Posts Tagged ‘Lifestyle’


(I Peter 2:13-23)

INTRODUCTION: We live in a very rude world. And unfortunately, people are becoming ruder by the minute. Common courtesy isn’t so common any more. It seems that respect for people is at an all time low. Our favorite kind of humor today is sarcasm — put down humor. Whether it is one of the many late night comedians who many tune in and listen to, to hear them put down society. Their favorite targets are those in authority, those in leadership; those who should be respected if for no other reason than because of their position.

I Peter 2:17Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.”

But the Bible makes it very clear that respect is one of those values that is necessary for life. The Bible is very specific about this. Make your attitude and your responses in situations a serious matter of prayer. Remember it may be you with the wrong attitude. Ask God to give you insight to determine the right behavior in situations that can cause you to get angry. (Ecclesiastes 7:9 – Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.)

In this 2 part series we are considering the why and how of showing respect. In part #1 of this 2 part series we examined  the “why” and in part #2 we will examine the “how”.

5 PRACTICAL WAYS TO SHOW RESPECT – In a world that’s full of rudeness and disrespect, how can we show respect to others in a practical way?

When We Speak, Be Tactful, Not Just Truthful. Proverbs 15:4 “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit.”

What is tact?

  • Tact is the ability to make a point without making an enemy.
  • Tact is when you tell someone to go jump off a cliff in a way that makes them look forward to the journey.
  • Tact is treating everybody as if they knew what they were talking about.
  • Tact is the art of telling someone he’s open minded when he’s really just got a hole in his head.

The primary way we show respect is with our words.

  • ‘Wholesome‘ carries with it the idea of healing or curative.
  • This verse reminds us that we need to give attention to how we speak. Paul admonished us to ‘Speak the truth in love’
  • The way we say something will go a long way in determining how well it’s going to be received. Learning how to be truthful and tactful at the same time is an absolute essential of being respectful.
  • People with tact often have a lot less to retract. We don’t have to eat our words as often if we say them in a kind way.
  • Many people today don’t understand this; they often confuse rudeness with frankness. “I just tell it like it is and let the chips fall where they may!” That’s not being frank; that’s being mean and disrespectful to people.

The Power of the tongueSolomon wrote about the power of the tongue in (Proverbs 18:21 –  Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.)

“The power of the tongue” to do Good.

  • The tongue has the ability to dispense good council and wisdom from trusted Godly leaders when we need it. (Proverbs 10:20 – The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth.)
  • The tongue has the power of encouragement. The right word at the right time can do wonders to encourage someone with a heavy heart. (Proverbs 12:25 – Heaviness in the heart of man maketh it stoop: but a good word maketh it glad.)
  • The tongue has the power to stop anger before it has a chance to boil over. (Proverbs 15:1 – A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.)
  • Using your words in a Godly uplifting way can bring great joy. The tongue can be the source of many good fruitful works in our life. (Proverbs 15:23 – A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!)

The power of the tongue” to do Evil.

  • In the list of 7 abominations in the sight of God, Solomon mentions lying lips and those that sow discord among the brethren. (Proverbs 6:17,19 – A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.) – Notice in the same sentence that God condemns murder; He mentions and condemns lying as well. To tell a lie, especially about another Christian, is a serious sin. (Colossians 3:9Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;)
  • A person with a perverse tongue will fall into mischief. (Proverbs 17:20 – He that hath a froward heart findeth no good: and he that hath a perverse tongue falleth into mischief.)
  • Gossip will cause deep and lasting wounds. (Proverbs 18:8 – The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.)
  • Notice what the “abomination” is in this passage. It is one who uses his or her tongue to sow discord among the brethren or among saved people.
  • Your tongue has a lot of potential, potential to do good and potential to do evil. What are you using your tongue for? Are you building up your friends and people you know or are you tearing them down behind their back? Are you spreading lies about someone? Are you gossiping about someone? Are you using the power of your tongue for good or for evil?

When We Are Served, Be Understanding Not Demanding. Luke 6:31And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

  • One of the greatest tests of our character is how we treat people when they serve us. Waitress, waiters, clerks, employees, even family!
  • When people are doing something for us, are we understanding or are we demanding?
  • It takes no intelligence at all to be rude. But it takes great character and great maturity to be understanding, and not demanding, of people. The best place to practice this is at home.
  • I know people who treat their families in ways they would never consider treating a stranger. They say hurtful things to their families or people they know that they would never consider saying to someone they didn’t know. That’s not right. God says even in our families we need to be understanding, not demanding.

When We Disagree, Be Gentle Not Judgmental. Romans 14:12 “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.”  This verse reminds us that ultimately we will all give an accounting before the Lord.

  • I am going to give an account to God for myself and everyone else will give an     account for themselves.
  • Judgment belongs to God, not me.
  • I can disagree with you on any number of issues, without becoming disagreeable or judgmental.
  • Remember, telling the truth is not being judgmental.
  • But if I use the truth to attack and beat people down, then I am wrong. (Ephesians 4:29 – Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.)
  • Paul reminded us that if we don’t have love, then people won’t hear the message of truth that we want to proclaim. (I Corinthians 13:1 – Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.)
  • We can be right on an issue but if we’re rude about it, we’re wrong!

When We Share Our Faith, Be Respecting Not Rejecting. I Peter 3:15 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:”

  • We cannot argue people into heaven.
  • We won’t see them come to Christ if our attitude is wrong when we are talking to them about God or the Bible.
  • When we share our faith we must do so with gentleness and respect.

When People Are Rude, Respond Politely. Romans 12:17 “Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.” Don’t retaliate by being rude back.  That only makes things worse. A good rule of communication is “Act, don’t react.” God expects us to react to every situation, every individual, in manner that is biblical. (Ephesians 4:31-32 – Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.)

IN CONCLUSION: We all want to be respected. We want other people to treat us with dignity. The Bible makes it very clear that respect is one of those values that is necessary for life. The Bible is very specific about this. We find that we are to respect parents, people in authority, and church leadership. Being respectful and courteous to people is one of the great evidences that you know God. How you treat people and the amount of respect you show to those in leadership positions over you is a good reflection on your true heart condition to God. How about you? What could people glean from how respectful or disrespectful you are to others in your life? Would they determine that you have a good heart relationship with the Lord or a bad heart relationship with the Lord? (Mark 7:6 – He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.)


Hearken… TO DO Them – part 2

(Deuteronomy 4:1-14)

Deuteronomy 4:1 “Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you.”

WE SERVE A MIGHTY AND LOVING GOD THAT CANNOT BE COMPARED TO ANYTHING. (4:7-8, verse 7For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for?)- Rightly so, as verses 7-8 point out that what the Lord is doing with Israel is no small thing. What nation has ever had a god so close to his people as the Lord is to Israel? The Lord handpicked Israel in His graciousness. The Lord answers when they call. The Lord was so concerned about His peoples’ success that He came down on Mount Sinai to give them a law more perfect and righteous than any man-made system of morality and justice. Other nations create and choose their gods. Other gods don’t answer. Other gods have to be appeased with great sacrifices to prevent great wrath. What the Lord does with Israel is different and marvelous.

