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Posts Tagged ‘feast of the tabernacles’


KJV and NKJV Scripture

– But made himself of no reputation, and took upon himself the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.  And, in fashion as a man, he (Jesus) humbled himself and became obedient unto death – even the death of the Cross. – Philippians 2:7-8

– Serving our own interest to the neglect of Jesus is a very great sin.  It is common among Christians and ministers.  Many prefer their own credit, ease, and safety – before truth, holiness, and duty.  The things of their own pleasure and reputation before the things of Christ and giving honor to God. – Matthew Henry

After Jesus cleansed a certain leper, the leper was instructed to say nothing about it to any man – but only to show himself to a priest in a city where they both resided.  The leper did not listen.  Instead, he began to publish the event much, and blazed abroad about the miracle … to the point where Christ could not enter into this city openly (Mark 1:40-45).  There would just be too much attention centered on Jesus.

During the Feast of the Tabernacles, some of Christ’s brethren questioned his obvious desire to shun the public spotlight and remain unspotted as much as possible (James 1:27).  They said, “Go into Judea, so your disciples may also see the works you do.  For there is no man who does anything in secret, and he himself seeks to be known openly.  If you do these things, show yourself to the world (John 7:3-4).”

These words were all born out of unbelief (John 7:5). Jesus was not acting or talking like a king of earthly reputation would – much less an eternal king.  Christ did not show any cravings for notoriety, nor showed any desire for some sort of status in society.  Jesus simply went about his Father’s business quietly (Luke 2:49), humbly obeying Him all the way to the Cross. Dying there so we would learn to live the same way.

All reputations, good, bad, or in between are of this world.  They show God continued conformance to it, and not being transformed by truth (Romans 12:1-2). Positive reputations can bring a certain amount of prestige and praise, while negative ones can bring a lot of problems and pain.  People who have the latter can squander precious time attempting to repair and restore broken images by external methods or means.

Whatever reputations do or don’t do, they are all in direct opposition to God’s Word.  No matter how they are created or destroyed, they are not in alignment or agreement with His will.  Climbing up the corporate ladder to fame and making a name, or the Christian rungs to do the same, is not why God put us here on earth.  It is to stay humbly obedient to His way until death, so we might be saved (e.g. Hebrews 9:15).

Sadly, and with eternal consequences if not corrected, the modern church has been creating a idolatrous culture of celebrity Christian singers, writers, and speakers for decades.  Some of these people are of great repute and have attained cult-like followings. But, they are grievous wolves drawing disciples away for themselves.  Speaking perverse things for profit, and to preserve their reputation (Acts 20:29-30).

This all may seem new, but it’s not (Ecclesiastes 1:9-10).  Moses dealt with 250 princes in his assembly who rose up against him and Aaron.  Men of renown, with reputations, and all famous in the congregation (Numbers 16:2).  Paul spoke of those who seemed to be somebody, but it made no difference to him.  They didn’t add anything to his teachings as God respects no man’s person (Romans 2:11, Galatians 2:6).

God has several thoughts regarding all of this.  Read what the prophet Daniel writes about it: “And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing.  And, He does according to His will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth.  None can stay His hand and say to Him, ‘What are You doing (Daniel 4:35)?'”  Still, there is someone who wants us to think differently when it comes to reputations.

The deceiver of this world (Revelation 12:9) and its prince (John 14:30), Satan, does a very good job in convincing even the most steadfast Christians they must maintain a certain image in life to present to others; a religious reputation to uphold.  This is a device the devil uses to trick believers into thinking they’re standing firm in faith.  But, it’s only upon their reputation, and not the foundation of Jesus – if at all.

This is how Christians fall from repentance and grace (Hebrews 6:4-6, Hebrews 12:15) – and can end up finding no space in heaven.  It is how they give place to Satan and fall into his same condemnation, as good reputations tend to puff people up in pride (Ephesians 4:27, 1 Timothy 3:6).  Having one pushes God to the sidelines, unless He seems to be helping them keep their high esteem and good standing before others.

Instead of having the same before Him.  What keeps us in our Father’s esteem, good standing, and favor, is repenting of things like desires to have a reputation – along with the haughty airs having one can bring. Yes, it is true we are created in His image, but this does not mean we are born with His attributes.  To obtain them, we’re commanded to produce spiritual fruits not usually esteemed among men (Luke 16:15).

