What Will We Do, If the Constitution is Destroyed?

Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed. Psalms 119:136, NIV

Streams of tears flow from my eyes because my people are destroyed. Lamentations 3:48

My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. Hosea 4:6(a), NIV


I truly believe that most Americans feel that something is wrong. For some it is just because of the challenges we are going through that have taken such a heavy toll. I'm not talking about that.


Instead, I am talking about the destruction of our Constitution. Our rights have been steadily chipped away, and with this shrinking of our rights, our freedom is rapidly being destroyed. While most people certainly are aware of these occurrences, they haven't a clue as to why it is happening or what they can do about it. They don't understand that what is happening, is a result of an entire generation being removed from the principles that their nation was founded on.


Those who have studied history, however, know. And that knowledge makes them sad and angry and frustrated - all at the same time. They ask themselves how an entire nation would willingly sell itself into slavery? The answer, of course, is that their ignorance of who they are and where they came from has destroyed them. And we are bearing witness to a nation that is on life support because its people no longer know enough about duty and honor to even care that they are losing their rights and their freedom.


Maybe now we know in a small measure what God is feeling when He views the sad state that His creation is in because we have ignored His laws. We are a people that in large part are being destroyed by our lack of knowledge. It should be noted that this type of destruction did not happen over night. Like America and her abandonment of the Constitution, the people of God have slowly drifted away from the very truth that could save them... and we need to wake up before it is too late to do anything about it!


Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For since the message declared by angels proved to be reliable, and every transgression or disobedience received a just retribution, how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard,  Hebrews 2:1-3, ESV


The readings for the next two weeks are from Hebrews. A chapter a day of reading and thinking about the truths they contain will help us to understand Who is in charge and what we need to be doing to serve Him best. These readings will also go a long way in curing this terrible disease of ignorance of God's Word that has been lending to the destruction of His people.


Stop Attacking One Another

For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.

Galatians 5:14-15, ESV


There is a lot going on right now in our world. A disease continues to wreak havoc, coming and going in varying degrees for well over a year now, and people's nerves and reactions are beginning to fray a bit. As a result, many are taking sides, planting themselves in one opinion camp or the other and looking with suspicion and anger at anyone who believes differently. The flames of this division is being very skillfully fanned by politicians, the media, and even those in the business world. This should not surprise us because those who are hungry for power often seek to divide the people they would control in order to distract them from their true motives.


In speaking of this problem, Dr. Chris Martenson referred to an experiment that was conducted a number of years ago that involved rats, a metal cage, and electricity. Those who conducted the experiment placed a single rat in a metal cage and proceeded to shock the rat. At first, the rat would go crazy at each shock, but eventually got used to it. Then a second rat was placed in the same cage and the shocks began again.


Not surprisingly, the rats began to respond to the shocks by violently attacking one another, even to the point of killing the other rat if they could. Even though the other rat had nothing to do with the shocks being implemented, they attacked the only thing available, that only thing being the other rat. Stupid rats...


Do you see the point? Families, communities and sometimes even churches are being split apart now by a stupid disease and by smart people who are taking advantage of it. As a result, we have ceased to love our neighbors and are starting to bite and devour one another, even though they are not responsible for the shocks that are occurring. They simply have a different opinion as to how to address those shocks. Sadly though, the ones in the same cage as us (our neighbors) are receiving the brunt of our displeasure - even though they are not the ones who are responsible for the shocks.


I think we can all agree that it is a mess, but what can we do? Well, for a start, we can love our neighbor as ourselves. Then, maybe, we will stop consuming one another and can get on with the important task of serving our Lord and our Savior.


This week's readings come from II Timothy, Titus, and Philemon. Among many other important lessons, they teach us how God wants us to treat one another.

I Timothy 1-6: The Danger of False Teachers

As I urged you when I went into Macedonia—remain in Ephesus

that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine, nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies,

which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith.

Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,

from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk,

I Timothy 1:3-6, NKJV


One of the most consistent problems that has plagued Christianity since its inception has been the prevalence of false teachers. False teachers arise from a number of motives and for a number of reasons. Some come about because they want to serve Christ, but in slightly different ways than have been commanded, because they want to do their own thing. Others seek power, so they twist the Scriptures in such a way as to make that happen.