  • Moses now shows them the great opportunity they have been given by the Lord through obedience to His ways. If Israel will continue to keep His statutes while they live in the Promised Land, they will have exceedingly more wisdom and understanding than the nations around them. The world often looks at rules as something we keep to appease a higher authority. This limited view is especially foolish when it comes to God’s rules and statutes. Aligning our lives by His standards is the path to wisdom and keeps us from harmful decisions. This is no different than a parent who tells a child to not touch a hot iron. The rule isn’t there to appease Mom and Dad; it is meant to keep the child safe! It is the same with the law of the Lord.
  • Not only was this something great for Israel to appreciate, this is something for Christians to appreciate as well. The Lord’s treatment of Israel is mirrored in our relationship with Christ. We are also a chosen and holy nation (Ephesians 1:4; I Peter 2:9). The Lord has continued His theme of closeness to His people by sending his Son. Think about that. The Son of God came to Earth. The Son of God took His time to notice us and teach us how we ought to live. He gave His life for us. He listens when we pray. Nothing makes us deserving of such an intimate and loving treatment. As Moses says here, what people has ever existed that has a god this close? What nation has a god that cares so much about them as to give them such a righteous law and actually care about their wellbeing? The gods of the ancient times didn’t come close. The various things man worships today do not come close. Our Lord sustains us. The gods of today have to be sustained by us. Money runs out. Technology breaks. Television shows get cancelled. Our Lord pursues us and seeks our life. The things we worship today do not care about us. They suck our resources, time, and energy dry until we are completely empty. Our Lord answers prayer. What a magnificent Lord we have who desires to be so close to us and give us life! His rules and statutes are not cumbersome – life is found in them.
  • When the Lord’s closeness and righteous law better our lives, others that see this in our life will seek out the Lord as well. How else can the world know about the Lord’s great wisdom and understanding except by seeing it exhibited through his people? I Kings 10 tells us how the Queen of Sheba came to hear the wisdom Solomon had through the Lord. The text tells that she was so awestruck with his wisdom that she was breathless and overwhelmed. Notice I Kings 10:6–9, “And she said to the king, It was a true report that I heard in mine own land of thy acts and of thy wisdom. Howbeit I believed not the words, until I came, and mine eyes had seen it: and, behold, the half was not told me: thy wisdom and prosperity exceedeth the fame which I heard. Happy are thy men, happy are these thy servants, which stand continually before thee, and that hear thy wisdom. Blessed be the LORD thy God, which delighted in thee, to set thee on the throne of Israel: because the LORD loved Israel for ever, therefore made he thee king, to do judgment and justice.”
  • This passage is truly exciting. The fact that a woman who had never known the Lord came to know such a great testimony of Him because of the wisdom He gave Solomon should inspire us. We can cause the same reaction today. We can cause others who do not truly know the Lord to glorify the Lord because of the great wisdom He gives us, if we let Him by how we live out our life.
  • If we truly see that people are full of foolishness, one of the best ways we can instigate change is by passionately pursuing the Lord’s law and wisdom in our own hearts and the decisions we make. What a great opportunity we would have; but we must seek out to diligently live out and do the Word of God in our life in order to be that influence on others.

WE NEED TO BE DILIGENT STUDENTS OF THE WORD OF GOD (4:9 – Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons;) – Romans 2 is a reminder of how greatly Israel ended up wrecking this opportunity. Romans 2:2324 says “Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God? For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written.” Though Solomon’s wisdom was cause for praising the Lord, he was an exception in Israel. As opposed to causing the nations to praise the Lord, Israel’s hypocrisy and wickedness caused the nations to blaspheme Him. Though Moses just finished reminding Israel of their great opportunity for wisdom, the beginning of verse 6 says this opportunity only exists when they keep the Lord’s statutes. This stands as a grave warning to Israel and to us of the danger of forgetting to carefully obey the Lord.

  • If we are not diligent students of the Word of God we will eventually be a bad testimony of the Lord. We may cause others to backslide; we may even prevent others from getting saved by how we are living out our life. In order to not have this bad testimony we need to be diligently doing the Word of God with our life.
  • Just because the Lord cared for Israel so lovingly was not an excuse to not be careful to watch their souls with all diligence. We have great reason to rejoice because of the mercy and grace given us by the Lord, but that mercy is not a license for carelessness (Romans 6:1-2). Careful attention to the Lord’s statutes is laughed at and often ridiculed today. “Why are you so picky?” or “It’s all about rules to you.” May we never forget that we are saved by the mercy and grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? We must also never forget that we are saved by faith and not by works. We must remember that we are involved in a very serious fight to keep our hearts pure. Now is not the time to let our guard down. We must be alert and cognizant of the condition of our souls. We must diligently be watching and praying about our obedience.

WE NEED TO NOT FORGET PAST TEACHINGS AND PAST EXPERIENCE’S WITH GOD. (4:10-13 verse 10 – Specially the day that thou stoodest before the LORD thy God in Horeb, when the LORD said unto me, Gather me the people together, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children.)– Keep past experiences and past teachings in mind, dwell on them from time to time and pass the knowledge of those experiences unto your children.

  • “And that they may teach their children.” The key to all of this is they not only practice these things themselves, but that they teach their children to do so as well. They were to continue to tell the story of the day the Lord met them on Sinai in flashes of lightning and thunder. They were to continue to teach them the fear of the Lord. This is the biggest thing missing from Christians today is a healthy fear of the Lord. Fear (reverential respect and awe) was the foundation of Israel’s relationship with the Lord, so Moses tells them to continue to spread that fear through their children. The reason why many young people are unafraid to rebelliously speak and act as they desire is because they have no fear. They do not fear their parents and they do not fear the Almighty God either. If you fear the Lord like you should, you will act in a respectful manner to your parents like you should. (Job 28:28 – And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.)
  • Certainly we must teach children and young people of the grace and mercy of the Lord, but if they have nothing to fear – what does grace and mercy save them from? It is impossible to appreciate the Lord’s love and mercy without having good biblical fear. People do not naturally fear the Lord. Fear is taught. It is taught in Bible stories like what happened at Sinai and Baal-peor. It is taught through a loving rod of correction. If the fear of God is not taught to children, then the fear of the Lord will stop.

IN CONCLUSION: God’s demands are made and they stand firm. His authority must not be challenged, and to reject it means eternal death. But the same God who demands perfection supplies the perfect solution. In Jesus Christ the Law of God is kept for us. In Christ, His righteous will be imputed to us. In Christ, the Law is fulfilled. Each stipulation, each aspect in ways we could never imagine perfecting, Christ did it for us. He suffered for our breaking of the Law; He credits to us His obedience. All we have to do to get started on our journey of doing the Word of God, to get started on our journey to the promised land of our life, is to accept by faith what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for us and call on Him to be our Savior. (Romans 10:9,10 & 13 – That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.)

Hearken… TO DO Them – part 1

(Deuteronomy 4:1-14)

Deuteronomy 4:1 “Now therefore hearken, O Israel, unto the statutes and unto the judgments, which I teach you, for to do them, that ye may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers giveth you.”

God in this passage demands our diligent attention to His Word and our diligence in doing His Word in our life. God wants us to be attentive to the reading, preaching, and teaching of His Word whenever it occurs. God is reminding us of His authority over us and our obligation as His children, if we are saved, to be living out and doing the Word of God with our life.

INTRODUCTION: “Hearken….to do them” – Moses having laid before the Israelites the law and teachings of the Lord for their nation, calls upon the whole assembly, in the most earnest and serious manner, to consider what influence these teachings and laws ought to have upon their conduct and practice. He tells them here, that doing the Word of God should render them punctually obedient to the laws of God, and very cautious and wary of offending Him, either by the addition to His Word by works, ceremonies, superstitious rites or the flat-out altering of His Word. Moses is teaching here that the absolute condition of their peaceful and happy enjoyment of their life lies in how they respond to, and live out the Word of God with their life. In our text, Moses emphasizes the importance of doing the law of the Lord that had already been poorly kept by this new generation.

WHY DO THEM? – “That ye may live” (4:1) – Jesus’ words serve as an appropriate consideration about doing the Word of God in our life.  John 14:15, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” True love for our Lord listens to the grave warning given by Moses: to be careful! We must watch our souls with all diligence our entire lives. It is not a blind obedience. Moses is about to teach them. So why do them?

  • Because – Understanding is necessary if obedience is to be rendered. God’s authority is given in the context of education with a view to application, as God’s servant, Moses, will teach so that they may do. Just hearing the law is not sufficient. Hearing must be in order to do or live out our knowledge in actual practice in our life.
  • Because – Though culture may tell us to talk, dress, and conduct ourselves one way, hearts that truly love the Lord seek to influence the culture with His ways. We must not allow culture to overcome God’s Word in our hearts as it did with Israel! If we will take care to remember the fear of the Lord our entire lives, we will be further reminded of the importance of not growing slack.
  • Because – The Word of the Lord is not a burdensome thing to keep. His ways are full of life. When His statutes teach us His wisdom, it provides the opportunity for others to see and hear of the Lord’s wisdom. How merciful is our Lord to always grant forgiveness to those who are repentant. May we learn a greater passion for doing the statutes of our Lord. (Colossians 3:23 – And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;)

WE ARE COMMANDED NOT TO ALTER THE WORD OF GOD. “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it…” (4:2 – Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.)Why are we commanded not to change the Word of God?

