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How Does The Christian Do It?

How Does The Christian Do It?


Life is a gift,
      a challenge,
      a battlefield,
      a journey,
      a race,
      a game.

Matthew 5:38-48 (Jesus speaking)

38Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: 39But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also. 41And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. 42Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away. 43Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 44But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
45That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. 46For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? 47And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? 48Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

Romans 12:14-21 (from Paul’s letter)

14Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. 15Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. 16Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. 17Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. 18If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. 19Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. 20Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. 21Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

1 Corinthians 9:24, 25

24Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. 25And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

We just read the Word and saw the example Paul gave in order to live as a peacemaker. There is no higher calling than this, to obey God’s Word and to follow Christ’s example, living as a peacemaker. The life of a peacemaker becomes a light to a lost world bent on destruction and wrongdoing.

In a time when people rush to gain, at the expense of others, the Christian must stand as a godly peacemaker. Just how this can be done in various circumstances is the topic of this lesson.

Matthew 5:38-39 (Jesus speaking)

38Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: 39But I say unto you…

This verse is from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, Matthew chapters 5-7. In the sermon Christ had already laid the foundation of His message by declaring the Beatitudes in chapter 5:1-12 and He stated that believers are “the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world,” verses 13-14.

Matthew 5:1-16 (Jesus speaking – starting in Verse 3)

1And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: 2And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying, 3Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted. 5Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. 6Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. 7Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. 8Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. 9Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. 10Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. 13Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt has lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

One of the areas of conduct that Jesus covered is injustice. He dealt with how we relate to others, especially those who have wronged us in some way.

There is a popular sentiment today that says, “I won’t get mad; I’ll just get even!” If all of us adopted the “eye for an eye” and “a tooth for a tooth,” the world would eventually become blind and toothless. Jesus never lived by that approach and neither should we. Vengence belongs to the Lord.

Romans 12:19

Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

Galatians 5:25, 26

25If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

God has provided the armour for us to wear, during these times in our lives, when we’re being attacked by these things: the flesh, the devil and the world.

Ephesians 6:12

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

The third enemy is the world.

James 4:4

Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

We see evil everywhere. It is in our newspapers, on our TV screen and we hear it on the radio, constantly. The “world” infiltrates us and our homes. Pressure is put on us to conform to the world.

Games have a goal. There are goals in the Christian life. The apostle Paul said in

2 Timothy 4:7-8

7I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: 8Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

We too have a goal.

In a game, a score is kept. Scorekeepers are essential in every game. The Bible tells us that God is keeping score.
Life is a serious business, and the Bible says that everyone of us shall give an account of himself to God. How do we stand before God? What is our score? How do we measure up?

One day, God the Father will tell Jesus, His Son, “Go get Your Bride.” The “Bride” is the Church, the Body of Christ, the redeemed believers. There will be no more time to make amends or to get ready. It will then be too late. We’ll go to be with Jesus, if our hearts are right before God, if we’re ready spiritually to meet God. If not, those who aren’t ready will have to stay here and go through The Tribulation that is coming upon the whole earth.

We must be ready, ready to meet the Lord!

James 1:19-27

19Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: 20For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. 21Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. 22But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. 23For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. 25But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. 26If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain. 27Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

To play any game well you must learn the rules. For the Christian, there are rules too:

The Ten Commandments,
The Sermon on the Mount
and
all the commands that are given to us in Scripture.

God’s rule book is the Bible. God has an orderly and law abiding universe, and He requires His followers to be orderly and law abiding people, disciples of Jesus Christ. A disciple of Jesus Christ is one who goes by the Rule Book: The Bible.

The Lord is particular about saving souls. If God is not haphazard in nature, He certainly is not slipshod in the matter of our souls and our spiritual relationship with Him.

John 3:16 (Jesus speaking)

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Games have rules. Can you imagine a game without rules? What if everyone could make up his own rules. There would be as many rules as there are players. For every game there are rules. Are we abiding by God’s guidance in His Word, by God’s “rules”?

1 Peter 1:15

But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

Jesus was concerned about individuals. He preached to great crowds, but His message was always to the individual, and He took time to help people personally. His purpose was to transform them and then send them out to share His message of forgiveness with others.

God’s Word is something like preparing for a trip. You like to know where you’re going and what you can expect to see.

Spiritual maturity is one of the greatest needs in churches today. God is looking for mature men and women to carry on His work.

The real examination in Bible Study comes in the “school” of life, not in the classroom. Faith is a key doctrine in the Christian life. The sinner is saved by faith and the believer must walk by faith.

2 Corinthians 5:7

For we walk by faith, not by sight.

Being a Christian involves trusting Christ and living for Christ. You receive The Life; then you reveal The Life.

Yes, life is
      a gift…
      a challenge…
      a battlefield…
      a journey…
      a race…
      a game.

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