philippians 4:11) as their eyes are always scanning the nearest horizon.  Ever searching for something to grouse about, or someone to do the same thing with.

Why would God allow souls to gain heaven, if all they did was complained on earth?  They’d be so unhappy forever.  Halos would always be a bit too loose or too tight, angelic robes would never fit quite right, and off-key harps would cause day and night harping.  All the while, they would be whining about why they had to be God’s servant for an eternity (Revelation 22:3).

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KJV and NKJV Scripture

– We are unprofitable servants.  We have done that which was our duty to do. – Luke 17:10

– And turn ye not aside; for then should ye go after vain things which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain. – 1 Samuel 12:21

Most people who have jobs probably like and enjoy receiving small tokens of appreciation from time to time for their good work.  Every now and then, it is also nice to receive some raises, bonuses, and an occasional promotion.  Otherwise, who would ever want to keep working for any company that never noticed the efforts of those who worked for them?

Being unappreciated can cause some to start seeking new jobs elsewhere – maybe a different place where supervisors are known to openly show their gratitude for work well done on a regular basis.  Efforts usually feel much more worthwhile when tangible rewards are given.  However, such desires in any Christian doing work for God reveal a dangerous and worldly mind.  

A mind where believers expect recognition, love gifts, and follow after earthly reward or profit for all they do in the Lord’s name.  It is no different now than it was back in Biblical days (Hosea 9:1, Isaiah 1:23, Malachi 3:14).  However, we don’t do a little bit of work for God, then sit back and wait for blessings and rewards before going out to work some more (Luke 17:7-10).

All of the work we do for God is our reward.  It is not a means to get one.  It is reckoned of debt, not grace (Romans 4:4).  We’re to do our duty as commanded. Not for what we may think is due back in return – but for what God gave us at the Cross.  Christ paid the ultimate price.  Therefore, He doesn’t owe us a thing in life.  We are the ones who owe Him everything.

We are God’s unprofitable servants on this earth – not profitable employees.  The King is served by the field. It is not the other way around (Ecclesiastes 5:9).  We did not bring anything into this world, and it is certain we cannot carry anything out (1 Timothy 6:7).  All the earthly blessings we may think God is bestowing upon us in our life – will be left behind when we die.

God tells us to take heed if we depart from Him and turn aside after Satan in unbelief (Hebrews 3:12-19, 1 Timothy 5:15).  Part of unbelief is if we run greedily after the error of Baal (Jude 1:11).  Baal is where we get Beelzebub (2 Kings 1:6).  Satan is worshipped and served more if we think we should be served with profit from God.  It makes Him a liar (Romans 1:25).

This is holding the truth in unrighteousness, and it is having a foolish heart (Romans 1:18-21).  Such belief says He should be thanking and giving us His glory for being such good Christians (Mark 10:18) – falling all over us with worldly favor and blessings (Romans 2:11).  This is a lack of understanding.  It is seeking earthly good; but not seeking God (Romans 3:11-12).

A worldly mind equates work with wages.  Good and steadily dedicated work over time may be rewarded with a raise.  However, if we’ve been born again of the Spirit (John 3:5), we have been given Christ’s mind (1 Corinthians 2:16).  It says to humbly obey God until death just as Jesus did (Philippians 2:8) – without earthly profit or gain on the way (Jude 1:11).

God requires us to have an unwavering walk with His Son down heaven’s narrow path (Matthew 7:14).  If we ever anticipate any worldly presents and blessings from Him for work we do, we don’t have the steadfast faith needed to be made partakers of Jesus at the end (Hebrews 3:14).  What we have is a desire for steady profit; which actually creates a stop-and-go walk.

We’re saying to Him we will obey and do our duty a short while – then stop and collect our reward first before we proceed any further (Luke 17:7-10).  It is telling Him we still have affections focused on fleeting worldly things as a reason to stay faithful; and not on things above (Colossians 3:2).  We are still laying up treasures for ourselves on earth (Matthew 6:19-20).

We are plainly letting Him know we are still seeking a better country here; and not willing to wait with the confidence and patience required for a better country awaiting in heaven (Hebrews 10:35-36, 11:13-15). However, what does it matter if we should gain a whole world of profit during our brief life (James 4:14) – if we lose our soul in the end (Mark 8:36)?