  • Because – We need the pure and complete Word of God so we know how to live and worship God the right way.
  • Because – We can see what happens to those in the past that have not “hearken…. to do” the will and Word of God. (4:3)
  • Because – The Law of God is the ultimate Authority – and it is the ultimate source of our freedom. With law there is also to be order. The two go together. The structured authority entailed in the legal codes in our society is what attempts to gives us harmony and peace. There is a connection we often overlook between authority and freedom. It is the authority of the law of the land which prescribes and protects our freedom. For there to be freedom, there must be authority. The same holds true in our spiritual life, for there to be freedom from the bondage of sin there must be an authority acknowledged in our life and there must be laws and teachings (the Bible) that we live our life by.
  • Because – Our life depends on us obeying and doing the will of God with our life. In verse 3 Moses uses the incident at Baal Peor (Numbers 25:1-9) to illustrate from the Israelites own history that their very lives depended on obeying and doing the Word of God. Only those who hold fast the Word of God with their life will live the blessed filled life God has planned for them. (II Timothy 1:13 – Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.)

WE NEED TO CLEAVE UNTO THE LORD (4:4 – But ye that did cleave unto the LORD your God are alive every one of you this day.) – Those that rejected God’s authority were denied the freedom of the land. They died as slaves to their own unbelief. But despite their unbelief, God was still going to be faithful to His promise.

  • Central to our understanding of freedom, to living the lives God desires of us, to enjoying all the benefits of life, it is crucial that we hear, follow, and do the decrees and laws of God. God has not left us in the dark to determine how we are to live. We are not bound to an eternity of determining what is right and wrong. We are free from the pursuit of seeking God, for He has sought us and told us who He is and what He desires of us. His authority revealed in His law is our freedom.
  • How do you cleave unto the Lord? – By loving His Word, by doing His Word. The Word of God is our life as Christians, and obeying God’s Word keeps us in fellowship with Him. God’s people need to be careful about not becoming too friendly with the world; this can lead to loving the world, letting ourselves be molded by the standards and wickedness of the world. This kind of lifestyle lived out by a Christian invites the chastening of the Lord into their life. (Hebrews 10:30-31 – For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.)
  • We need to be cleavers to the Word of God and not leavers of the Word of God and its teachings.

WE NEED TO LIVE OUT THE KNOWLEDGE WE HAVE ABOUT GOD IN OUR LIFE AND DO IT. (4:5-6 – Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.) Why do we need to do this?

  • Because – we have been taught it and commanded to do so by God.
  • Because – it will help lead you to wisdom and understanding. (4:6a)
  • Because – living out and doing the Word of God will give you a good reputation to those around you.(4:6b)
  • Because – Time is short. There is an important reminder in these verses for us, with regard to the authority of God’s Law, with respect to those who have heard and are following God’s commands and those who are not.
  • Because – Of the twofold benefit that happens when we are obedient to God. Our obedience shows wisdom and understanding. When others see that, they see the character of God. Wisdom is found in conformity to God’s authority. We get the benefit of being seen to possess wisdom and understanding, and God gets the benefit of a good Christian testimony on display for others to see and for God to use as a tool to help bring others to Him.

CONCLUSION: Deuteronomy 4:14 “And the LORD commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and judgments, that ye might do them in the land whither ye go over to possess it.” We need to always be doing the will of God. We need to learn His Word, learn His teachings, learn His principles, and we need to keep all that we have learned and to do what we know.

Moses’ encouragement to Israel is to make sure they listen closely to the statutes and rules he commands them. They must remember to obey with exactness. This should not be confused with perfect law keeping. The entire reason the Mosaic sacrificial system was in place was to cover the sins of the people. Moses’ specific concern is seen in verse two. He does not want them to add to or take from the command of the Lord. Why is it so important that they keep the entire law in this way? Notice verse one. It is so they can continue to have life and take possession of the promised land. We too can take possession of the promised land God has planned for us. We, as the Lord instructed the Israelites to do, must do the Word of God in our life. We must live it out, keep it, know it and share it with others. Then by doing so we will open up our lives to see the promised life God has planned for His obedient children.



(Mark 7:6-9, 20-23)

Mark 7:6-8 – “He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.”

Philip Doddridge said this about this passage “Notwithstanding all your talk, then, of strictness in religion,  yet as this appears to be expressive of your real character, the doom of hypocrites belongs to you; and God may justly affirm of such, (as it is added there,) “In vain do they worship me, while they teach doctrines or lessons {that are} merely human inventions and injunctions, being only the precepts of men, that have no stamp of the divine authority upon them,” which yet they would insist upon as necessary parts of religion, and would impose them on the consciences of others.

We need to make sure our heart is where God wants it to be. We need to make sure our heart is focused on God and making ourselves more like Him. The outward appearances of man, the way we dress, the way we act, the things we do are all important, but the most important is to have our heart right with God. Where is your heart? Is it right with God? Being hypocritical, pretending to be right with God and considering and judging others to not be right with God just because they are not adhering to the same religious checklist you are adhering to, like the Pharisees were doing to Jesus, is wrong and spoken strongly against by our Lord in this passage. Where is your heart? Is it close to Jesus or far from Him?

INTRODUCTION: Where is your heart? Our heart can be many different places but the right place. Is your heart centered on God and His will or is it centered on yourself and your will, your thoughts, your desires? Our Lord Jesus says in this passage “For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:” Is some of this what is going on in your heart today? The heart is an interesting place, it can be a most evil, wicked, and defiled place but you can put on a good front and fool people as to the true nature of your heart. What is your heart condition today? Where is your heart? (Jeremiah 17:9 – The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?)

“HEART IS FAR FROM ME” vs.6The Lord Jesus in this verse reproves them for their hypocrisy. They were pretending to honor God with their life, but internally they were living very wickedly.

“As a corrupt fountain sends forth corrupt streams, so does a corrupt heart send forth corrupt reasoning, corrupt appetites and passions, and all those wicked words and actions which are produced by them.” – Matthew Henry.

  • Where your heart is at spiritually will eventually show itself, in your choice of words, in your actions, in your attitude or other areas of your life.
  • A carnal mind and heart, a heart full of sinful thoughts and desires renders your spirit unfit for communication with God. If you continue in this state of sin and defilement in your heart it will produce hardness in your heart and a stain on your conscience. The longer you let you heart remain away from God the harder it will be to get close to God again. (Proverbs 28:14 – Happy is the man that feareth alway: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief.)

A HEART THAT WANTS ITS OWN WAY vs.7The Pharisees here wanted to do things their own way. They wanted to work out their religion their own way not Gods way. One of the biggest problems man faces is a heart that wants its own way. Christians will acknowledge God’s sovereignty in all areas of life and the world except their own hearts. Who is the sovereign of your heart is it the Great I AM, (Yahweh) GOD or do you say “I am” the sovereign of my own heart. Do you humble yourself and surrender yourself to the control of the Lord or do you think you should be calling all the shots in your life.

Dr. Bob Jones Sr. said “The Devil did not tempt Adam and Eve to steal, to lie, to kill, to commit adultery; he tempted them to live independent of God.”  (Isaiah 53:6 – All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way;)

  • Man’s heart wants its own way in opposition to Gods way. Let’s look at what the Bible says about mans “own way”.
  • In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6
  • So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: and they walked in their own counsels.” Psalm 81:12
  • “Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.” Proverbs 3:7
  • “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.” Proverbs 12:15
  • “He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered.” Proverbs 28:26
  • “Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!” Isaiah 5:21
  • “Be not wise in your own conceits.” Romans 12:16
  • This “own way” tendency this “I am” sovereign of my own heart not God, this attitude, this heart condition is the culprit in our hearts not being near unto God like they are supposed to be and should be. (Acts 8:22 – Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.)

A HEART THAT PUTS “ASIDE THE COMMANDMENT OF GOD” vs.8Christ in this verse is criticizing the reinterpretation of the commands of God to fit your own thoughts or ways of living or being “religious”. Christ preached against putting more emphasis on the traditions of men to the ignoring and downright twisting of God’s word to fit them.

  • The emphasis of our life should be on our heart and living out God’s word because out of the wicked imaginations of the heart is a man’s life defiled. (Mark 7:20 – And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.)
  • The emphasis of our life should not be on what men say if that is against God’s word, but it should be on what God commands us and instructs us to do in His word. (Mark 7:9 – And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition)
  • Jesus made it clear to us in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) that real holiness is a matter of our inward affections and attitudes and not just our outward appearances, actions, associations, religious checklists or traditions we keep.

