New Year's Resolutions
I wonder how many have ever made a New Year’s Resolution? I know that I have. Have I always kept them? No! They were expressions of my good intentions to do what is right and get rid of bad habits and attitudes, etc.
Most likely, none of us considered this wrong or an attempt at good works; or having anything to do with our salvation or deliverance now or eternally.
I have been meditating on what the bible has to say about weddings, grooms, brides and the wedding guests for quite a few months; in preparation to speak at a wedding. I have been amazed at the influence that the kingdoms of this world and their philosophies have had on the concepts of getting married over the centuries.
Currently it is, in certain ways, totally opposite of God’s instructions, as taught in the Scriptures to His children, a peculiar people.
In God’s instructed way, the wedding is all about the Groom and the Father of the groom selecting a pure bride; a bride who was prepared to go and waited for the groom to come, no matter how long, take her to a new home and the wedding feast.
The feast was prepared by the father of the groom.
The marriage was consummated during and as part of the wedding festivities, in a private tent or chamber.
Psalms 19 uses a comparison of the groom coming forth out of the wedding chamber with the idea of the sun rising, or coming out of its tent, in the morning. “He has made a tent for the sun, which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber; It rejoices as a strong man to run his course.”
Today, in the US, the wedding is planned by the Bride. She ch9oses the location of the wedding and says what is going to happen and her father foots the bill.
Many times this sets the stage for the marriage, with the wife being a major director in the running of the home and family. Feminism, Humanism and Psychology, the philosophies of this world and its ruler, have a death, strangle hold on the church as well as the world. “Do not be conformed to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God — what is good and well-pleasing and perfect. [Rom. 12:2]”
Ok, that is how I got to Psalms 19, which starts out by stating, in the Amplified Bible…
“The heavens are telling of the glory (the weight [Strong’s Dictionary]) of God; And the expanse [of heaven] is declaring the work of His hands. [Rom. 1:20-21]”
Romans 1:20-21 “For ever since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through His workmanship [all His creation, the wonderful things that He has made], so that they [who fail to believe and trust in Him] are without excuse and without defense. [Psa. 19:1-4; Eph. 2:10] For even though they knew God [as the Creator], they did not honor Him as God or give thanks [for His wondrous creation]. On the contrary, they became worthless in their thinking [godless, with pointless reasonings, and silly speculations], and their foolish heart was darkened.”
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art], created in Christ Jesus [reborn from above--spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used] for good works, which God prepared [for us] beforehand [taking paths which He set], so that we would walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us]. [Rom. 1:20]”
This all tells me that everyone is going to be held responsible, before God, for the choices that they have live by, because of the knowledge that we receive about God and who He is by what He has done; His works.
Jesus talked about the people, of His time here on earth, being able to know that He came from God because of the miracles that He did; His works.
Jesus continued, in His entire ministry, to express the importance of what we do; our works.
At the end of the sermon on the mount he tells us that the person that hears His words and does not do them is like the fool that built his house on the sand. It was the difference in what and how the two men worked that resulted in the fact that they were either wise or foolish. It was their works; their actions; that resulted in salvation or destruction.
John_14:31 but I am doing just what the Father commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Get up, let us go from here."
John_17:21 that they will all be one, just as you, Father, are in me and I am in you. I pray that they will be in us, so that the world will believe that you sent me.
John_17:23 I in them and you in me — that they may be completely one, so that the world will know that you sent me, and you have loved them just as you have loved me.
Resolutions and trying, or making an effort, are important, but Jesus clearly tell us that a tree is known by the fruit it produces; what it does!
I have never heard of an apple tree or a grape vine that had to try or make an effort to produce fruit.
If we are grafted into the vine, Jesus Christ, and we are daily, moment by moment, receiving His Divine Influence and submitting to it, we will produce fruit! The fruit of His presence inspiring us to good fruit; the actions and attitudes that comes out of us.
The Bible tells us that there are those that are grafted in but do not produce fruit. They are barren. They will be cut off and burned like the man that was given a wedding garment but did not put it on; did not do or act on what he was given.
Maybe you have been grafted in or like the seed that was sown on good soil that produced a healthy plant but you are being choked to death because you are daily sitting under the influence of the world?
May you start the New Year by weeding the garden of your life in obedience to the Holy Spirit; Sustained by the sap of Jesus Christ truly living within you producing His fruit; “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”