 

 

 

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(KJV and NKJV Scripture)

– And their eyes were opened, and Jesus straightly charged them, saying “See that no man knows it.” – Matthew 9:30

– Don’t worry when you are not recognized, but strive to be worthy of recognition. – Abraham Lincoln

Would we ever do anything in life – if people never knew we did anything?  What would be the point of living?  What would we really do at our jobs if we couldn’t put it on a resume later?  Would we ever participate in competitive sports where nobody won championships – and no one received awards and trophies?  What would politicians do – if they knew it would never be put on the nightly news?

What’s the harm if we blow our own horns now and then?  Do we sometimes pretend it isn’t a big deal if nobody seems to notice us much?  Does it really not bother us if life starts to feel like we are blending in with the greenery and scenery, as alluded to in “Take the Long Way Home” by Supertramp?”  If we really did live a life of relative obscurity, what might our obituary look like?

Perhaps something similar to this: “John Doe, 85, passed away yesterday.  He never did much.  He will not be missed.”  However, this certain John Doe did thousands of good things in his life.  Although local library books could have been filled by them, pursuing personal praise and public notice wasn’t his earthly purpose.  Just like Jesus, whose deeds would have filled a few more books (John 21:25).

During a Passover feast, some of those around Jesus could not understand why he tried to avoid personal attention as much as possible.  Some of them said to Christ, “Depart, and go into Judea, so your disciples may also see the works you do.  For there is no man who does anything in secret, while he himself seeks to be known openly.  If you do these things, show yourself to the world (John 7:2-4).”

There are similar scenes throughout the four gospels where Christ charged the disciples to keep quiet about things he did, what he said … even about who he was. For example, when Jesus was on the road with them to Caesarea Philippi, he asked, “Whom do men say I am?”  After answers such as John the Baptist and Elijah – Christ charged them they should tell no man of who he was (Mark 8:27-30).

Was Jesus denying he was God’s Son?  In 1901, theologian William Wrede labeled Christ’s seeming quest for confidentiality the “Messianic Secret.” However, Jesus was not trying to keep a secret.  He just did not want to receive the reverence if his identity was revealed.  It did not belong to him. Christ was simply seeking God’s glory.  Speaking about himself wasn’t the way to do it (John 7:18).

The same goes for us.  Job learned a very painful lesson in humility because of his huge “I” problem (Job 1:11-19, Job 29:14-25).  Tooting our own Christian trumpets is not truth.  It tarnishes God’s glory by putting a varnish on ours.  Whatever glory we may be seeking for ourselves in doing any work for the Lord – is not His glory (Proverbs 25:27).  It is glorying in everything but the Cross (Galatians 6:14).

Pure and undefiled religion in God’s eyes – is the kind unspotted from this world (James 1:27).  It is when we work quietly and privately away from the public spotlight.  Serving all others with the unfeigned and fervent love God commands (1 Peter 1:22) – without fawning all over ourselves.  Without sounding the attention alarm by having to publish our works in the church bulletin – or post them on Facebook.

Christianity is not a contest.  We are to prove our own work, so any rejoicing will be in ourselves (Galatians 6:4).  We are not wise if we compare and measure ourselves with what other believers are doing (2 Corinthians 10:12).  Showcasing is often created when we do this.  Contention between Christians and churches follows.  Confusion, pride, and evil works ensue (Proverbs 13:10, James 3:16),

Until the day of Christ’s return – we are to have faith to ourselves (Romans 14:22).  We are to pray in private and fast secretly (Matthew 6:5-6, Matthew 6:18).  We are to let others who are strangers praise us – not our own mouths or lips (Proverbs 27:2). All Jesus did on earth was to go about His Father’s business.  Teaching the Word of truth, without having to boast about it.  The same goes for us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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(KJV and NKJV Scripture)

– You cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of the devils … you cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils. – 1 Corinthians 10:21.

– Heaven cannot brook two suns – nor earth two masters. – Alexander the Great

Just as Jesus said, if we are not with him – we are against him (Matthew 12:30).  Part-time belief is part-time deceit.  Part-time faith in God is fake and feigned.  Christians just cannot straddle the fence between the Word and the world.  We can certainly try, but that usually makes for a very bumpy ride as believers.  Back and forth we go, day in and day out. One master one morning – another master the next.

