5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
That’s a great question for you to consider. When you read God’s word, do you ask God the Holy Spirit to reveal what He meant when He led yielded human instruments to write scripture or do you rely upon yourself and perhaps the works of bible scholars or even your denomination’s position on certain topics? Brothers and sisters, only God is always right. We can be wrong, and so can those scholars and those that crafted denominational policies and positions. That’s why it’s so important for us all to rely upon God the Holy Spirit, and He will surely direct our paths of understanding. Bear in mind that even though we are spirit-led, we still can make mistakes, but that’s another post.
Pastor G and I were part of a fellowship that was sincerely wrong about a number of doctrinal issues. By the time God showed us that, many left the fellowship because they followed doctrine and spiritual leaders but not God. They couldn’t handle change, even this kind of positive spiritual change that was at the same time painful to release yet freeing so we could walk a better spiritual path. This kind of freeing still happens to Pastor G and me from time to time. It opens scripture passages in ways we hadn’t experienced before.
Yesterday was one of those times. God had us read Hosea. We had been taught that Gomer was his first wife who left him and that Hosea went out and redeemed a slave woman to be his second wife. Upon careful, prayerful examination, we found this was probably not the case. Gomer left Hosea, probably to return to being a harlot, and got herself into some trouble where she needed rescuing, redeeming. God told Hosea to buy her back and bring her into his household again. What God showed us, and what excited us so, was that Gomer’s status changed when she returned to Hosea’s household. She was no longer treated like the free woman she had been. She had clear instructions from her husband to be faithful to him.
Hosea’s relationship with Gomer was supposed to mirror God’s relationship with Israel. Israel kept backsliding, and God took her back, redeemed her, if you will. Like Hosea did with Gomer, God gave Israel the choice between obedience and disobedience in clear, certain terms.
Brothers and sisters, this applies to us as well, since we are God’s chosen spiritual people. How much do you rely upon your own understanding of how God wants you to live and love? Have you examined yourselves to see if there is any spiritual harlotry or idolatry in your life? Is God really first, or does your job, family or finances take that slot? Do your relationships with others take that slot? Are you focused unknowingly on spiritual pride or vanity? Do you take pride in thinking you know what God’s word says better than anyone else? Do you look at other believers and think you are following Jesus better than they are?
You get the idea. Ask God to show you areas of your life that don’t belong when you live and love within His parameters. Let go of the ways of this world and replace them with God’s ways. Want to think and be more like God? Read the gospel of John to see how Jesus lived while He was among us. Jesus is God, and He did say that if we know Him, we know the Father. And if we know Them both, we know God the Holy Spirit.
Spiritual family, God wants us to build eachother up and not criticize or belittle each other. He wants us to sow unity and not discord. There are some of you that attack and accuse me and other women because you think God’s word says we should not be spiritual leaders. You come across as smug and arrogant, as if you know the truth that sets us free. God has ordained me to preach, teach and witness. Nothing you do or say can change that. If you are so bold, go to God and tell Him His word has it wrong and that He has it wrong. You will have to account to Jesus for your words and attitude on judgment day.
May we all rely upon God’s understanding. May God set us all spiritually free. Be safe and be blessed.
copyright 2016, Pastors George and Sharon Billington, All Rights Reserved