Some don't really have bad motives, they are just ignorant of what the commands are because they do not have a depth of study. They latch on to their favorite verse or philosophy and simply do not add to their knowledge. Others still want everyone to be saved (just as God does), but they want to tweak the commands so that they are easier for everyone.


Whatever the reason or motive, whatever the intention or lack of purpose, the result of these false teachers is always the same: They are teaching a different doctrine than commanded, and this has the effect of placing their souls in danger. On the other hand, the purpose of God's commands to hold to the truth is "love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith."  


And God does not want us to stray from these virtues because doing so will cause us to stray from His path of salvation. You may have noticed in your readings so far that just about every book and letter of the New Testament contains warnings against false teachers. If God thought this to be such an important warning as to inspire the New Testament writers to bring it up so often, then it would be wise for us to heed that warning. And the best way to avoid the false doctrine of these false teachers is to be aware of what the truth is. This can only be discovered through the Word of God.


This is why we are reading it!


The readings for the next few days is from I Timothy 1-6. The teachings contained within this short letter will help guard us from the pitfalls of following false teachers and their dangerous doctrines. 

II Thessalonians 1-3: Ignorance is Bliss... or is it?

God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.

He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus

They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might on the day he comes to be glorified in his holy people and to be marveled at among all those who have believed. This includes you, because you believed our testimony to you.

With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith.

I Thes. 1:6-11, NIV


One of the easiest things to do in our modern religious world is to not get too carried away with our Bible study. After all, we are busy people and ignorance, as the saying goes, is bliss... isn't it?


Of course the answer to that question is that there are hardly any areas of life that are made better through ignorance. I don't know anyone who would want a heart surgeon who had such a philosophy, nor can I conceive of anyone wanting their children's teachers to adopt such a belief. Just try to go before a traffic judge with the defense that you were ignorant of the law and see how far that will get you.


Why then should we think that God would accept such an excuse of ignorance? The One who gave His only begotten Son that we might live as well as the Christ who gave that life, are worthy of our efforts to find out all that we possibly can about the gospel of our Lord. In fact, according to the passage above, God will inflict the ultimate penalty upon those who do not believe or obey. That is why, as Paul writes to the church in the passage stated above, that He was praying that they would live lives that were worthy of their calling. God does not want us to be lost and knows that ignorance of His Word will place us in peril. The cure for such ignorance is knowledge, and that knowledge can only be found within the pages of His holy Word.


We have been given the same charge today. How will we respond to this responsibility?


The reading for the next few days is from II Thessalonians. It is filled with both promises of reward and of punishment, as well as the call to make the right choice.

I Thessalonians 1-5: Give Thanks

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing,

give thanks in all circumstances;

for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you

I Thessalonians 5:16-18, ESV


You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly.

The streams of God are filled with water

to provide the people with grain, for so you have ordained it.

Psalms 65:9, NIV


Last year Happy, Texas experienced it's third lowest rainfall since records began in 1880. We received a little over 10 inches of rain, and this came after the two previous years had lower than normal rainfall. The first five months of this year were not much better. As the farmers and ranchers could tell you, we were in trouble.


In the past week, Happy has received more rain than we had for the entire prior year. The Happy draw is filled with water, just like David said of all of God's streams in the passage above. And while we are a bit water logged now, the land is healed and there is hope for this region.


And we are thankful!


But the rain of the past week is not meant to be the focal point of this article. Rather, the focus is upon the last 3 1/2 years of drought. Were we thankful then? The reason I ask is that we had much to be thankful for during the previous years because God blessed us richly during that time and He carried us through!


Through sickness and turmoil and drought, God rescued us!


And just as we are to be joyful and prayerful and thankful for the showers of blessing we have received this past week, we were to be just as joyful and prayerful and thankful for the blessings that God gave us during the times of trial. Maybe more so, when you think about it, for it is the hard times that truly display the power of God and which prove our faithfulness. Anyone can be grateful when times are easy and they are getting just what they want, but it is times of testing that builds servants who are indeed worthy to serve.


The fact is that we need God as much during hard times - sometimes more so - and He has never let us down.


And we are thankful!


The reading for the next few days is from Paul's 1st letter to the church at Thessalonica. It teaches us how to be thankful in all situations.