A Pause in the Series…
We’ve researched the first five Fruit of the Spirit. Friend Paul speaks of nine (9) (Smack this Link to see them). Let’s pause before we move on to the last four (4). We have been deliberate to act under the following premise:
- What about when we manifest character traits opposite those of God?
- What about those times when you and I act in self-indulgence?
At these times we produce the “photo-negative” of God’s Fruit. This opposite-fruit shows up in our expressions, hopes and demeanor. It colors our vision; it seeks to delude our self-assessment. I say this because the thing you battle is alive. You are under demonic attack. If you manifest the opposite of Godly Fruit, it means the devil and his crowd fear your use of the Fruit they attack. I have listed the first five sessions in our series with links to an in-depth look at the demonic antithesis of Godly Fruit. But more importantly – each lesson stands tall on Bible Ground in expounding the Godly antidote to each of these wicked assaults on purpose, meaning and significance. Smack that link and I will send you to the right shelf in the Pastor’s Study.
- The Opposite of LOVE = Treachery
- The Opposite of JOY = Misery
- The Opposite of PEACE = Anxiety
- The Opposite of PATIENCE = Temper
- The Opposite of KINDNESS = Indifference
Permit me to suggest you use these links if you feel stifled away from Holy Spirit Fruit. Self-Assess. Be objective. The Truth doesn’t give a rip about what you believe. Truth is truth. And if you see some stupid stuff going on in your life, it’s time to climb up to Bible Ground. Take the Fruit of Joy for example…
- If you are vexed with misery, your protective hilltop “Joy” is under attacked by the enemy
- The antidote to demonic misery is Bible study on Joy; God’s Joy is always available
- Understand the relationship between Joy and Misery
Making progress along the Jesus Path invariably draws the attention of malignant, adversarial lifeforms entirely-not-like-you. Angels gone bad. Angels formerly beholding the Presence; a third of them swept away in the chaos of their doomed Leader. It’s not rocket science to know why Believers come under demonic attack. Only Jesus is hated more by Satan than people like you and me: Jesus Followers. He attacks our potential to help others find Jesus.
And this is why I have been intentional in our approach. If there is crud in your life, it is an attack on Godly Fruit. Look at yourself. What do you see? Find the Godly Fruit opposite to your point of failure and study, meditate and memorize Biblical Truth on that Fruit. Our studies in Spiritual Warfare have come far in five (5) sessions. We’ve four (4) more Godly Fruit to explore. It’s going to be an exciting and empowering study.
- I pray you examine the Word of God frequently
- Our God testifies this life-changing habit brings wisdom and instruction
- The Bible is the User Guide to humanity
At this point permit me to tie in a few thoughts by way of interlude and application. We will soon return our attention to the next four Fruit, but we will take a few sessions to concentrate on the some fundamental questions. Such as:
What meaning is there for your life?
My syntax there is wobbly to slow you down. What of the difference between where you are and where you want to be – in any area of human engagement. Why are there so many obstacles? Why at times do my energies seem uselessly spent? Why can’t I find purpose, real meaning, and personal significance? Is “a life well-lived” the real measure of legacy? Think a moment about those who will learn of your death. What memories will stir their hearts? How long will they miss you – if at all?
What about you is going to survive you?
The Jesus Path is totally about leaving lasting goodness behind when we die
Key Bible Verse
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children…
One key learning from this quote is: “What part of this do I own?” Two things jump out.
- You have rejected knowledge. God has spoken to you and you do not listen.
- You have forgotten the Law of your God. You were once under authority and instruction.
- Don’t lose the personal pronoun. You at one time submitted.
But where to start, right? How do we address Knowledge and the Law? What aspect of each offers the best beginning for our study. The Bible holds mountains of Truth about the nature and workings of knowledge. The Bible holds mountains of Truth about what God has set into His Law. For this session today I will take one great Truth from each. One Truth about knowledge and One Truth about the Law.
Here is a great Truth about knowledge from the Word of God, a jewel of great value…
- You are not your own. You do not belong to you.
- Know that the Lord Himself is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture – Psalm 100:3
- “O Lord, You are our Father, we are the clay, and You our potter; and all of us are the work of Your hand” – Isaiah 64:8
- Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Here is a great Truth about the Law from the Word of God, a jewel of great value…
- The Law of Redemption demands Blood
- Without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness… – Hebrews 9:22
- For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atonement. – Leviticus 17:11
Taken together, these Two Truths point back at you and I. We like to make our own decisions and we often live in rebellion to God’s great Truth that we are not the boss of us. God condemns this. And our great Truth from the Law instructs that only blood can cover the cost of our disobedience to His established Order. Our punishment was levied on Jesus. Belief in His accomplished blood-sacrifice cleanses from sin. The only way to recover from sin is thru blood; without Christ we are most surely lost. (For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost – Luke 19:10
Key Bible Verse
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved…
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. We’ve only to (1) speak our belief that Jesus is the Lord of all things and (2) believe in our deepest heart that He was raised up from the dead. This is all that is required to be saved. These are the two requisites for salvation. And not only that, these two continue to testify our allegiance to Jesus in our daily living. Do I speak His Name or hide my association with Him? And will I fill my heart’s treasure box with the Truth of His death and resurrection?
Remember our central question: “What is my purpose in life” Let’s not reject that we are owned by God. We are bought and paid for. Let’s submit to His authority. Let’s not forget that it took blood to cleanse us from our self-indulgent ways – the blood of Christ. To fail at these two points is to live at risk of being “destroyed” as Hosea prophesied. The answer is to live like you’re saved. Confess and believe – that will bring you meaning, that will bring you purpose, that will bring you significance
A Restart video recording to accompany this session was not attempted this week. Pastor Bob is working up a way to put his sermon notes and slides on the shelf in the Pastor’s Study. A link will soon be available. He also hopes to get the bugs out of the video presentation.