It makes it difficult to walk side by side with God, and abide in total agreement with His ways (Amos 3:3, John 15:4-7) – if we should keep getting sidetracked by worldly ones (James 4:4).  Wavering between the Word and world is sure to keep us on an uneven keel spiritually.  There is no ballast for our belief.  This makes it easy to get tossed to and fro, and for faith to shipwreck (Ephesians 4:14, 1 Timothy 1:19).

Choosing who to follow is not a once-and done act.  It is a daily decision we make (Joshua 24:15).  Simon Peter was ready to go to prison – and to death with Jesus (Luke 22:33).  Jesus already knew Simon Peter would deny him three times that very same day (Luke 22:34).  Therefore, we have to deny self each sunrise (Luke 9:23).  If we should deny our Saviour – we’re saying good-bye to God and welcoming Satan.

Without donning the whole armor of God each day, we will be easy targets for the devil’s fiery darts of deception – often disguised as very bright, but blinding lights  (Ephesians 6:13-16, 2 Corinthians 4:4).  Just like he did with Jesus, Satan says “Serve me and worship me.  If you do, power, glory, and the whole world can be yours (Luke 4:5-7).”  We can do that, and still lose our souls in the end (Mark 8:36).

We cannot eat from God’s table of truth and faith – and feast at Satan’s seductive spread of falsehoods at the same time (lead verse, John 8:44).  He wants us devour whatever he sets before us to eat – so he can end up devouring us all like a lion (1 Peter 5:8-9). Therefore, we cannot serve two masters.  If we do, we will love one and hate the other, depending on what our desires are on any given day (Luke 16:13).

 

 

 

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(NKJV and KJV Scripture)

– And after all that is come upon us for our evil deeds, and for our great trespass; seeing God has punished us less than we deserve – and has given us such great deliverance as this. – Ezra 9:13

– “Does he thank the servant because he did the things that were commanded?  I think not.  So likewise you, when you shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say ‘We are unprofitable servants – we have done that which is our duty to do’.” – Luke 17:9-10

The word “deserve” is  found just twice in the KJV; once above in Ezra – and once in Job 11:6, where we find God exacts less of us than our iniquities deserve. Neither verse has anything to do with anyone getting good things from God.  Instead, they involve Him withholding forms of discipline or correction we do deserve; and should receive for sinning – even as believers (1 John 1:8-10).

However, if God did punish us each time we transgressed against Him – imagine how painful our lives could really be.  If our every act of disobedience received a just recompense of reward, we might not love Him as much as we may proclaim.  Who among us would be able to stand before Him until salvation – if He caused grief every time we sin (Ezra 9:15, Hebrews 2:2-3)?

Doing something worthy of reward or punishment – or showing such qualities – is said to be deserving. We may deserve a raise in our careers for the work we do – or we might receive a sentence to die if we ever intentionally killed someone.  It would be deserved based on the evidence.  Regardless, we can spend our lives deciding what we deserve and don’t (usually good, not bad) – while someone else decides otherwise; including God.

Receiving worldly things in our favor can be called merit.  We labored hard and did good deeds – and we deserved them, right?  However, if we receive bothersome or burdensome trials we think are undeserved, we can call them mistakes.  But – God would never cause such troubles to us as His chosen, would He (Jeremiah 2:35, Jeremiah 5:12, Jeremiah 8:6, Colossians 3:5-6)?

Well, God does not operate on a worldly merit and mistake system – but on His Word’s basis of grace and mercy.  These are two forms of unmerited and undeserved favor with opposite meanings.  God’s grace kept Lot from Sodom and Gomorrah‘s total destruction – so His mercy would be magnified in saving Lot’s life … yet Lot hadn’t done a thing to merit either (Genesis 19:19,24).

Grace is free and unmerited favor.  It’s unearned – and gives us something we do not deserve.  It’s how God will save us – but His grace won’t be brought to us until Christ returns (Ephesians 2:8, 1 Peter 1:13). Until then, we get up every day because of God’s long-suffering towards us (2 Peter 3:9).  It’s because of His abundant mercies we are not fully consumed each morning (Lamentations 3:22, 1 Peter 1:3).

Mercy is also free and unmerited favor – but it keeps us from something we do deserve, such as sin’s wages (Romans 6:23).  However, our modern world of merchandise may have many thinking otherwise.   If we keep buying products, flying in planes, or even just try something out – we deserve to get back something extra often touted as free – but which usually comes with a prior price tag.

