Some Things You Cannot Escape
In our society, we are used to people “getting away” with certain things. It seems that we have reared a society which thinks that we can escape certain sins by ignoring them and no one is the wiser. God says there are things we cannot escape in this life no matter how hard we try!
For example, we cannot escape the consequences of sin (Num. 32:23)! We cannot escape sin independently of Christ and His shed blood (Rom. 6:3-6; Acts 2:38, 22:16)! In addition to this, God compares physical sowing and reaping with spiritual sowing and reaping in Galatians 6:7-8. Be sure, there will be a “bitter harvest” awaiting us if we have sown a life of sin and have not been forgiven!
Neither can we escape death! As hard as men try, we cannot escape death (Heb. 9:27)! Death was something God promised as a physical consequence of Adam and Eve’s sin (Gen. 3:19) and it continues to this day. We will not escape death because it will be with us until the Lord returns (I Cor. 15:26)!
Finally, we cannot escape the Judgment. There is a Judgment Day coming in which all mankind will be judged by Christ (Acts 17:30-31; Jn. 5:22). Just like death, no one will escape this event (Ecc. 12:13-14; Matt. 25:31-46; II Cor. 5:10)!
Yes, some things we cannot escape! Yet, we can come through anything successfully when we are in Christ. Are you in Him? (Eph. 1:7-13; Gal. 3:26-27)
“The Deceit Of Alcohol”
The consumption of alcohol is a rampant problem in our world. In fact, drinking alcoholic drinks has become a “way of life” for many. In our society, young and old are encouraged to drink alcohol. This is done irrespective of the dangers associated with alcohol. The dangers include destroying the body, the failure of marriages, losing a job, loss of money, etc. In addition to this is the very real danger of self-deceit.
The Bible warns us about alcohol on many occasions. Solomon said, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler: and whoever is led astray by it is not wise” (Prov. 20:1). In addition to this, Proverbs 23:29-35 explains the results of drinking alcohol in great detail. People who justify drinking alcohol are deceiving themselves! With all the harm alcohol can do to a person, perhaps deception is the worst harm it brings! So long as one has deceived himself by denying the true reason for his troubles, he will continue to drink and ruin his physical health, his family, his life, and worst of all, he will jeopardize his soul!
We know one jeopardizes his soul in the drinking of alcohol when we read passages like I Peter 4:3-4. Peter equates all aspects of alcohol consumption (excess of wine, revellings, banquetings) with “lasciviousness, lusts … abominable idolatries … excess of riot”! Truly, we have deceived ourselves when we treat the drinking of alcohol as “nothing”. Alcohol will maim and destroy. Yes, the consumption of alcohol will jeopardize our souls. Stay away from it (Prov. 23:31)!
Spotlight On A Bible Verse: Matthew 7:21
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” These words are found near the end of Christ’s “Sermon on the Mount.” They stand as a reminder that going to Heaven requires more than merely wishing for it to happen. Going to Heaven demands that men be active! I have seen cars that had “Honk if you love Jesus” bumper stickers. Is honking horns all that Jesus wants? Of course, not! It is not enough to say “Lord, Lord.” Good intentions will not save us, either. In Matthew 7:21, Jesus demands action! He demands that we act upon what we know and obey Him. Jesus says the one who does God’s will has the opportunity to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Are you living a life of obedience to the Lord? If not, why not?
- Jarrod Jacobs
“No Matter What …”
The sentiment shown in our title was expressed by the three Hebrews when they faced Nebuchadnezzar. Regardless of what he did to them, they would not bow down to the image he had made (Dan. 3:17-18). In essence, they said, “No matter what you do to us, we will not forsake the God of Heaven and bow down to your idol.”
Some time later, Daniel expressed the same sentiment when he prayed to God even after he knew a law had been drafted which outlawed prayer (Dan. 6:9-10). He knew the consequence for praying to God was death in the lion’s den (Dan. 6:7), but he prayed anyway. “No matter what ….”
The apostles showed this same resolve when they told the Sanhedrin, “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29). Regardless of the threats made against them (Acts 4:17-18), the imprisonment (Acts 4:3, 5:18), etc., the apostles declared through word and deed that, “No matter what,” we will obey God and will spread the gospel message. “We cannot but speak the things we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20).
In like manner, let those of us who have believed on Christ, repented of our sins, and been baptized for the remission of sins (Mk. 16:16; Acts 2:38), remember that we have responsibilities and duties which we must accept and obey, “No matter what!” It is necessary that God’s children remain faithful to Him, “No matter what!” (I Cor. 15:58; Rev. 2:10)
“I Hate Him”
In I Kings 22, we read that Kings Jehoshaphat and Ahab were uniting to fight Syria. When Jehoshaphat asked Ahab to consult Micaiah, the prophet of God, concerning this work, he refused at first saying, “I hate him” (I Kings 22:8). Ahab eventually had Micaiah imprisoned because he did not like the truth Micaiah spoke (I Kings 22:26-28).
Hating Micaiah did not change the truth. Ahab died that day, just as had been prophesied (I Kings 22:17, 37-38). Imprisoning Micaiah did not change the truth he spoke. The truth is the truth regardless of how men respond to it! Friends, when will we learn?
Just as the truth was spoken in the Old Testament, so also the truth is spoken in the New (Jn. 17:17). Acting like King Ahab and hating the messenger does not change the message (Gal. 4:16). God’s message is the same whether we are mad (II Kings 5:11), sad (Matt. 19:22), or glad (Acts 2:42)!
Therefore, the question is not, “Does God’s word make you mad?” It is, “Will you believe and obey what God has said?” Truly, faith and obedience to God’s message is what will save (Jn. 8:24; Heb. 5:9; Jas. 2:24-26). Do not turn away from the truth simply because it made you mad. Instead, examine your life and see why God’s truth would produce that response, and then repent while you can (Acts 17:30; II Cor. 6:2). Don’t be like Ahab and allow hatred to ruin you!