“So take diligent heed to yourselves to love the Lord your God.” (Joshua 23:11)
We must be cautious when it comes to the words that we speak … when it comes to the thoughts we allow to rest in our hearts and lives … when it comes to the way and the manner in which we conduct our daily lives.
Yes … cautious is a good word for any day … but especially as we begin a new year. The world we live in is a dangerous place on so many levels. God is being ignored and even denied as existing … God’s Book is being rejected as fully inspired and in many ways attempts are being made by some Bible Companies to dumb down the actual meaning of the original text!
Cautious must be the ‘watchword’ for those of us who have been blessed with a marriage … blessed with children … grandchildren … and even great-grandchildren. Cautious because our “accuser” is always plotting and scheming to counter our efforts to serve the God of heaven and to lead our families to acquire and maintain their own faith!
Cautious describes how we engage in our Bible Study and our prayer life … how we engage in our worship services … to ensure God’s Book is always held forth as “the lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.”
Cautious as change occurs in every aspect of our lives to be confident we are “walking in the light of God’s Word” … a Book whose truths are not subject to update, revision to what we want it to say rather than acceptance, and obedience to its eternal message!
The church … the “body of Christ” is not exempt from the need to be cautious. What our children and young people are being taught in their Bible Classes and by whom they are being taught! Cautious about what is being taught in our adult Bible classes as well. The opinions of men … even our own opinions cannot and must not be elevated to a plain of being equal to God’s will. Those of old who were leaders of the Jews when Jesus came down to earth in the form of man were guilty of just what we’ve mentioned. The relevance of man’s wisdom or thoughts can be a dangerous proposition for the difference of the thoughts and words of men can be off of the mark whether intentional or unintentional … but not God’s inspired words (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
“There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death.” (Proverbs 14:12)
Can we see and will we be honest with ourselves and others, but most especially with God that we have been guilty and admit that we weren’t trying to offend God in those efforts “that seemed right” … we were just trying to in some way improve how we worship and live for Him daily? History tells us that when we start trying to make our worship more relevant with outward improvements rather than changing our hearts … we are inviting trouble.
Being cautious has relevance when it comes to the songs we sing in worship … to the books penned by men for spiritual considerations. Caution is necessary when we realize how false teaching, and error, find their way into both our individual and corporate worship. Satan has always found a venue through man’s worship that almost always is opened just enough to give him a foothold and let the seeds of his influence take root, germinate, and grow till they have choked out what is genuine … what is real truth.
When we take the time to think about the Parable of the Sower also known as the Parable of the Soils recorded in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke (Matthew 13:1-23; Mark 4:1-20; Luke 8:4-15) … being cautious and receptive to the only real truth … “the seed is the word” … will always lead us to Him who declared “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)
The summation of these thoughts is to be found in the fact that when this life has ended … whether for us individually or on the Second Coming of Christ … it will be to His Word that each of us will be held accountable!
“He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him — the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.” (John 12:48)
Bill Fairchild, Jr.