Perhaps it may turn out a sang,
Perhaps turn out a sermon.

-- R. Burns Epistle to a Young Friend

Friday, June 20, 2014

Renouncing Nothings

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people,  training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age … – Titus 2:11-12

What really matters?  Is it my job?  Sometimes I live like it is, but in two years or five years or, at most, seven years, if I live that long, I will retire.  Maybe it’s my investments which are supposed to help sustain me after I retire and, perhaps, even leave a bit of a legacy for the grandchildren.  I would like to do that, but there may come a time when the markets all crash and fiat currency loses its value.  The Bible reminds us that even gold and silver may become worthless when there is nothing available to be bought. 

Some people seem to live on the level where satisfying physical urges and seeking physical pleasures are their only concerns.  Some live on a slightly higher plane where they seek mental gratifications and have what Watchman Nee would call “soulish” fulfillment.  They revel in their superiority of learning, taste, and experience.  Apart from God, a person may convince himself that the visible and temporal is all that there is and make a determination to get all of it he can. 

God’s grace offers salvation for all, falling like rain over all the earth yet not all receive.  Lives that are too full of self and self-satisfaction have no room for grace.  Jesus said, Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Not the poor but the poor in spirit are blessed.  They make room for grace in the clay cup of their existence by pouring out some of their ambitions, passions, and desires that they might be filled instead with love, peace and joy.

Christians in an un-Christian world, someone, probably Lewis, used the image of agents behind enemy lines.  We are not, however, covert spies.  We are in uniform, and we are going to draw fire.  Our battle is not with the ungodly and the deceived but for them.  We were once all held captive.  Christ has set us all free, though some do not know it.  Those who do ought to fight the deception to enlighten those still in darkness.   We can’t fight a deception we embrace, or one that we envy and exalt.  We must reject the delusions, renew our minds and live for the truth.


mushroom said...

Too much action today, so I am running a little late. I suppose that makes this the Weekend Edition.

More likely the Weakened Addition.

Hope yours is a good one.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Hi Mushroom,
I hope things slow down for ya soon so you can get some more slack.
I got a lotof things to do next week and I'm kinda dreading it.
To borrow a Marine phrase, Semper Fi!

And semper Gratus!

Self controlled, upright and Godly certainly mesh well together.
And essential they are! They must work together to create a blood-washed synergy.

mushroom said...

Hey, thanks, Ben. I'll be praying for you to have a productive and positive week in dealing with everything.