The pious Pharisees thought they were holy because they obeyed the Law and avoided external defilement. Jesus taught that a person who obeys the Law externally can still break the Law in his heart, and that external “defilement” has little connection with the condition of the inner person” – Warren W. Wiersbe

  • An example of looking externally pure but being internally sinful is what Jesus had to say on the subject of adultery – “But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart” Matthew 5:28
  • Where is your heart? Is it thinking pure thoughts? Or is it thinking wicked sinful thoughts?
  • You need to be internally what you pretend to be externally. We all need to be genuine Christians.

“Many of us who profess to be Christians are so busy with the mechanics of our religion that we have no time left for the spiritual part of it.” –Martin Luther

A HEART THAT WORSHIPS GODTrue worship must come from the heart and not from mans ideas or traditions. True heartfelt worship is directed by God’s word. God’s word working in our hearts leads to right worship and right living for our Lord. Our worship must always be heartfelt and heart genuine or we will be “Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition,” Mark 7:13a.

People who revere man-made traditions above the Word of God eventually lose the power of God’s Word in their lives. No matter how devout they may appear, their hearts are far from God.” Warren W. Wiersbe

  • True holiness is a matter of the heart. It centers on a right relationship with God through our faith in Him. We need to trust Him by faith for our salvation, our worship of Him and for our everyday lives. (Hebrews 11:1 – Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen)

“An excellent description of faith is by the effects, because it represents things which are but yet in hope, and sets as it were before our eyes things that are invisible.” Geneva Bible Notes 1599

  • There is scarcely any verse of the New Testament that is more important than this, because it states what the nature of all true faith is. Eternal life depends on the existence and exercise of faith, (Ephesians 2:8 –For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:) and therefore it is vitally important for an accurate understanding or what true faith is.
  • God wants our love, obedience and worship to come from the heart. He does not want it if is not genuine. It order to please God with our service for Him and to make it count for an eternal reward it needs to come from our heart. (Deuteronomy 6:5 – And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.)

THE HEART OF MEN (Mark 7:21-23 – For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.)

  • The heart of man is not pure and holy and righteous by nature. We are born sinners. Our hearts are sinful by nature. (Genesis 6:5 – And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually) We have to be diligent regarding the whereabouts of our heart. We need to make sure we are keeping our hearts pure. We need to make sure we are keeping our hearts immersed in the study of the Word of God daily. We need to fill our hearts with the teachings and preaching’s of the Word of God. Do not be filling your hearts with the filth of the world. Don’t let your hearts become like the world. We should be striving to be more like Christ every day.
  • The Bible says man’s heart is deceitful and wicked and not to be trusted. Some people will say “I have to follow my heart” you need to be following the Lord and not your heart. Your heart cannot be trusted. (Ecclesiastes 9:3 – This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event unto all: yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead.)

MANS HEART EXAMINED BY GOD (I Samuel 16:7 – But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.)

  • What does the Lord see when he examines your heart? Does he see a heart that is right with Him, does he see a Christian on fire for Him, does he see a heart with all known sin confessed, does he see a heart that works hard at avoiding sin? Or does he see a heart that is full of pride, rebellion, anger, lust, sinful thoughts a heart that is filthy and full of dirty rotten sin? (Proverbs 5:21 – For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings.)
  • We need to surrender our hearts over to the Lord. Confess our sins to Him. All the things we need to get right; get them right with the Lord. Don’t let anything be between you and the Savior. Get your hearts right, keep them right, guard them with all your might. Where is your heart today? Is it in the will of God? Is it in the hand of God?


“What does the Bible say about legalism? How can a Christian avoid falling into the trap of legalism?”

Answer: The word “legalism” does not occur in the Bible. It is a term Christians use to describe a doctrinal position emphasizing a system of rules and regulations for achieving both salvation and spiritual growth. Legalists believe in and demand a strict literal adherence to rules and regulations. Doctrinally, it is a position essentially opposed to grace. Those who hold a legalistic position often fail to see the real purpose for law, especially the purpose of the Old Testament law of Moses, which is to be our “schoolmaster” or “tutor” to bring us to Christ (Galatians 3:24 – Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.).

True believers can be legalistic. But we are instead instructed to be gracious to one another: “Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.” Romans 14:1. Sadly, there are those who feel so strongly about non-essential doctrines, traditions and rules that they will run others out of their fellowship, criticize them for not fulfilling a religious checklist test, and not even allowing the expression of another viewpoint. That, too, is legalism.

Demands of legalism. Many legalistic believers today make the error of demanding unqualified adherence to their own biblical interpretations and even to their own traditions. For example, there are those who feel that to be spiritual one must simply check off all the boxes on some sort of fundamental Christian check list. The truth is fulfilling these checklists are no guarantee of spirituality, and remember we learned that God looks on the inward man, in our hearts, not on the outward man to see our true spiritual condition. (Mark 7:8-9 – For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.)

The apostle Paul warns us of legalism. (Colossians 2:20-23 – Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances, (Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men? Which things have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.) Legalists may appear to be righteous and spiritual, but legalism ultimately fails to accomplish God’s purposes because it is an outward performance instead of an inward change.

Avoiding the trap of legalism. To avoid falling into the trap of legalism, we can start by holding fast to the words of the apostle John, “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” John 1:17 and remembering to be gracious, especially to our brothers and sisters in Christ. “Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.” Romans 14:4. “But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.” Romans 14:10.

A word of caution is necessary. While we need to be gracious to one another and tolerant of disagreement over disputable matters, we cannot accept heresy. We are exhorted to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints (Jude 3). If we remember these guidelines and apply them in love and mercy, we will be safe from both legalism and heresy. “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” 1 John 4:1.

IN CONCLUSION: Where is your heart? Our heart can be many different places but the right place. Where your heart is at spiritually will eventually show itself, in your choice of words, in your actions, in your attitude or other areas of your life. One of the biggest problems man faces is a heart that wants its own way. Christians will acknowledge God’s sovereignty in all areas of life and the world except their own hearts. Who is the sovereign of your heart is it the Great I AM, (Yahweh) GOD or do you say “I am” the sovereign of my own heart.

You need to be internally what you pretend to be externally. We all need to be genuine Christians. True holiness is a matter of the heart. It centers on a right relationship with God through our faith in Him. It does not center on the outward appearance or actions but on the inward condition of the heart. Though with a heart that is right with God our outward appearance and actions will be changed and we will have visibly good testimony to those around us.

Don’t be guilty of legalism. Don’t be guilty of imposing your opinion on others or judging others based on your opinion on a matter. That is what the Pharisees did in the New Testament and we examined what Jesus had to say about them in our text, it was not a flattering account, but rather a stern condemnation. (Mark 7:6 & 9 – He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.)

We have to be diligent regarding the whereabouts of our heart. We need to make sure we are keeping our hearts pure. Make the decision to dedicate your heart to the Lord, to surrender your heart to the service of the Lord. Confess your faults and sins to the Lord and set your heart on a new right path in the light of the Lord.



Proverbs 20:1 – “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”

Wine and alcohol not only lead to foolish behavior, but they have led even good men (such as Noah and Lot) into folly and sin; since wine and strong drink darken the reason and bring the soul under the control of excitement and passion, and by that control prepare it for foolishness and wickedness of every kind, no wise man will ever give himself up to the influence of them.

Drunkenness is foolishness epitomized. The Bible tells us that wine is a mocker and strong drink is raging. To those that decide to take of it, it will mock you, it will make a fool of you, and it will promise you satisfaction which it can never deliver. It will smile upon you at first, but at the last it bites.  It is raging in the body, damages your health. Wine will mock a man, make him look like a fool or rage like a madman. Drunkenness, which pretends to be a sociable thing, makes men unfit for society, it makes them abusive with their tongues and can make them physically abusive to those around them. It makes men act outrageous and act out sinful passions. (Proverbs 23:29-30 – Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine.)

Thomas Haweis speaking on this topic said “Drunkenness is a vice most odious; exposes a man to be the jest and sport of others; brings him into broils: disorders his body with feverish heat; and though the liquor at first seems to exhilarate his spirits, he is deceived thereby; it drowns his reason and his conscience together, and tends to ruin of body and soul both here and hereafter.”