This type of “rewards for everything” culture seems to exist almost everywhere today in modern society. It was fueled largely at first by the advertising world. It started by telling people – and selling them on the point they deserved something back by spending dollars.  Purchases would earn reward points to redeem later – or what was the point of buying anything?

Christians are not immune from this message of deserving for doing almost anything.  If we invest/spend time, money, or love in the world – a mindset can be that someone should give us back what’s been earned according to prior expectations. Unskilled and unlearned Christians in the Word are susceptible to this.  They can unconditionally equate belief to deserved blessings – often to destruction (Hebrews 5:13-14, 2 Peter 3:16).

Even the learned don’t always learn.  In Micah’s days, priests judged for reward, taught for hire, and prophesied for money (Micah 3:11).  People who professed to love Him with their lips (Psalm 78:36, Matthew 15:8, Titus 1:16) – but only followed Him in their hearts for a love of personal presents.  It was seen as vain to keep His ordinances otherwise (Isaiah 1:23, Malachi 3:14).

God sees it all – nothing is ever new to Him (Ecclesiastes 1:9).  Others in Old Testament times saw no profit to themselves by serving Him, praying, even being cleansed from sin (Job 21;15, Job 34:9, Job 35:3).  God also knows those of us today who are faking our faith.  Pretending to love – not fervently and unfeigned – but to receive some sort of benefit from above (1 Peter 1:22).

Our Father warns us several times in the New Testament there will be people today – and in the days to come – just like this.  With covetousness and feigned words, some will make merchandise of us (2 Peter 2:3-4).  Whole houses will be subverted for filthy lucre (Titus 1:10-16).  By those with a ready mind for money (1 Peter 5:2) – charging for God’s free message (2 Corinthians 11:9).

If we file into such churches and buy into their misguided messages, and allow ourselves to be deceived by the vain words of any man or woman; no matter how great and wise a Christian they may seem (Job 32:9) – to their worldly profit, we are lightly esteeming our Savior (Deuteronomy 32:15). We are being very disobedient children (Ephesians 5:6).  Both Jesus and God do not deserve this kind of treatment.

In the most selfless display of love ever, God decided His only Son deserved to die for our sins – a worthy lamb without spot or blemish (John 3:16, 1 Peter 1:19).  Jesus – the one without sin (2 Corinthians 5:21), the one with no guile ever found in his mouth (1 Peter 2:22), the one who did not deserve to die for anything he ever did – did.  So by God’s grace, Christ would taste death for all (Hebrews 2:9).

Believers or unbelievers, God does not “owe” anyone anything, at anytime – ever.  The Lord has already given us everything He could ever give.  As Christians, we can’t go around counting up all our righteousness acts and wonderful works, then redeem them for worldly blessings from above. We’ve overcome the world – having been redeemed from the grave by God through His Son’s redemptive blood (1 Peter 1:9, 1 John 5:4).

Therefore, any work we do for God is always as unprofitable servants (second lead verse).  Any type of deserving attitude simply reverses servitude and merit back on ourselves.  Christ died in vain if that is ever our mindset.  It’s our duty to do all He commands – especially repentance unto salvation (Acts 17:30, 2 Corinthians 7:10).  Remission of sins is not a recommendation.

A debt is something owed – such as money, goods, or services.  It is an obligation to repay or render the same in return.  Our Father is never in debt to us. We owe Him everything – including giving our lives if need be (John 15:13) – for what He did for us at Calvary.  This is not reckoned of grace – but out of our debt to Him (Romans 4:4).  We have already received God’s very best.  Our Father deserves our very best to serve Him in return – always.

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(NKJV and KJV Scripture)

– Do not say, “I will do to him just as he has done to me; I will render to the man according to his work.” – Proverbs 24:29

Whether we are believers or not – most of us learned the Bible’s Golden Rule of  “doing unto others” (Matthew 7:12) as children, even if we weren’t attending church.  It does not tell us to do good things unto others – but only if they do the same in return, exactly when and why we want them to.  If they don’t – we don’t stop doing them.  It does not say to do bad things unto others – exactly like they have done to us.

If we don’t, though – well, aren’t they just getting away with it? No – we don’t do unto others as they have already done in the past (lead verse).  The Golden Rule is not a conditional verse.  It says we are to do unto others as we would want them to do unto us – even when they are not doing so; even if they never do. Remember, we are all unprofitable servants (Luke 17:7-10).

