Am I Ruled By God?

When you look at it from a certain aspect, being ruled by God is a simple consideration. A person makes a choice to give God control of their life. They decide to make the will of God the top priority and concern in decisions made, choices picked, and directions taken. While it is understood that there may be a great amount consideration about “what is God’s will in this matter,” God’s will is the primary concern.

On the other hand, being ruled by God is a complex consideration. The complexity comes in knowing one’s motives. “Am I doing this for me or for God? Am I merely conforming to the expectations of my past and other people, or am I surrendering to God? Am I trying to manipulate God or serve God? Am I trying to make the important people in my life happy or am I seeking to bring joy to God? Does this arise from faith in myself or faith in God?” Those can be hard questions to answer honestly! They focus on the truth that response to God must be internal as well as external.

Jesus said, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS’” (Matthew 7:21-23).

God’s Love, What Is Your Response?

Many passages of scripture speak of God’s deep love for mankind. In what is perhaps the greatest verse, Jesus states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (Jn. 3:16). Also, we find Paul writing, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). And John adds, “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 Jn. 4:10). All these passages point to the great love God has for His creation (mankind).

The act of love on God’s part in sacrificing His Son, is the basis of the gospel. It is His plan for man’s redemption from sin. “Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:1-4).

It is by this gospel (and no other) message that calls us to salvation. “…because God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 2:13-14). The gospel message holds the key to our salvation. Paul wrote, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes…” (Rom. 1:16 ).

God gave His Son as a sacrifice for the guilt of our sins. His act of love calls for a loving response from each of us. The most effective way one can demonstrate their love for God, is by obeying the gospel. This is done by dying to your life of sin as you are buried with Christ in baptism and raised up from that watery grave reborn, forgiven, saved in Christ (Rom. 6:3-5).

God has abundantly demonstrated His love for us through the gospel message. The question is, “How are you responding to His love?” Perhaps, at this point, it might be wise to read Paul’s description of the final day of judgment: “…when the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power” (2 Thess. 1:7-9).

The Gender-Neutral Trend

History records for us the good and evil of past societies. When looking at this, I find our society no worse, and in many cases, not even close to than the ancient societies. However, I also notice something else that perhaps should be of great concern to us. Each of these societies has been brought low by the God of Heaven for their evil.

Some time ago, a movement started that had the aim of producing a gender-neutral society. Accordingly, many institutions have been put into existence that are designed to accomplish this end. One such is the neutralization of public restrooms.

I cannot say exactly when this started, but in 2015 it was reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, that the boys’ bathrooms and girls’ bathrooms were to become just bathrooms at the Miraloma Elementary School in San Francisco, California as they go gender-neutral. This decision follows a trend that is accelerating in our nation. There are many other reports I could site, but one is enough for us to think about the implications of such a move.

God on Gender

1) Male and Female. Considering this ridiculousness, a good question is, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE?” (Matt. 19:4-5). The origination book affirms, “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Gen. 1:27). Again, it is recorded, “He created them male and female…” (Gen. 5:2). If you’re not sure which you are, you might check your birth certificate.

2) Mankind and Womankind. Leviticus 18:22 teaches, “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.” Today we are told that if you are mankind you can change to womankind, and if you are womankind you can identify as mankind. Craziness, isn’t it?

Men and women

3) Man and Woman. The creation account reveals, “The LORD God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man and brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man” (Gen. 2:22-23). Paul wrote the Corinthians, “it is good for a man not to touch a woman. But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband” (1 Cor. 7:1-2).

4) Husbands and Wives. The Ephesian letter instructs, “Ephesians 5:22-33 NAS95 22 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife…But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands…Husbands, love your wives…and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband” (Eph. 5:22-33).

5) Father and Mother. Did you know that the terms “dad” and “mom” or “father” and “mother” are now considered offensive to some in our society? The Book of God says, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh” (Gen. 2:24). Paul wrote the Ephesians, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER…” (Eph. 6:1-2).

Boys and girls

6) Sons and Daughters. The generations of Adam find “sons and daughters” being born (Gen. 5:4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 26, 30). When you were born, were you a son or a daughter?