***I am a Christian and I don’t drink. I am a Youth Director and the son of an alcoholic and the nephew of alcoholics. I need to make that disclaimer right up front. Although it makes me a little biased on the subject, it also gives me real world experience to draw on when teaching on this matter. In other words I know what I am talking about in the statements I make. ***

Some of the worst “shudder moments” of my life have been watching men I love while under the influence of alcohol.  I have witnessed extreme self destructing moments in the lives of men in my family because of alcohol. You will never be able tell me it’s God’s best for a Christian to drink, or it’s OK for a Christian to drink socially. I repeat, you will never be able to tell me that or convince me of that. Common sense tells you it is wrong, and the Bible teaches that it is wrong.

We are living in a church age where drinking has become the in thing to do for some. Christian young adults post pictures of their signature drink on Facebook, or they talk about what a great night they don’t remember on social media. Middle-aged Christian’s may name drop their favorite brand of this alcoholic drink or that one to impress their worldly minded friends. I have even recently heard of some pastors that drank. Then I later heard of one of those pastors losing his ministry and family over his alcoholism.

This lesson is not only a biblical defense on the topic of Christians and why they should not drink alcohol, but it is a heartfelt plea. I humbly ask you to put aside any knee jerk, pro the right to drink alcohol arguments that you may have ever heard, or made, and prayerfully consider what the Bible says on the topic and what just plain common sense teaches us on the topic.


  1. Alcohol is a depressant. Anything that depresses should be avoided at all costs.
  2. Alcohol skews judgment.
  3. Alcohol leaves people worse, not better.
  4. What I do in moderation, my children will do in excess.
  5. Even the unsaved know Christians shouldn’t drink. Bible in one hand, beer in the other—any lost person could point this out as a confusing contradiction.
  6. Alcohol doesn’t bring us closer to the Lord when we drink, but further away.
  7. Show me a family for whom alcohol has made a positive difference in their lives. You won’t be able to.
  8. I have never heard anyone say, “Wow, that gin and tonic made me feel so Christ like!”
  9. Alcohol makes it much harder for someone to practice self-control.
  10. Alcohol is a legal mind-altering drug.
  11. Alcohol is addictive.
  12. Many regrets are associated with alcohol.
  13. No one has ever said, “If only I had taken a drink, things wouldn’t have gotten out of control.”
  14. Alcohol causes people to act in ways they normally wouldn’t.
  15. Alcohol kills brain cells.
  16. Alcohol is a counterfeit and provides a false peace.
  17. Alcohol is a waster of: money, gifts, talents, futures and so on.
  18. Alcohol leads to really bad behavior. It is a factor in 50 percent of violent crimes.
  19. Alcohol has ruined many, many marriages.
  20. If you don’t start drinking, you’ll never have to stop.
  21. Alcohol lowers your resolve to resist temptation.
  22. Alcohol = Brokenness (broken lives, health, dreams, etc.)
  23. When the world sees a Christian drinking, it sends the message that Jesus isn’t enough.
  24. Social drinking? How about social pornography or social heroin use or social lying or social adultery?
  25. Alcohol fills your mind with impure thoughts.

NEXT LETS LOOK AT 25 BIBLICAL EXAMPLES & TEACHINGS ON WHY CHRISTIANS SHOULD NOT DRINK ALCOHOL OF ANY KIND – One has only to examine the Bible to find abundant references condemning and demonstrating drinking as evil. Below is a summary of Scriptures about this topic:

  1. Genesis 19:30-38– In this instance drinking resulted in Lot’s debauchery of his own daughters.
  2. Leviticus 10:9 “Do not drink wine nor strong drink…” here is an express command not to drink.
  3. Deuteronomy 21:20 – Drinking leads to stubbornness, rebellion, and gluttony by young men; and brings dishonor to parents.
  4. Deuteronomy 29:2-6 – Abstinence assures better knowledge of God.
  5. 1 Samuel 1:14-15 – Hannah, an example of all honored motherhood, practiced total abstinence.
  6. II Samuel 13:28-29 – Amnon, while in a drunken brawl, was murdered by his brother Absalom.
  7. II Samuel 11:13 – Only by strong drink could David lead Uriah into a trap.
  8. Proverbs 4:17 – Through drinking the wicked become violent. They are bad enough at best, but drink leads them to violence.
  9. Proverbs 20:1 – No wise man will take wine or liquor.
  10. Proverbs 23:21 – Strong drink leads to poverty.
  11. Proverbs 23:29-30 – Strong drink produces woe, sorrow, contentions, babbling, wounds without cause, redness of eyes.
  12. Proverbs 23:31-32 “Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.” – We are urged not to even look upon intoxicating beverages, let alone drink them.
  13. Proverbs 23:33 – It fills men’s minds with adulterous and impure thoughts.
  14. Proverbs 23:34 – It brings on insecurity.
  15. Proverbs 23:35 – It is habit-forming; one drink always calls for another.
  16. Isaiah 22:13 – Drinking and carnal behavior go together.
  17. Isaiah 28:7 – Drinking brings on spiritual blindness.
  18. Daniel 1:5, 8, 16; 10:3 – God honored Daniel because he abstained from the king’s wine.
  19. Amos 6:6 – Drinkers tend not to be concerned about God, nor about the welfare of other people.
  20. Hosea 4:11 – Strong drink and immorality go hand in hand.
  21. Luke 1:15 – Greatness of John the Baptist linked with his total abstinence.
  22. I Corinthians 6:10 – No drunkard shall inherit the Kingdom of God.
  23. Galatians 5:21 – Revelers in drunkenness shall not inherit the Kingdom of God.
  24. Ephesians 5:18 “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;” – Here is a direct command not to become drunk.
  25. I Thessalonians 5:6-8 – Sobriety, as opposed to drunkenness, is celebrated and encouraged upon the Thessalonians.

THE TEMPTATION OF ALCOHOL – Lots of people you may know consume alcohol of some variety. I have seen it consumed by several different family members in my life and I have seen lots of destructive behavior and lots of destruction because of it. Alcohol is a strong temptation and once it has its hooks in you it is one of the hardest things to get away from. First, never take the first sip. Never try it. But if you are tempted by it remember what the Bible says about temptation in I Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”

  • The demands of life may tempt you to seek gratification in alcohol and other things. We must be on high alert for this temptation. The enemy uses “opportune times” to draw us away from God (see Luke 4:13). The line is so thin that it is often hard to determine when we cross over. I believe that total abstinence from alcohol should be practiced by all Christians, especially if they have members of their immediate family that drink often and in excess; they could be more at risk for alcoholism. The Bible teaches a principle of the sins of the fathers being visited onto the 3rd and 4th The influence of the lifestyle lived by fathers onto their prodigy has been scientifically proven to exist (it is called epigenetics) and it is passed on and extends to the 3rd and 4th generations just like the Bible said. (Exodus 34:7bvisiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.) So if you had a father, a grandfather or even a great grandfather that was an alcoholic you could be more susceptible to becoming one too if you were to ever take that first sip.
  • Social media influences people on a broad scale. In Jesus’ day, society was much more isolated—no Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. We have no idea how many people are affected or tempted by social media posts. We can foster temptation by the things we post and we can be tempted into making life altering decisions by viewing others posts. We need to call on the Lord to help us resist all temptations no matter the form they take or the avenue they use to get to us. (Matthew 26:41 – Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.) We need to be vigilant about resisting temptations like alcohol consumption.

“In Christ alone there is deliverance from man’s tortured thoughts and freedom from the sordid habits which are destroying so many people. Why does the Bible so clearly denounce drunkenness? – Because it is an enemy of human life. Anything that is against a person’s welfare, God is against.” – Rev. Billy Graham

THE DESTRUCTIVENESS OF ALCOHOL – In August of 2016 Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte was flying high, just winning a gold medal, but then news broke that he was robbed at gunpoint. We soon learned this report was not true, what we now know to have happened is he was under the influence of alcohol and vandalized a gas station and then while still under the influence of alcohol talked to a reporter and made up the story of being robbed at gunpoint. He was made out to be a liar, he caused a bit of an international incident, he disgraced himself, he embarrassed his teammates and his country, and he ruined his reputation, all because of the influence that alcohol had on him that one evening in Rio de Janeiro. This brings us back to our opening verse Proverbs 20:1 “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.”

