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Monday, August 1, 2011

Being Deceived Can be Deceptive

Hebrews 3 : 12 - 13, Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called "Today," lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.  NKJV

Jesus warned us that in this world, offense would come. However, He also said, "Woe" to the one who caused the offense. Living by faith can be very tough at times simply because trials come to us all.  Let's take a journey back in time to when the Jews were entering the wilderness. It doesn't take long before they realize that there were no restaurants or hotels to stop at on their way to the Promised Land.

Even though they couldn't find a place to lodge or an IHOP to dine in late at night, God still managed to take care of their every need while they wandered. They allowed the hostile environment to cause them to harden their hearts against God. Now they had a real problem on their hands. It's one thing to be wandering around in a wilderness, but when they turn their back on the One who is taking care of their every need, things can get real nasty.

Can you imagine something physical happening to you that would ever cause you to turn your heart against God? It seems foolish to think that the chosen people of God, who had been delivered out of Egypt's bondage, would allow natural situations to cause them to react with spiritual rebellion against their Provider. 

Now we're getting to the reason for today's word from heaven. If a natural event causes someone to depart from the living God, then know that it is the result of the deceitfulness of sin. Only sin that is in the heart will justify sin in the flesh as a legitimate reaction to hardship and backslide from God.

Satan wants people to believe that it's God causing us trouble. However, if you think for a moment, it was Satan, who started all the trouble in the beginning. Faith is more than just believing in God. True faith is followed through with obedience. The reason God allowed the children of Israel to perish in the wilderness after forty years is because they wouldn't obey His voice; they had hardened their hearts in unbelief.   

Hebrews 10: 35 - 39, Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise: "For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him." But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul. NKJV

When life gets difficult, and you feel as though you're slipping, hold on! Jesus will pull you out of the troubled waters. Look to Him until you see His hand moving in your situation. Our faith pleases God, and He will move heaven and earth to save us.

Waiting on the Lord,
Pastor Asa Dockery

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