It astonishes me how so many refuse the true promises of God. What amazes me most is one’s refusal of His eternal love. Sin is terminal, and to willingly indulge in it is fatal. I will admit that I am not the most eloquent or the most knowledgeable person that has ever walked this earth, but one thing I praise God for is that I am also not one of the most foolhardy. I could never imagine a life without Him, and even though I have not always been faithful, He has always been faithful to me. This in and of itself gives me a reason to praise Him, and as I give Him honor, I am only drawn more deeply into His unending love. My life has never been simple, and while I have spent most of it running in the opposite direction, I know I have never been able to run far enough to be out of His eternal presence or reproof. It is easy to doubt something I cannot see or to ridicule something I do not understand, but to place my life in total jeopardy because of willful ignorance is pure folly. They say you should never tell children not to do something or forbid them from doing it, because when you do, they will surely do it. Rules without a relationship will lead to chaos and rebellion. Curiosity or the need to know, in most instances, is understandable when it causes an incident to occur, but simply doing something asinine because you have been forbidden to do it is insane. Pride, arrogance, insolence, or doing something out of hatred or spite can never be considered judicious, especially when you will be forced to suffer for your actions. I guess we could call it a double whammy; you must pay the price of misery for your feeling of hatred or animosity, and you must be chastised for doing the crime. I was recently told of a girl that because of the unfaithfulness of her boy friend, gave herself to another. Out of spite and a need for revenge, a child was conceived and her life was consequently made more complicated and complex. Life is not to be lived as a moment of remorse and self-pity, and to do so is to totally misunderstand what God has intended. Believing there is no God does not excuse you from rational thinking, but if it did, why would you always want to be miserable? God demands accountability, and disbelief is not a release from His chastisement. God’s Word is a mystery to those who are lost, but being a mystery does not dismiss its importance and liability. “These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes. Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver” (Psalm 50: 21-22). “He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy” (Proverbs 29:1). Why is it that so many choose to tempt God? Is it because they really wish to die, or is it because of their lack of intelligence?
God, in His authoritative stand, will not be mocked, and to do so will only invite His wrath. Willful arrogance will not take you to a better place but make you feel more gallant and proud. Thinking you are bigger than God only shows your true illogical reasoning. Being intellectual does not make you wise. Flaunting indiscretion does not show your competence. “Jesus said unto him, ‘It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God’” (Matthew 4:7) Why should anyone become so brash that they choose to tempt or ridicule God? Is it possible for them to become so foolish that they would mock the only authority that is powerful enough to save them, powerful enough to destroy them? Is their arrogant spirit the only power that controls them, or is the tempting of God merely the action of a disobedient child, in their guileless innocence, doing what they have been warned not to do? It really can’t be all that simple. Just because you are a child does not make you a fool; you are merely immature and uneducated. Even children, by their repetition, learn not to do those things that are dangerous and destructive. When you arrive at a point where you know the difference between right and wrong and you continually choose to do those things that are corrupt and rebellious, then you are a fool. The words of a wise man’s mouth are gracious; but the lips of a fool will swallow up himself. The beginning of the words of his mouth is foolishness: and the end of his talk is mischievous madness. A fool also is full of words: a man cannot tell what shall be; and what shall be after him, who can tell him? The labour of the foolish wearieth every one of them, because he knoweth not how to go to the city. Ecclesiastics 10:12-15. Do you really believe that the world and those with the power to govern it have your best interest at heart? If the lust for power is given by the Prince of darkness, how can one’s loyalty not be given to this same entity? If to risk losing your soul in an attempt of gaining a tremendous prize is considered foolish, what is losing it by uttering idle words of discontent to be called? It would seem to me if you are offended at being called stupid, why would you not refrain from doing those things that label you as such? If the one who is labeling you as being stupid is the one showing their stupidity, of what true merit is their name-calling? No one can make you something you are not; labels are just that, labels. As a kid, we had this response when someone was calling us a name. “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me!” Wisdom will always make you wise while foolish actions will always leave you a fool. You are the one who chooses to become what you are by the life you lead; you and you alone will determine your final destiny. Having itchy ears and an unrepentant heart will not take you to a haven of rest or to a place of glorious triumph. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. Galatians 6:7-8
To rid yourself of anything that is upright, beneficial, or productive can never be a positive endeavor, even when you are the only one who must pay the consequences. We are, indeed, a brotherhood, a family of common interests and desires. That is not to say that we all have the same goals and aspirations, but that we were all created by the same God and created for the same purpose, and that is to please Him. What we choose to do or how we choose to live will eventually affect those around us for the good or for the evil. Seldom has anyone been satisfied or fulfilled by doing those things that are contrary to their purpose, and being forced to live in a manner that is hostile to their desires will not create peace and contentment. Revenge and retribution are caused by one’s lack of forgiveness and will cause no good end.
