Tuesday, November 22, 2011

When One Door Closes, Another Door Opens



John 8: 42-47: "Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God."

John 8: 47: "He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God."

Look at the simplicity of this Scripture: ". . . ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God."

If someone understands Greek, then it makes sense that if someone speaks Greek to him, he will know what he is saying. If someone is of the devil, not only is he a good liar, but his life is a lie. And those of the devil will readily believe his lies because he is speaking their language. Demons of a feather flock together.

If someone's life is a lie, it means that he has no interest in the things of God. He may have a form of Godliness--he may go to church three times a week, memorize Scriptures, donate money to proper charities--but he denies the power of God by his actions, by his life. The life IS the sermon. Truth and life come from God, not the devil. "We worship Him in Spirit and in truth." The devil is spiritual death and lies; those who follow the devil are spiritually dead and liars.

When we speak with someone who is hungry for God or who is truly surrendered to Christ, it is not a great labor to speak with him. The conversation flows effortlessly--it is like pouring water into thirsty ground. It is all very edifying and there is a great sense of well-being.

Once I was hitchhiking in Texas and this guy picked me up. We had great fellowship. He stopped to see this guy about something. He talked to him for five minutes and then we hit the road. He told me that talking to that guy about the Gospel was like pouring water on concrete--it didn't soak in, it ran right off. The guy had a heart of stone.

The first week in November of this year, I hitchhiked to Bozeman, Montana. I knew a family in Bozeman and I helped them move from their apartment to their new house on the east side. It took a couple of days to move all of their things.

As I was leaving their house, I said to the wife, "See you later."

She replied, "A lot later!" (Her husband was outside and did not hear her say that)

She almost sounded ungrateful. I am guessing that "a lot later" could mean six months or it could mean twenty years.

As I hitchhiked south out of Bozeman, I was picked up by a Christian. We had very good fellowship. It was very redeeming. He was very much alive in Christ; he was not into churchy church churchianity.

When one door closes (or slams shut), another door opens.

"They had a form of Godliness, but denied the power thereof. From such turn away."

7 comments:

  1. Amen, Tim. Truly, Life is the sermon. Observing a Godly life as well as a spiritually dead, ungodly life both serve to teach us. Thank you for sharing your wonderful life in service to our Lord.
    God bless.

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  2. Randy: I have always thought that the lives of Godly men and women were there to instruct us, to be examples on how to live our lives. But the lives of unGodly men and women are also there to instruct us on how NOT to live.

    If we continue to have fellowship with lukewarm Christians, then what kind of witness is that? Sometimes the Lord has us separate ourselves from lukewarm Christians or false Christians--and this is a powerful warning to them and a great witness of Christ working in our lives.

    Show me your life, not just your words.

    I Corinthians 4: 20: "For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power."

    *****

    I was in this bookstore yesterday and I saw this book titled "The Welsh Revival". Of course, I thought, the Welsh Revival of 1904. No, the book was about the Welsh Revival of 1859. Someone wrote in that book that a key evidence for being a Christian is a hatred for sin your life. How many people preach this from the pulpit?

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  3. The sentence in the preceding comment should read: "Someone wrote in that book that a key evidence for being a Christian is a hatred for sin in your life." It is worth repeating.

    "In the mouth of two or three witnesses, let every word be established."

    I am trying to establish something here.

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  4. This is true, the fear of God is hatred of sin. If we are not grieved and saddened by our sin, we have grown hard and calloused.

    Lord, soften the hearts of your people once again that we might repent of our sin of apathy, compromise and hardness towards the Living Word and Holy Spirit.

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  5. My experience with depending on man is reflected in this quote from Dimitru Duduman:

    "Hope in man always leads to disillusionment, but hope in God never disappoints."

    But I don't hold it against anyone and try to sow grace, because I am sure they think the same thing about me...

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  6. Doors have closed and doors have opened many times in my life. The door closing on this certain situation was not what I saw with my physical eyes, but what I saw with my spiritual eyes.

    As I hitchhiked from Idaho to Bozeman, Montana, there was a definite foreboding in my spirit. I did not know what was up. There was not peace in my spirit. There were other things that led up to the door closing on that situation. I debated on whether I should even publish this post, but the Lord prompted me to do so. After I published it, the Holy Ghost fell very heavy on me that evening; the Presence of God was very strong all that night, so I know that I was obeying the Lord.

    Maybe this also means that I won't be hitchhiking through that part of Montana any more--and it may mean something more strategic than being treated so coldly by someone's wife (which reminds me: "from out the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks").

    This also reminds me of the last time I hitchhiked to Washington, D.C. back in 2007 and the last time I hitchhiked through Southern California two or three years ago. The Lord engineered my circumstances to show me that I may not be passing that way again. You just knew in your spirit that the end of something was at hand.

    The Lord can be very subtle.

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  7. I was grieved when I read of your experience in Bozeman. It brought back a flood of memories of similar experiences I have had and once again I was reminded of how disappointing people can be. For me it was a good reminder to keep my eyes on God and Jesus and I will never be disappointed.

    Thank you for sharing.
    JD

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