Periodically, I have run across Scriptures that on the surface seemingly contradict another. Over time, I have come to learn that God never contradicts Himself. As a result, I now know I need God to give me understanding
One example are the Scriptures:
2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. 3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
1 Corinthians 13:
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
When I was a new Christian, I was befuddled by this. How was I to be like a child, yet put away childish things? Eventually, God shone His light on them and gave me the understanding that my heart was to remain like a child’s in the way they trust their parent and never doubt they are loved; yet, I was to behave with maturity as an adult.
Today, I read:
11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret.
It caught my attention because my 1st reaction to it was viewing vs.12 as a contradiction to vs. 11. How do I expose things yet not speak of them? Since I now know God does not contradict Himself, I knew the lack of understanding laid with me. So, I sought the Lord for clarification.
We are most definitely told to expose things that are not Truth and that are contrary to God’s Word. God wants us to do this and we are to do it with Gods’ Word: 2 Timothy 3:16
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”
In doing so,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—
So, we are to expose. reprove, correct, instruct, etc. in God’s Love. Once again, it becomes a matter of the heart. I fully acknowledge that I don’t often do this. At times, I am more motivated by anger than Love. That’s my own weakness, not God’s fault. I have a lot of cut and jagged edges being a broken vessel. I have learned that I need to 1st seek God and make sure my heart is in the right place before Him, before obeying Him in doing such things. Even when doing that, I still get in His way. But God promises: Ps. 138:8a ‘The Lord will perfect that which concerns me’.
So, back to today’s verses that instruct me to ‘expose’, yet not to speak of such things.
Once again, it is a matter of the heart. When exposing and shining a light on things, we are not to turn it into an occasion to gossip. We do what we need to do in order to shine a light on what we know is contrary to God’s Word, yet once we feel that we have done all we can, then we leave it in God’s hands and at the foot of the Cross.
I take this passage seriously:
The Watchman’s Duty
1 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 2 “Son of man, speak to the sons of your people and say to them, ‘If I bring a sword upon a land, and the people of the land take one man from among them and make him their watchman, 3 and he sees the sword coming upon the land and blows on the trumpet and warns the people, 4 then he who hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, and a sword comes and takes him away, his blood will be on his own head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet but did not take warning; his blood will be on himself. But had he taken warning, he would have delivered his life. 6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet and the people are not warned, and a sword comes and takes a person from them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require from the watchman’s hand.’
7 “Now as for you, son of man, I have appointed you a watchman for the house of Israel; so you will hear a message from My mouth and give them warning from Me. 8 When I say to the wicked, ‘O wicked man, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require from your hand. 9 But if you on your part warn a wicked man to turn from his way and he does not turn from his way, he will die in his iniquity, but you have delivered your life.
10 “Now as for you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus you have spoken, saying, “Surely our transgressions and our sins are upon us, and we are rotting away in them; how then can we survive?”’ 11 Say to them, ‘As I live!’ declares the Lord God, ‘I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! Why then will you die, O house of Israel?’
I have been called a: ‘watchdog’ in the past more than once.LOL!
I use to hate this job. I would get angry with God for placing me in such a position. A watchdog makes folks uncomfortable, angers some, frightens others. I will never win any popularity contests in such a position. Folks prefer a cuddly puppy to one that is barking it’s head off every time it perceives potential danger or smells a rat.
I’ve had to learn not to care what others think when I feel I must expose something or rebuke someone, and instead focus only on pleasing my Lord and being obedient…allowing the chips to fall where they may. I may get yelled at, sent out into the cold, and even kicked (out of support groups) 🙂. But even if I have to spend a day or two (or longer) in tears whimpering, I prefer those consequences over the displeasure of my Lord by not obeying Him. His approval is much more important to me than the approval of folks that don’t understand. Those I’ve met along the way that know my intent is not to harm, bring tears to my eyes for loving this part of the Body that is not so appealing as others may be.
I have a neighbor that has 2 dogs. Most of the neighbors hate them. They bark. Not at every little thing, but when they see a stranger or a coyote or anything that doesn’t ‘fit in’, they bark. I love these dogs. I know that when they bark they are sounding an alarm and trying to warn me and my neighbor that something’s not ‘right’. There are times when I am annoyed by them. But the protection they provide us far outweighs those annoying times.
So, I will continue to expose and sound the alarm by blowing that trumpet even if I get yelled at and scorned, as a result. I don’t want someone else’s blood to be on my hands.
(((HUGS))) Jude Gibbs
Excerpt from: Gifts from the Ashes…
Also, a Contributor on ‘The Mighty’: https://themighty.com/2017/03/the-pain-of-holidays-after-the-loss-of-loved-ones/
Please spread the word…TY!!! (((HUGS)))