If our conscience is towards God, it is thank-worthy – even if we endure grief and suffer wrongfully (1 Peter 2:19).  Didn’t God endure grief when He watched His only Son suffer wrongfully on the Cross?  Remember how much grief Joseph seemingly suffered wrongfully for years?  God was setting up a future event of good all along – which only He could see (Hebrews 11:1).

What might have happened if Joseph had spent his time – in the meantime – trying to do unto others as they had done unto him? Attempting to get back and pay people back for supposedly messing up his life?  Everything bad God put Joseph through was required for later good – to save his family from famine (Genesis 45:5-47:12, Ecclesiastes 3:15, Romans 8:28).

Just because God’s sentence against an evil work is not executed as speedily as we like it sometimes – it is well with us who fear Him (Ecclesiastes 8:11-13).  We may be requited some good if we turn the other cheek (2 Samuel 16:5-12).  We are not to avenge – but to over-come evil with good.  Vengeance belongs to God alone.  It is a terrible thing to fall into His hands (Romans 12:19-21, Hebrews 10:30-31).

It may take more time than our temperament might allow – but His final punishment will be fiery and forever.  God will by no means clear the guilty – He will not at all acquit the wicked (Exodus 34:7, Nahum 1:3). Just remember, we were all born with wicked hearts – and Scripture has concluded all of us are guilty of sin (Jeremiah 17:9, Romans 3:23, Galatians 3:22).

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(Scripture from the NKJV and KJV)

– And Elijah came unto all the people and said, “How long shall you halt between two opinions?  If the Lord be your God – follow Him.  But if Baal – then follow him.”  And the people did not answer him a word. – 1 Kings 18:21

Many people back in Old Testament days had trouble truly following God – just as we can Christ today.  Some blatantly worshipped Baal – an earthly, worldly idol.  They had their own priest named Mattan (2 Kings 11:18).  Others appeared godly outwardly with lip service – doing lots of religious things like the Pharisees in the New Testament – but their hearts were fully set on Baal and the goods of this world (Matthew 15;8).

In the lead verse above, some had believed Baal so completely and faithfully – they were positive he could summon fire down from heaven to Mt. Carmel – and begin the blaze for a burnt offering.  Elijah felt like he was the only one left who was truly following the true God.  So, Elijah put them on the spot – and their hesitation in answering seemed to confirm his suspicions about their allegiance.  They then proceeded to call on Baal from morning to noon – but no fire. Elijah then mocked their god (1 Kings 18:22-27).

What usually trips us up more often than anything else in our walk with the Lord as Christians – and causes us to stumble – is when we try to switch back-and-forth between the world and the Word.  We’re of two opinions.  We cannot drink of the Lord’s cup – and the cup of the devils; nor partake of the Lord’s table and the table of devils at the same time (1 Corinthians 10:21).  We can try – but it usually makes for a very bumpy ride on the road to heaven.

Some call this straddling the fence as believers – the Word on one side and the world on the other.  The grass may be greener on the world side, but the grace is greater on the Word side. Grace is unmerited favor.  When we are on the world’s side, we tend to have a merited favor mindset – not an unprofitable servant one (Luke 17:7-10).  We’ll follow the Word outwardly – but inwardly our hearts are set on goods we think we may deserve from God – often by merely being a Christian.  We can always fool others – but never Him (Hebrews 4:12-13).

If we halt and hesitate between two opinions every morning we wake up – as to whom we choose to serve that day (Joshua 24:15) – the shiny and tempting lights of the world that Satan and his ministers like to blind our eyes with might be too bright (2 Corinthians 4:4, 2 Corinthians 11:14-15).  We’ll be like moths to a flame.  Except the fire will be just more of the devil’s deceptive darkness – disguised as a very luring light (Luke 11:35).

The name Baal has become synonymous with false gods and fake worship in much of modern Christianity.  It’s commonly accepted through etymology that  the name Beelzebub originated from Baalzebub. – the prince of devils or demons (Matthew 12:24).  What’s going to happen if the world and Satan start winning out over the Word – as they seem to be doing more and more in today’s Christianity?  What if we misuse Scripture to just to get what we want in this fleeting life?  Will those with the opinion of truly following God by the Word be the ones who are mocked this time around (2 Chronicles 36:16)?

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