It’s harsh to openly say “who cares” when staring point blank at someone in need. And although other phrases may come to mind seeing the cardboard sign dude on the corner; there are people in almost every direction suffering lack; material, emotional, and spiritual hunger. But at this point we must acknowledge we face an invisible enemy who is expert at keeping people from helping others; expert at keeping people from being kind; expert at robbing God of opportunities to show His mercies. This week we study how indifference represents the photo-negative of the Godly Fruit of kindness. Evidence of indifference in our living offers proof that the Spirit’s fruit of kindness in you is under attack and is trying to be destroyed.
Skip this next if you are up on our Spiritual Warfare series. But if not, please endure a reading
The purpose of this set of Pastor Bob’s messages is to facilitate understanding of the rules of engagement for Biblical intervention with the forces of evil. It is a demanding stretch along the Jesus Path. Please begin with the first by mashing the link below
The Restart premise is that God has proclaimed nine (9) fruit of the Spirit, Satan and his screwed-up crowd are going to peck at you, Raven-like, attacking your ability to reflect the beauty of those nine Blessed Outworkings. And as we left off from the 2017 Holiday break, we determined his attacks are evidenced by the presence of their “photo-negative” in our lives. We drew a list and adopted it. You can mash the links to catch those messages, to see how the demonic opposite of the fruit seeks to suck the Godly fruit dry.
- The Opposite of LOVE = Treachery
- The Opposite of JOY = Misery
- The Opposite of PEACE = Anxiety
- The Opposite of PATIENCE =Temper
It seems to me the photo-negative, or opposite of kindness is INDIFFERENCE. Evidences of indifference can be seen in at least three general attitudes; three varieties of fruit that are not Godly or productive for the kingdom
Key Bible Verse
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God…
It becomes evident we are living indifferently to others when we manifest the following three outworkings:
- Ignoring promptings
- Lacking compassion
- Denying authority
Ignoring promptings is as it sounds. The Spirit of God nudges us to observe a need. But for most of us our reaction is to filter our response through the lens of our own skill set – by what we think we can or cannot do to help. We filter out and neglect an opportunity for obedience because we don’t see ourselves doing what the prompt suggests. Such filtering quenches the active Presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Believer and thwarts His intention to bring relief through us. Bible Ground is to understand you don’t know what you can do; But God does. When we filter out promptings to act we demonstrate a selfish perspective.
The Bible teaches the God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desires. He knows how, when and where He wants you to participate in the Kingdom work. He counts on the Fruit of Kindness being available in you to empower and direct. As the Lord asked Moses: Is God’s Power Limited? Since God’s power is not limited, our measure of our own capacities will not match God’s. And since His power is not limited, it stands that His ability to provision and support efforts of kindness to others is also unlimited.
Lacking compassion is a clear evidence of the work of demons against your God-given, Spiritual fruit of kindness. We seek fruits of fulfillment and happiness in the wrong places. We see to our own welfare first. This point of view carries the secondary effect of making the inner person grow weak. Our spiritual muscles grow accustomed to inactivity and atrophy. We quench the Spirit with our choices; we fail to train and exercise our spiritual giftedness. (But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil – Hebrews 5:14) We neglect to strengthen our inner soul with prayer and daily Bible reading.
- How is your prayer life (quick, choppy, inconsistent?)
- How is your Bible reading (infrequent, unguided?)
When we let our spiritual muscles atrophy and wane – our ability to show compassion on others (aka Kindness) dwindles. If we are neglectful to read and pray with fervor and regularity – that is a sure sign of demonic influence.
Denying Authority is a third sure sign that the Believer lives vexed by the destructive activities of demons. The Lord has chosen to construct and constrain us through the application of Authority. Just who is God in your life? Who holds authority over your life-vision; over your struggles for meaning and significance? The Word says we are not our own, that we have been bought (such as a slave is bought.) (See 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and also 1 Corinthians 7:23).
For we will either be the slave of God (to act with kindness) or the slave of self (to defy God’s right; His Authority to prompt you into things He wants.) We are more apt to explain our disobedience to His Authority by shifting blame and dodging responsibility.
- “Someone should do something”
- But that someone never seems to be you
We are commanded to submit to God’s Authority. Jesus said:
- A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another (John 13:34)
Notice He said a “new commandment” Think a moment… what’s new about the Bible teaching to love one another? The answer is that Jesus fully assumes His Authority to instruct us to love as He does. This is a new and startling development. Not only are we to love other people beside ourselves; we are commanded to submit to the Authority of Jesus and love other people as He does. Without rancor, without judgement, without thought to the cost. He loved with His Life –
- Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13)
The Fruit of the Holy Spirit named kindness is powerful and effective; the perfect display of the loving attentions the Good God has stored up for all peoples. The poison of indifference seeks to stimie and deflect these loving graces, leaving the people we ignore feeling dazed and alone. I am afraid our Restart video recording continues to be plagued such that I was once again not able to zoom the camera on the monitor at over my left shoulder. So it will be difficult to benefit from the graphics I prayed over. God is Good. I pray you will listen to the words of the message.