  • Alcohol is destructive. God is never for anything that could destroy Alcohol, unfortunately, is also promoted and elevated as a normal/sophisticated activity in society today; even among some Christians this statement is true. It is also expensive, addictive and enslaving. People get hooked by America’s number one legal drug. And just like all illegal drugs, alcohol finds its way into the body, the bloodstream and the brain of the user/abuser.
  • I had two uncles whose lives were damaged by alcohol. The exception you say? Hardly. Alcohol damaging or ruining lives is the norm where it is concerned. It is not what they wanted when they dreamed of their futures when they were in their 20s. But praise God, they were wonderfully delivered in their 60s when the grace of God became real to them. My one uncle, especially, his salvation testimony was amazing, and can you imagine what a strange coincidence they both had, they both became total abstainers from alcohol and got their lives back by the power and direction of the Holy Spirit! – Alcohol has no place in the life of a Christian who is right with God!

IN CONCLUSION: Matthew Henry said this about the use of alcohol “It seems hard to believe that men of the greatest abilities, as well as the ignorant, should render themselves fools and madmen, merely for the taste or excitement produced by strong liquors.Drunkenness is foolishness epitomized. The Bible tells us that wine is a mocker and strong drink is raging. To those that decide to take of it, it will mock you, it will make a fool of you, and it will promise you satisfaction which it cannot deliver. Alcohol is a strong temptation and once it has its hooks in you it is one of the hardest things to get away from. First, never take the first sip. Never try it. But if you are tempted by it remember what the Bible says about temptation in I Corinthians 10:13.  Plain common sense teaches us to abstain from all alcohol, and the Bible clearly teaches us to abstain from it. It is destructive, it ruins live, it ruins reputations, it ruins relationships, it destroys your health and it can kill innocent victims on the road. Stay away from Satan’s beverage and make it a conviction you will never waver from, that you will NEVER drink any alcoholic beverage in your life; but if you have already, God is the God of forgiveness and the God of the second chance. Seek out his forgiveness and deliverance now, and set your conviction that from now on you will never partake of alcohol again. (I John 1:9 -If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.)



the doctrine of Balaam (Revelation 2:14) – Balaam enticed the Israelites to attend an idolatrous feast and into committing immorality with the Midianites in Numbers chapter 25. (Revelation 2:14 – But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.) – The doctrine of Balaam is the lie that it is permissible for saved people to live like unsaved and that God’s grace gives us the right to disobey God’s law.

The church is the bride of Christ. If you are a Christian you are part of the church and make up part of the bride of Christ. If you are a Christian living in sin and living like an unsaved person you are in effect playing the harlot to the bridegroom of the Church which is Christ. (Revelation 19:6-9 – And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.)·

Why as a Christian would you want to see how worldly you can live; you should instead be striving to live as Christ like as you can! Any teaching that makes it easy and permissible to sin is false doctrine. The Word of God was given to us to help enable us to live holy and sanctified lives. (Titus 1:1 – Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;)

We as Christians should not be seeking to see how far we can push the envelop into a sinful lifestyle. We should not be sinning freely just because we are under grace. We should not think we can do what we want since we have fire insurance now. We should be doing the exact opposite! We should be living for Christ and seeking to be living a sanctified and separated life unto Him; and not seeking to live just like the world and look just like the world. Some Christians need to grow up a little and just start showing some basic respect and reverence to the Lord of lords and the King of kings. (Colossians 3:1-2 – If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.)



Leviticus 9:23-10:2  “And Moses and Aaron went into the tabernacle of the congregation, and came out, and blessed the people: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto all the people. And there came a fire out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar the burnt offering and the fat: which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces. And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not. And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.”

THE TRAGEDY OF THEIR LIVES – One of the most tragic statements can ever be made about someone’s life is “What could have been” – This is what can be said about Nadab and Abihu.  They could have done so much for the Lord, they could have set a great example, they could have been remembered in their family and history as great men and great men of God; but they are not. They became part of the long line of the “What could have been’s” – They had it all at one point, and then died an early death because of sinful mistakes. What remained of their lives was wasted. Let’s look at what they had going for them.·

  • They were the two oldest sons of Aaron, nephews of Moses, they were among the privileged to see God and live to tell about it. (Exodus 24:9-11 – Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel: And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness. And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God, and did eat and drink.)
  • God called them out for appointment to the priesthood and ministry to Him. (Exodus 28:1 – And take thou unto thee Aaron thy brother, and his sons with him, from among the children of Israel, that he may minister unto me in the priest’s office, even Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, Aaron’s sons.
  • After this calling out by God, God Himself participated in their ordination service to the priesthood and His ministry. (Leviticus 9:23-24 – And Moses and Aaron went into the tabernacle of the congregation, and came out, and blessed the people: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto all the people. And there came a fire out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar the burnt offering and the fat: which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces.)

ONE SEEMINGLY SMALL ACT (OR SIN) RUINED EVERYTHING – Don’t make the same mistakes that Nadab and Abihu did in throwing away a promising future for one moment, for one act, for one lapse of judgment. Always, always, always do things God’s way. Always put God first in your life and in your decision making. Establish convictions on what you will and will not do in certain situations based on God’s word and stick with those convictions. There is a famous song that states “I did it my way”; what a horrible statement this is that can lead to a life of ruin. We should hopefully never be able to say that about our lives. We should always strive to always do things God’s way and never our own way. (Galatians 6:7-8 – 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.)

No sooner had they enjoyed the great blessing of God consecrating them for His service in a glorious moment in front of the whole nation of Israel, that then Nadab and Abihu ruin everything. Just as Adam and Eve had it all in the Garden of Eden, and chose to disobey God in their pride, so too Nadab and Abihu ruin their lives and bring great grief upon countless other lives by their sin.

THE EFFECT OF YOUR SIN – Your sin does not just effect you, it also effect’s everyone else in your life too. Psalm 119:136 was spoken in reference to the sins of others “Rivers of waters run down mine eyes, because they keep not thy law.”Doing things your way, your mistakes, your sins don’t just effect you, they affect everyone that loves and cares about you; they also affect all those who in the future you could have ministered too if it were not for those mistakes. Just as fire from God had consumed the animal sacrifice, it now fell upon Nadab and Abihu and consumed them because of their tragic sin and mistake.


Biblical Instruction on Gender Identity

Deuteronomy 22:5 “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.”

Moses gave us some foundational and relevant instruction on a hot topic of discussion happening today. Moses in his writings in the Pentateuch, gave the world God’s foundational teachings and truths on this topic of gender identity and transgenderism.

INTRODUCTION: First, before we delve into this topic of transgenderism and gender identity, we have to establish what sources are used for truth. We have to establish that absolute truth, that absolute rights, and absolute wrongs do exist. Something’s are right or permitted to be done as long as they are in the bounds of God’s Word; and something’s are wrong and sinful to do. We have to acknowledge that there is sin in the world. We have to acknowledge that there are evil things in this world. We have to be willing to accept that certain acts committed by men are in fact evil in the sight of God and condemned as such by Him in His Word.

We have going on in the news today several examples of this topic that we are going to examine in light of God’s Word. We have the new bathroom policy implemented by Target stores – In our stores, we demonstrate our commitment to an inclusive experience in many ways. Most relevant for the conversations currently underway, we welcome transgender team members and guests to use the restroom or fitting room facility that corresponds with their gender identity.”  We also have in North Carolina the law designed to protect the privacy and safety of women and children while using the restroom by restricting people to using the bathroom that corresponds to their sex that is on their birth certificate. Since this North Carolina law has taken affect the state has been threatened and now sued by the federal government claiming the right of a transgender person to use the bathroom of their choice, trumps the right to privacy and safety of the other 99.7% of the population of the United States.

The Texas Attorney General in response to the bathroom policy of Target issued this statement – “As chief lawyer and law enforcement officer for the State of Texas, I ask that you provide the full text of Target’s safety policies regarding the protection of women and children from those who would use the cover of Target’s restroom policy for nefarious purposes,”. American Family Association President had this to say on this topic “Nearly everyone has a mother, wife, daughter or friend who is put in jeopardy by this policy …Predators and voyeurs would take advantage of the policy to prey on those who are vulnerable.” – As you can see, we live in a world that seems to have lost what historically most would have considered basic common sense. What is up is now down, what is right is now wrong, what was wrong is now right. The Bible warned us about this in Isaiah 5:20 “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” “Modern social righteousness often differs from the righteousness of the Bible. Someone has said: ‘A wrong deed is right if the majority of people declare it not to be wrong.’ By this principle we can see our standards shifting from year to year according to the popular vote!”Rev. Billy Graham. Hazen G. Werner, who served as a United Methodist bishop in Ohio, Hong Kong and Taiwan, once said this: “There is no more startling phenomenon in our day than the respectabilization of evil.” We are seeing this phenomenon taking place right before our eyes today. Today we are seeing things that were once generally accepted as being good, getting challenged over and over again. Governments and courts are redefining marriage and ruling that those desiring to live by Biblical standards are law breakers. So how does one know what is right and wrong in areas of morality, and specifically in the area of transgenderism? The answer I would argue is very simple; but we will first consider a few things.