7) Boys and Girls. Zechariah 8:5 says, “And the streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in its streets.” When a child is born, the first words are often: “It’s a boy!” or “It’s a girl!” Right? Some school systems no longer refer to students as “boys” and “girls”. Teachers are told, “Don’t use phrases such as ‘boys and girls,’ ‘you guys,’ ‘ladies and gentlemen,’ and similarly gendered expressions to get kids’ attention.” Instead of “boys” and “girls”, call them purple penguins! Divide them by whether they prefer skateboards or bikes, or whether they like milk or juice. So, are we going to have the milk room and the juice room, instead of the boys’ room and the girls’ room?

He and she

8) He and She. ‘He” and “she” occurs in 160 Bible verses. Here’s a sampling: “When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate” (Gen. 3:6). You ought to be able to tell a she from a he and a he from a she! The law commanded, “A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD your God” (Deut. 22:5). The Corinthians were asked, “Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him, but if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her…” (1 Cor. 11:14-15). Speaking of nature-teaching, did you observe what Noah took with him into the ark? “…two of every kind into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female” (Gen. 6:19). Ever see a trans dog or cat?

Conclusion

Friend, we might ask, “What’s next?” It is time to recognize the sovereignty of God and accept what is obvious to all. There is a difference between male and female. So, let us accept God’s design and forget about bringing “strange fire” before Him (Lev 10:1; Num 26:61). The results of this “strange fire” are disastrous.

Remaining Strong in the Lord

It is hard to remain strong when one is discouraged. And discouragement is one of the nastiest tools the devil has at his disposal. If he can discourage a Christian, he can keep him from doing the will of God. Discouragement creates a type of spiritual paralysis within the heart that keeps a Christian inactive before the Lord. It then becomes a question of how do we keep ourselves strong in the Lord when the devil is working so hard against us? Let’s look at some suggestions.

Listen to the word of God

The word of God tells us He will always be there for us (Hebrews 13:5-6) So, the best way to overcome any adversity in life is to go to God’s word. Contained within is all the instructions we will ever need to fight the good fight of faith and rise victoriously. In the eighteenth chapter of the book of Luke we read, “Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart” (Luke 18:1).

Jesus then tells the parable about the “Persistent Widow”. The judge in the parable did not fear God nor regard man. But, because of the widow’s persistence, he finally gave in and gave her the justice that she craved. What we must understand is that the judge is by no means a comparison to our heavenly Father, but rather he serves as a direct contrast to Him.

When we read in the word of God about our heavenly Father, we find that He is very much in tune with our needs. Matthew 6:8 tells us that God knows our needs even before we ask. Matthew 7:7-11 reminds us that human fathers know how to give good gifts to their children. The question is then raised, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him” (Matthew 7:11).

Cast your anxiety (cares, worries) on God

Peter wrote, “casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7). When we are faced with adversity, it is easy to forget the strength and comfort we find in the Lord. Too often we wait until the world is in shambles before we remember the great love God has for us. Too often, we forget to approach Him in prayer.

Some may contend that worry is simply part of life. They may even call the burdens that weigh heavily upon their minds “legitimate concerns”. But whatever a person may call them, they are not healthy for productive Christian living. Therefore, we must always remember to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness. If we do so, all these other concerns will be taken care of (Matthew 6:25-34).

Remain Thankful

It may sound strange, but thankfulness before God goes a long way in keeping us strong in the faith. All can remember struggles of the past that they thought they would never make it through. Yet, it happened. The struggles were overcome because one’s faith was grounded in the Lord. The key was looking to Him in prayer and remaining steadfast.

Therefore, we look to the current obstacles in our path and face them with newfound confidence knowing that our God is still with us. This was exactly what David did before facing Goliath. He remembered God’s deliverance from the lion and the bear. Then he looked at the Philistine and boldly stated that he would be defeated like one of them. The next time you are faced with adversity and discouragement, remember the great power of prayer. When we bow our heads in prayer, the line of communication between our hearts and our heavenly Father is open. He hears us and will answer speedily (Luke 18:8).