January 31, 2023 – Reflections on “Choose Life!”

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide, and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow, and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” Matthew 7:13-14.

         Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord, you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24.

         Choosing Life is choosing to obey, glorify, and following The God who created us. Choosing Life is returning God’s choice. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. Ephesians 1:3-4.

         When we see a mountain rising to the heaven, or feel the powerful tug of the ocean waves, we realize that the God chose us, before His strength and might create the sea or the mountains and the valleys. He created us with the ability to choose. Although when God gave Adam and Eve and told them to eat anything in the Garden of Eden, except from the one tree. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:16-17.

         Satan was ready with his temptation. Surely, you will not die! And they ate, and this became the first disobedience of the law of God. And they were removed from the garden of Eden.

          Adam and Even delighted in the appearance of the fruit of the tree of good and evil and succumbed to the temptation to eat. How often do we see things that delight us, and we desire them? Apostle Paul wrote, Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2.

         Jesus is the way, and the life and the way to God the Father and eternal life. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, and forever. Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them. Hebrews 13:8-9.

           What is the most visible? A new car, the latest in fashion, and delicious food, and yet, we cannot see faith. And faith is to be desired. Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it, the people of old received their commendation. By faith, we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. Hebrews 11:1-3.

         Will we obey this command? And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20.

          What can faith in God provide for us? By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this, he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. Hebrews 11:7.

           The flood covered the earth, and it rained 40 days and nights. What would have happened if Noah substituted God’s instructions for constructing the Ark? Noah listened, and he followed the instructions and believed. He was 600 years old as he built the ark. After the flood subsided, what was God’s command to Noah? And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything.“ Genesis 9:1-3.

         “Be fruitful and multiply!” and naming the work of the Holy Spirit–the Fruit of the Holy Spirit confused me until I realized that being fruitful is often not seen. But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Galatians 5:22-24. Each of the fruit builds on to the next one and becomes one. No one can have the next one unless they first have Love.

       “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.“  Matthew 22:37-39.

        God teaches us to use all our heart and soul and mind to be His. And then we are ready for the greatest adventure provided by God. “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” Mark 16:15-16.

         Believe, Trust, Love, Proclaim, and Glorify our Lord God. Reflect Jesus in all we say and do to glorify our Lord Jesus through whom we have salvation.

         When obey Him to seek after Him, we become like Him. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33.

          So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. I Corinthians 10:31.