Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Beatitude Series #14: Woe! Woe! Woe!

I've got plans for my life. Leave me alone, God!

We've looked at the blessed life of the Christian as Jesus described it in His Beatitudes in Matthew 5-7 and again in Luke 6. The warnings of Jesus in Luke 6:24-26 are addressed to those who are not serious about living the Christian life. The only concern of many Christians is that they have trusted Christ and now have assurance of Heaven when they die. That's all they want from God. As far as learning how to live the Christian life and please God, they have no interest or concern, nor do they care about God's blessings. They've got plans for their lives and they want to be left alone to pursue their goals and dreams. They have no time for God or the Bible. "Perhaps when I am older," they think, "I will get serious about God and try to please Him before I die."

To such a person I would cry, "WHOA, WHOA, WHOA!!!"

As one riding a horse and trying to stop it, I would cry to you who are running from God as fast as you can, "Whoa, Whoa, Whoa!!! Before you start down the road of rebellion and independence from God, I want to warn you of what lies ahead. Life is filled with the devil's landmines. Unless you are walking in fellowship with God, seeking to obey His Word; you could be maimed for life or be blown up and destroyed by Satan. Everyone who continues down the road of rebellion and independence from God can expect a life of misery, grief, sorrow and a broken heart. Read Proverbs 1-2 and take very seriously the warnings in those chapters. Before you start down the road of sexual promiscuity, read and heed the warnings of Proverbs 5-7. Hebrews 13:4 teaches, "Marriage is honorable in every respect, and the bed is undefiled; but whoremongers and adulterers, God will judge." Proverbs 13:4 warns "The way of the transgressor is HARD!"

If you reject the Lordship of Christ, you will never know true freedom.

If you are not a bond slave of Jesus Christ, you are a slave of the devil. You may think you are free and run your own life, but soon you will discover you are bound by Satan. You will find that though the pleasures of sin seem sweet, at the end you will find there's a terrible after-taste. If you want to play dangerously, play with the high tension wires or play Russian roulette. You just might get away without getting hurt, but don't play with sin. There is no way you can escape tragedy! You can't play the game of sin and win. You'll lose every time.

Note some of the things of which Jesus warns and pronounces woes in Luke 6:24-26

RICHES Jesus is not against a person working hard and investing wisely and accumulating wealth. In fact, Deuteronomy 8:18 reminds us that it is God who give us the ability to gain wealth. What Jesus is warning of in this passage is the arrogant attitude of many rich who believe they are "self-made" men or women. People who trust their riches and have no room for God in their lives are facing God's judgment. Psalm 10 describes these people. In Luke 12:15-21 and again in Luke 16:19-31 you have the stories of two wealthy men who suddenly faced God's judgment. James 5 warns the rich who made their money by taking advantage of their employees or slaves. Read the sober warnings in these passages of Scripture.

FULLNESS Jesus continues His warning in Luke 6:25 to those who are full. Again, Jesus is not preaching against eating a good dinner and going away from the table full and satisfied. Although the Bible warns about the sin of gluttony, it is not sinful to eat a good meal and feel satisfied. What He is warning about here is the sin of being full of ourselves, living self-satisfied lives with no sense of our need for God. He is warning that those who live with no sense of mourning over sin, but who just laugh off God's warnings, will one day weep and mourn, but then it will be too late for salvation. Read what lies ahead in Rev. 6:12-17.

PRIDE In contrast to God's blessing on the meek, God's Word warns of woes on the proud. Pride is one of the worst of sins. It led to Lucifer's fall in Heaven. God calls it an abomination in Proverbs 6:16-19 where He warns about a proud look. Psalm 138:6 "Though the Lord be high, yet hath He respect unto the lowly: but the proud He knoweth afar off." I Timothy 6:3-5 tells us that pride is a mark of false teachers. Pride is a growing sin of the last days. II Timothy 3:1-7.

Seeking the favor of man rather than the favor of God.

In Luke 6:26 Jesus warns "Woe unto you when all men shall speak well of you for so did their fathers to the false prophets."In other words, woe on those who seek the favor of man rather than the favor of God; whereas those who are persecuted for righteousness sake are blessed. Preacher, take comfort if you find yourself in a battle. Not one because of your own foolishness, but because you faithfully preach God's Word. It's not a pleasant feeling to be hated and opposed by people, but Jesus' words have always been a comfort to me.

Moses is an example of one who chose God's favor over man's favor. When he was old enough to make his own decision, he chose to identify himself with God's people, Israel. In making that decision he gave up the glories of being a son of Pharaoh, choosing rather to suffer with God's people. Read of his choice in Hebrews 11:24-27

 

The Apostle Paul was one who experienced the hatred of men wherever He went. In the closing hours of his life he wrote poignant words to Timothy, his son in the faith from a cold, lonely, damp Roman prison cell as he awaited the day of his execution. I encourage you to read those words in II Timothy 4. I can seldom read them without tears.

 

Look at the life of Jesus. When you read the four Gospels, you can't miss the fact that everywhere Jesus went He had enemies, as well as a little circle of friends who loved Him. God's faithful servants can expect no better treatment.

On which road are you traveling? If you choose to walk with God, you can count on the disfavor of Satan and his world system; but you can also count on God's blessing on your life. If you choose the favor and popularity of the world system, you are walking the road that leads to woe. This is not my opinion. This is the message of Jesus in His Sermon on the Mount.

March 1, 2006 - Posted by | Beatitudes Series

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