Their feelings. – If it feels good to them it must be right. The Bible warns us against trusting our feelings. (Proverbs 14:12 – There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.). Others may say I have to follow my heart. The Bible also warns us against doing that as well. (Proverbs 28:26a – He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool:). Many people have destroyed their lives by trusting their feelings or following their heart. (Jeremiah 17:9 – The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?)

Their conscience – As the saying goes “Let your conscience be your guide” – But your conscience will not always be reliable, especially if you are not saved. A better saying would be to “Always let the Holy Spirit that lives in you be your guide”. An example of a conscience not being right is found in the life of Paul. He let his unsaved conscience guide him to persecute Christians. (Acts 26:9-11 – I verily thought with myself, that I ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth. Which thing I also did in Jerusalem: and many of the saints did I shut up in prison, having received authority from the chief priests; and when they were put to death, I gave my voice against them. And I punished them oft in every synagogue, and compelled them to blaspheme; and being exceedingly mad against them, I persecuted them even unto strange cities.)

Their friends – “Everyone else is doing it” – Remember everyone else in Noah’s day did not trust God and get on the Ark. How did that work out for them? Don’t use what everyone else does as your guide to morality but rather choose the right path and the narrow way that leads to a joyous life. (Matthew 7:13-14 – Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.)


Jesus has all authority in heaven and earth. (Matthew 28:18). Jesus has all authority in all areas, including areas of sexual morals and behavior. (Ephesians 4:21-24 – If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.)·         Jesus will one day judge all of mankind. (Acts 17:31 –  Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.)·         Jesus will use His Word as the standard to judge all men. (John 12:48 – He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.)

Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, guided what the Apostles wrote about morality in their writings.  (John 16: 12-13 – I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.) – The argument that says Jesus did not say anything about it does not hold water. Jesus used the Holy Spirit to author the entire Bible. The entire Bible is what Jesus said. (II Peter 1:21 – For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.)

This authority pertains to all areas including areas of morality. – Paul charged the church of Thessalonica regarding moral issues (I Thessalonians 4:1-8). Paul also addressed the churches of Ephesus and Corinth regarding issues of morality.

CONFUSION ABOUT MORALITY – With the sources of authority the world uses you can see why there would be confusion about morality. This brings me to my original point in order to get to where one can know for sure what is really right or what is really evil in the sight of God; one has to acknowledge that absolute truth does exist and the authority for establishing that absolute truth comes from Christ Jesus. The Christian need not to be confused about moral issues, because God, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:” II Peter 1:3. All need to know and accept by faith what Jesus said “…I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6. If God is not the author of confusion then who is? —- The father of lies – Satan; and he uses his lies to help cause the confusion of the transgender person. (John 8:44 – Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.)

SO WHAT ABOUT BEING TRANSEXUAL OR TRANSGENDER?  – Deuteronomy 22:5 says “The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.” We find also that Jesus spoke about this in Matthew 19:4 “And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,” – Notice Jesus said it is God that makes people male or female. They do not later get to decide or identify as a different gender, it is God that makes that determination and that determination was made before their conception.  This verse tells us clearly that women are not to dress in a way or present themselves in a way that would lead one to possibly confuse them with a man or present themselves in a masculine way, with masculine characteristics to their dress or hair. It also teaches us clearly that men are not to dress up like women or present themselves physically in a way that could lead them to be confused for a women or to dress or present themselves in an effeminate manner.

Charles Ryrie said this about this passage – “In that society male and female dress were similar, making distinctive styles for the sexes especially important to help prevent transvestism and homosexuality.” 

The British Family Bible Commentary states this about this verse in Deuteronomy “If there were no distinction of sexes, made by their habits, it would open a door to all manner of impurity: for which reason, if there were no other, this law was very wise and pious.”

It goes against nature to blur the distinction between male and female. When such blurring of these distinctions begins it creates confusion and opens the door to all kinds of unspeakable sins. It is not just a blurring of the distinctions between male and female but those who proclaim themselves as transgender or transsexual most likely are really suffering from a psychological disorder or the effects of sinfulness of some kind; because the Bible clearly teaches all people were made either male or female by God. God is not the author of confusion and thinking one is supposed to be the opposite sex of one’s birth is a clear indication of major confusion. (I Corinthians 14:33 – For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.)

AN EXAMPLE OF THE CONFUSION INVOLVED IN THE SIN OF TRANSGENDERISMThere was a man who had medical procedures in the 1980’s to become like a women. He has since reverted back to his biological gender as that of a man. He changed back because he said he found God and God redeemed him, forgave him and changed his life and gave him the hope he had been searching for. This man lived for 8 years as a woman. He said the physical change did nothing to resolve his mental and emotional struggles. He simply needed God and instead searched for fulfillment in other things. He said one day he had an epiphany, he was not transgender he realized he was simply a man with a psychological problem. He now says that no one is born transgender but people can suffer from psychological disorders brought about by sin. Either their own sin or by being abused sinfully by others usually at an early age. This man said “God designed man; He designed women, God will redeem the lives of people who struggle with gender identity issues just like I did. He redeemed my life, and I’ve been free from it as a result of that. I can see that changing genders, quite frankly is just pure foolishness.” God’s power, love and forgiveness can redeem sinful man; it can redeem the transgender person. We need to demonstrate God’s love and compassion to the transgender person, while making sure at the same time to not condone their sin. Remember, such were some of the church at Corinth and God changed their lives and used them to do great things for Him. (I Corinthians 6:11 – And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.)

SO IS TRANSGENDERISM ACCEPTABLE OR SHOULD WE ACCEPT IT? – NO, it is NOT acceptable in God’s sight. It should NOT be accepted. It is not intolerant to be against sin. It is loving to be against sin and proclaim sin as sin. It is wrong to remain silent on the issue when you know the truth; and you know the truth has the power to set men free from the shackles of sin and the shackles of the sin of transgenderism. (John 8:32 – And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.)

It is not acceptable because God created two distinct genders and roles at creation. (Genesis 1:27 – So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.)

It is not acceptable because nature teaches us that transgender conduct is sinful. (Romans 1:26-27 – For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.)

It is not acceptable because it disregards our God given gender. (Deuteronomy 22:5 – The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD thy God.)Ø  It is not acceptable because it promotes homosexuality. (Leviticus 18:22 – Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.)

It is not acceptable because it dishonors God’s creation. (Romans 1:24 – Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:)

It is not acceptable because it dishonors marriage and the home as ordained by God. (Genesis 2:23-24 – And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.)

IN CONCLUSION: Temptations and sin are not insurmountable. There is no sin too big or egregious that God cannot forgive and help the sinner to overcome it. We need to be ministry minded to those who are affected by this sin. Remember how God was able to use those that used to be affected by this sin in the church of Corinth to do service for Him. God can change lives and change hearts if the person affected by this sin will open up and let Him. It is that God forms our identity as male or female and He knows us before our birth. (Jeremiah 1:5 – Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.)

We just examined a foundational truth as found in the writings of Moses in Deuteronomy 22:5. This truth is a key teaching to be familiar with in light of current events going on in our country. We have to establish that absolute truth that absolute rights and absolute wrongs do exist. In order to get to where one can know for sure what is really right or what is really evil in the sight of God; one has to acknowledge that absolute truth does exist and the authority for establishing that absolute truth comes from Christ Jesus. We learned that this passage given to us through Moses clearly teaches women are not to dress in a way or present themselves in a way that would lead one to possibly confuse them with a man or present themselves in a masculine way and that men are not to dress up like women or present themselves physically in a way that could lead them to be confused for a women or to dress or present themselves in an effeminate manner.


Ezra 7:10 “For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord , and to do it , and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.”

To Ezra the law of God was more important than the teachings of the day. Gods Word took the preeminence in his life. Ezra sought to learn the law of the Lord. He searched the Scriptures seeking knowledge of God. Then he set about to teach and share what he had learned about God with others.

