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by Bill Denton
Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. (Matthew 7:24,26 NAS)
OK, lets have a pop test. Are you wise or foolish?
No hesitating now. The answer is probably obvious. Oh, did I remind you to be sure to use Jesus evaluation system? All you have to do is admit that you act on what you learn from Jesus or that you dont.
Perhaps the truth is that we know about some of Jesus teachings that we do use. Weve managed to learn them, trust them, and use them. We probably want very much to point to those things and say, See, Im a wise man (or woman). Unfortunately, we might also know of some other teachings that weve written off, dismissed as irrelevant, or rejected. We certainly cant say that weve willingly and eagerly put those things to work in our lives. Still, its not easy to use the words, foolish man (or woman), about ourselves.
Lorne Sandy goes on to mention something that is often unsaid about obeying Gods word: obedience requires courage. Take Joshua, for example. When Moses died and the mantle of leadership passed to Joshua, God told him one thing that would best equip him as a leader of Gods people. Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. (Joshua 1:7, NAS) One might focus on the admonition of God to obey what he said, but there is a very obvious quality that seems to enable that obedience courage.
Real disciples are followers of Gods word not just in the sense of having gone to some Bible class or heard a really motivating speaker expound the scriptures. Real disciples are people who have the courage to go out and use what they learn. Theyre wise people because theyve acted on what they have heard. They dont just know the right answers,they live them. Quite a difference. Its called, obedience!
So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the message God has planted in your hearts, for it is strong enough to save your souls. And remember, it is a message to obey, not just to listen to. If you dont obey, you are only fooling yourself. (James 1:21-22 NLT)
Author: Bill Denton
Publication Date: January 30, 2002
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