The humble example of Christ is set before us in the Bible.  Learning Jesus is not a recommendation from God to contemplate (Ephesians 4:20-32).  It is not something to mull over, but a commandment to obey. Desires for the fleeting praise and prestige worldly admiration can bring, along with the advantage of reputations, are dangerous ways to defy God, and to face consequences for doing so (2 Thessalonians 1:8).

 

 

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KJV and NKJV Scripture

– He that speaks of himself – seeks his own glory. – John 7:18

– Let another man praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger and not your own lips. – Proverbs 27:2

When man searches for his own glory, it is not glory in the eyes of God (Proverbs 25:27).  Glory-seeking like this leads to a lot of prideful speaking.  Personal pronouns like “I” and “my” preface communications followed with words about how proud one is of such things as their children, charity, or careers.  This talk has crossed from world to Word, with many Christians openly and pridefully glorying of works and churches.

Satan fell like lightning from heaven a long time ago (Luke 10:18) – never to return because of his pride. The devil wanted a glory only God is ever entitled to. Our Father will not give His to another (Isaiah 42:8). So, since then, Satan has been roaring around like a starving lion here on earth, going to and fro (1 Peter 5:8, Job 1:7), seeking whom he can devour.  People like Job, who had developed a huge “I” problem.

Here is a man God called upright, and who eschewed evil (Job 1:8).  It did not matter to Satan.  The devil saw Job’s worldly blessings as his hedge for honoring God (Job 1:10), and his self-glorying (Job 29:20) as a reason to destroy nearly everything Job had.  Seeking God’s permission first as is always the case – Satan then promptly proceeded to eradicate almost all of it in the span of a single day (Job 1:12-19).

Job’s worst fears had just been realized (Job 3:25). When his three friends heard about all that had just happened, they showed up in support.  However, all four sat silent for a week.  Job’s grief was great.  Why did God allow such horrific affliction (Job 2:7, 11-13, Lamentations 3:32-33)?  Well, Job was a man of flesh whose glory was fresh inside him (Job 29:20).  This is always unacceptable to God (1 Corinthians 1:29).

The 29th chapter of Job clearly shows how blinded he had become by both his prideful “I” issues and “my” mentality.  From the 6th to 25th verse, God’s name is not mentioned once.  However, Job uses “I”, “my”, and “me” 39 times in just 20 verses.  He just cannot stop talking about himself here.  Job certainly seemed to cherish the idea he was choosing out the paths in life for other people – instead of God (Job 29:21-25).

Seeking our own glory sows seeds of arrogance and pride.  Unrighteous roots soon form and branches of bragging, gloating and showboating are fast to follow. Such is boasting in everything but the Cross of Christ (Galatians 6:14) … and it is not glorying in personal infirmities so God’s grace can be sufficient at all times – that the power of Jesus can rest upon us continually (2 Corinthians 12:9, 1 Peter 4:14).

During the Jews’ feast of tabernacles, some of Christ’s brethren implored him to start showing himself more openly than he had been doing (Mark 1:43-44, Mark 8:27-30).  Otherwise, what was the point of Jesus being so secretive (John 7:2-4)?  However, Christ couldn’t seek glory belonging only to God by broad-casting heavenly works and miracles to as many as possible – as one leper did (Mark 1:45, John 7:18).

We are all to give proper glory to the Lord – humbly; not pridefully – before He causes darkness.  Before our feet stumble upon the dark mountain – and when we look for light again – He shall then turn it into the shadow of death (Jeremiah 13:16).  It isn’t the gushy and loud lip service glory given most frequently on a Sunday morning; but by quiet life service like Christ, born out of a steadfast, unwavering faith within.

So we can keep ourselves unspotted from the world as much as possible (James 1:27).  So we prove our own works to God – and have rejoicing in ourselves alone – and not in another (Galatians 6:4).  So we’re happy having faith to ourselves and do not flaunt in front of others (Romans 14:22).  So the glory stays right where it is supposed to – above and not below (1 Chronicles 29:11, Psalm 57:5, Psalm 113:4).

 

 

 

 

 

 

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