Is God’s Word that important to us? Are we purposely seeking to learn His Word so we can then share the good news of Christ with others? – Have you prepared your heart to learn of God and live for Him? Are you seeking out the truth of God’s Word? Are you seeking to grow spiritually?

The lack of spiritual growth in the life of a Christian is a very dangerous thing. It can lead you to live a life of foolishness, it can lead you to make dumb and dangerous decisions that can have drastic and life altering consequences for you. The lack of spiritual maturity is sad and dangerous because there may be blessings to be enjoyed in Christ that only the mature or maturing Christian can truly understand and enjoy. The spiritual immature do not fully understand or grasp the incredible importance of their standing with Christ. Staying spiritually immature is dangerous in that in leaves those people wide open to falling for the “wiles of the devil”.

Are you preparing your heart to seek and to learn the Word of God? Are you acting on what you have already learned of the Word of God? Are you teaching and sharing what you have learned from the Word of God with others?


WHOSE EYE’S IS IT RIGHT IN?8767-deep-blue-eye-design

I Chronicles 13:4 – “And all the congregation said that they would do so: for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people.”
Whose eyes is your actions right in?
Whose eye’s are your words right in?
Is it right in your own eyes?
Is it right in your friend’s eyes?
Is right in the world’s eyes?
Or is it right in the Lord’s eyes?
During the period of the Judges the ark of the Lord had been captured and carried away by the Philistines. Because possession of the ark caused them nothing but trouble they placed it on a cart and sent it back to Israel (I Samuel 6). From that time on it had remained at the house of Abinadab at Kirjath-jearim. Now we pick up where David is attempting to bring it back to his capital city of Jerusalem.
Who did David consult before he attempted this? – Did David enquire of the Lord like he had in time past? (I Chronicles 13:1 – And David consulted with the captains of thousands and hundreds, and with every leader.)
David consulted with every leader or person he could find to get advice from, but He left someone very important out of the equation. He did not ask God. (Proverbs 8:17 -I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.) How often do you talk with your friends, family or even co-workers about a decision you need to make but you don’t talk with God about it? We need to be getting our direction and guidance from the Lord. His will and His word need to take the preeminence in our life. Not our will or our friends will. (Colossians 1:18 – And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.)
Let’s look at David’s history about seeking the Lord out about decisions:
I Samuel 23:2 – Therefore David inquired of the LORD…
I Samuel 23:4 – Then David inquired of the LORD yet again….
I Samuel 30:8 – And David inquired at the LORD…..
2 Samuel 2:1 – David inquired of the LORD….
2 Samuel 5:19 – And David inquired of the LORD…..
2 Samuel 5:23 – And when David inquired of the LORD…..
2 Samuel 21:1 – David inquired of the LORD…..
I Chronicles 14:10 – And David inquired of God….
Every time when he had a big decision to make, a big heartache he needed comfort from or a struggle or persecution he was going through David “enquired of the Lord” and received the direction and answer to prayer he needed. But this time he did not “enquire of the Lord” instead he “consulted with the captains” and the end result was not good. The end result of this bad decision was failure, heartache, death, and discouragement. When we go off without praying to the Lord about something first we risk ruin. The Lord won’t fail you when you pray and “enquire of the Lord” for direction in your life. He will answer you in His timing. (Philippians 4:6 – Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.)

Whose eye’s was it right in? – That action you are taking or that decision you are making, is it right in the Lord’s eyes or is it right just in your eyes? (I Chronicles 13:4 – And all the congregation said that they would do so: for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people.) We need to take our time and make sure decisions are right in the eyes of the Lord. We need to be concerned with doing things right for the Lord, and doing things right by the Lord in our life. Do not trust your own wisdom in making decisions. (Proverbs 3:5,6 – Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.) Turn to the Lord our Heavenly Father for instruction and guidance. Turn your problems over to Him. He will never leave you alone in your cares. (Hebrews 13:5c – for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.) – The Lord will always be there for you. You are never really alone if you are a Christian. Make sure you are confident that it is right in the Lord’s eyes before you make that decision. (Proverbs 3:26 – For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.)
A right thing. (I Chronicles 13:6 – And David went up, and all Israel, to Baalah, that is, to Kirjathjearim, which belonged to Judah, to bring up thence the ark of God the LORD, that dwelleth between the cherubims, whose name is called on it.) What David was attempting to do was a good thing to do. If he would have just done it God’s way. So many things we do can be considered a good thing to do, but only if it does not contradict God’s word on the matter.
A right thing in a wrong way. (I Chronicles 13:7 – And they carried the ark of God in a new cart out of the house of Abinadab: and Uzza and Ahio drave the cart.) God had given explicit directions on how to transport the ark. Other parts of the tabernacle could be carried on carts but not the ark. (Numbers 4:15 – And when Aaron and his sons have made an end of covering the sanctuary, and all the vessels of the sanctuary, as the camp is to set forward; after that, the sons of Kohath shall come to bear it: but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die. These things are the burden of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation.) The ark was never to be carried on a cart but born on the shoulders of the sons of Kohath. Why? Because the ark speaks of Christ and the Gospel is to be carried by us (Christians) to the rest of the world. (Mark 13:10 – And the gospel must first be published among all nations.) Giving out the gospel is the individual responsibility of every Christian. (Acts 1:8 – But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.)

There should be no shortcuts taken in giving out the Gospel of Christ to a needy world. If we are doing something for Christ it should be done in a top notch, giving it our all way. Taking God’s word out to the world is not an easy thing to do. It requires hard work, dedication to doing it God’s way and not our way. (Romans 12:1,2 – I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.) Each Christian needs to do his part and not leave his part up to someone else to do in addition to their own part. The Apostle Paul says “For every man shall bear his own burden.” Galatians 6:5. “All of us have to put our shoulders to the wheel to get the Word of God out to a world that desperately needs it. God doesn’t write the gospel in the sky; it has to be passed along by His children.” – J. Vernon McGee.
So The End Result of Doing things our own way and not God’s way leads to failure, displeasure and maybe even death. (I Chronicles 13:9-10 – And when they came unto the threshingfloor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God.) Good intentions do not justify bad actions. The end does not justify the means.
Why was Uzza killed? – Because they were transporting the ark their way instead of doing it God’s way. (Numbers 4:15 – …. but they shall not touch any holy thing, lest they die. These things are the burden of the sons of Kohath in the tabernacle of the congregation.) Uzza interfered with what was happening. He directly disobeyed God’s word. Don’t interfere and cause a hindrance to the Lord’s work.

Numbers 20:12 – “And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.”
• Moses directly disobeyed God and because of that the Lord would not let him into the promised land.
• Don’t cause your friend to get distracted while God’s word is being taught. Don’t be the reason they don’t here the lesson they need.
• Don’t be the reason your friend spends eternity in hell. Don’t put your way over God’s spirit moving in their soul. Let the death of Uzza teach you something about being irreverent (disrespectful) to the things of God.
• God is a Holy God.
• God’s word is Holy.
• God’s house is Holy.
• Everything about God is Holy and it is all to be treated with the utmost respect and reverence. (I Peter 1:15-16 -But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.)
• When Gods word is being taught we need to be respectful and honor His word and the teaching of it. (Psalm 99:9 – Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.)
• When God’s people are requesting prayer we need to be silent and listen to those requests and pray for each other. (Jude 20 – But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost,)
• When Gods word is being read we need to silently and intently listen to His Holy Word. (Romans 7:12 – Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.)
Doing things our way brings us displeasure. (I Chronicles 13:11 – And David was displeased, because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzza: wherefore that place is called Perezuzza to this day.) When we fail doing something our way we often blame God. (I Chronicles 13:12 – And David was afraid of God that day, saying, How shall I bring the ark of God home to me?) David asks “How am I going to do this for God” – Well if he had just done it God’s way in the first place all of this heartache, displeasure, fear, and discouragement would not have happened.
We need to make sure when we are making a decision in life or taking an action that we are doing it right in God’s eyes. We need to make sure whatever we do that we are doing it God’s way. If we do something our way it will just lead to failure, disappointment, regret, and maybe even death. But God’s way leads to joy, victory and life eternal with Him! (I Corinthians 15:57 – But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.) Whose eyes are your actions right in? Whose eyes are your words right in? Whose eyes are your friends right in? Whose eyes are your plans right in? If they are right in just  your eyes you are heading for trouble, sorrow and maybe even death; but if they are right in God’s eyes you are heading for a fulfilled joy filled life living in the heart of God’s will.