And The Lord Said....
I love that statement. Think about it! The creator of the Universe is about to speak. The God who was and is and is to come wants to tell you something. The bible contains roughly one hundred and sixty-three verses that prepare the reader for the coming words of God Almighty by saying "and the Lord said...". Through out history, from Genesis to Revelation, the living God of the bible has spoken and made himself know to man. God also spoke audibly through man, as indicated by "Thus saith the Lord". This phrase is used around four hundred and thirteen times. There are other phrases used to indicate that God had something to say. The first recorded time God spoke to man was in the Garden of Eden. The bible records it as, " And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die" Genesis 2:16-17.
When God speaks we should listen. The wisdom of the ages, directly from the heart and mouth of our creator, is at your finger tips. You walk by it on a daily basis, you may even set your cup of coffee on it in the morning as you prepare for the day. How often do you pick it up with the intent of listening to God. Through the personal and individual work of the Holy Spirit God has something he wants to tell you. Key to receiving this information is knowing that what you hear in your heart must match what is in the scriptures. God will never speak to your heart something that does not line up with his word. That may seem like an obvious statement, but in these last days our enemy is working over time introducing half truths and lies to confuse and lead astray the elect. It is important to compare any revelation, or word of knowledge with the bible, if it does not match what God has said in his word, then it is not from God.
So how do we guard our hearts and minds from being led astray? It is very simple. It is so simple that most people over look it and when told what to do, write it off as simple minded. Or when told agree, but soon forget the simple formula. I believe the answer to living a life that maintains scriptural integrity lies in three words, ask, seek, and knock. Jesus tells us in the book of Matthew "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened" Matthew 7:7-8 ASV. Simple, but powerful. One of the first things that I had to learn about writing is that if you want to be a writer you must do one very important thing, and that is write. The same principle applies to living a genuine Christian life. If you want to stay on the "narrow way", you must keep the road map in front of you and read it frequently.
Have you ever driven in a large, unfamiliar city? It is a daunting task. Most of the the large cities I have driven in are criss crossed with oneway streets, dead ends, and strange oddities that defy description. Without a guide, or a clearly defined route you may be destined for a long and weary day of back tracking and chasing your tail. In the early days of a America many families made there way west in covered wagons. They followed the dream of independence and self sufficiency. But in the middle of this lovely country lie areas so desolate and uninhabitable, the unprepared settler was forced to turn back. If they chose to continue, they were forced to abandon much of their load in order to pass through these badlands. I remember seeing pictures of wagon trails strewn with possessions that settlers were forced to leave behind in order to lighten the load. Jesus said, "For narrow is the gate, and straitened the way, that leadeth unto life, and few are they that find it" Matthew 7:14. Could it be that the pathway leading up to the gate to heaven is covered with tracks all around it where people have circled around and back tracked looking for something that was not there and left behind the dreams of knowing God to follow an imitation?
Psalms 119:103-105 says, "How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Through thy precepts I get understanding: Therefore I hate every false way. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, And light unto my path." In my life I have had to do some backtracking looking for the trail that I lost while my eyes were not on the Lord. I always found my way back by going to the scriptures and letting my focus once agin be on God and applying the three principles mentioned earlier, ask, seek, and knock. How about you today? Where are you on the road to heaven? Have you lost the trail? My prayers are with you, don't give up. Ask God to show you the way and then move towards his voice. Remember these words, "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life: no one cometh unto the Father, but by me John 14:6.