“For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee. But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth” (Psalm 86:5 and 15). We are to be like the Lord, full of compassion and understanding. Knowing that this world is inherently evil, it is wise to be alert and prepared to resist its evil onslaught. You cannot be neutral or uninvolved. You must choose the side you wish to support, or you will be forced to accept and live what others decide is important. Following the crowd is never an advisable strategy because you will be held accountable for the indiscretions of others. There is no bigger fool than one who must be punished for the actions of another. We need to be separate from the world and think for ourselves. God said that if you lack wisdom, you should ask Him for it and He would give it to you. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and up-braideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed” (James 1:5-6). If you do not stand for what you believe in, you will be trampled under the feet of those who have causes that they are willing to fight and die for. Life is all about causes, and it is important that you choose those that are honest and morally justifiable according to God’s will. It doesn’t take much common sense to understand that this world is morally deficient and that the things it can offer you are just as empty and un-fulfilling.
Immaturity will only become foolishness when you permit it to destroy you. The lack of knowledge should never bring about foolish actions or the lack of common sense. The enemy lives in the hearts and minds of those who are foolish, and causes them to do those things that are un-seemly and imprudent. Hearing someone say they know they are wrong, but that they are comfortable with their mistakes is like listening to someone writing their own obituary. What bigger fool can there be than someone giving out a warning, who is then unwilling to heed it? So many lives are lost because of thoughtless actions, and once lost, they are gone forever. I have often wondered what would happen if we could actually see all the souls that are burning in hell and hear their cries of torment. Would it really cause us to change our lives and repent? Somehow, I feel that so many have closed their eyes to the truth and refused to see or listen. The help of God is so close, but many seemingly do not want to accept it. God does not glory in calling someone a fool; He has provided His only Son to give us all a way of victory. It pains me to see those who arrogantly denounce the love that God has provided for them, but when I know that those who live their lives without accepting Him are in the same predicament, it becomes oppressive. Being good or thoughtful does not get you to heaven. As I write, I am not attempting to prove that I am special or superior. To me that really has no true merit, when I see so many who are seemingly unconcerned and cold to the truth of God’s Word. To those who doubt, I say, check it out for yourself. Check it out, but do it with an open heart and mind, knowing that your eternal condition is at stake. I have seen God’s hand at work both in blessing and in chastisement. To deny His marvelous power and grandeur is to deny the unalterable truth. What have I to gain by denying what is to be found factual? What should I expect to lose if I refuse to believe? I find it simple and advisable to be realistic, to accept things as they really are. God has not chosen to hide the truth from His children; He will not be found un-compassionate. To be proven wrong is not a sin, but to refuse to repent will bring about His chastisement. Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. 1 Corinthians 3:18-20
Wise or foolish, humble or proud, in the matters of the heart there is forever a need to possess those things that are spiritual and godly. God wants to spare all of His children the pain and misery of life; but, if we are unwilling to put Him in His proper place, He cannot do all that is needed. My heart goes out to those who have been drawn so deeply into the deception of the enemy. They cannot see the magnificent truth that is all around them. Even now, I can hear many of them saying that they do not want my pity, but that does not remove the heavy feeling of remorse that hangs over me. Ridicule and scorn will never take the place of true repentance, and to place your soul in the fires of hell can never be a true show of wisdom. I pray for God’s mercy to be upon them and that they will plead God’s forgiveness before it is too late. My intention is not to be presumptive or biased, arrogant, or proud; I know that the love that God has for humanity covers us all. It is not God’s will that any should perish, but even God’s will won’t save those who are rebellious and foolish. I continually ask my God if I have said or have not said something I should have. I want to do what is right, and being aware of this, I feel anxious and responsible. I know I can only do what God has asked of me, but my continual prayer is that many will heed God’s Word and allow Him to cleanse their hearts and make them one of His.