Teaching Wisdom

Teaching Wisdom to Our Children (Pt 21)

  • Wisdom About Sexual Relationships

Teaching WisdomAnother powerful relational influence on children and teenagers is sex. The sexual urges often become stronger than the influence of parents and other adults who care for the wellbeing of the child. God understands the power and addresses it powerfully and clearly in His Word.

We live in an extremely sexually-permissive society. Television, movies, magazines, books for young people, social media, Internet … half-naked people in sexually-suggestive embrace … it is literally everywhere. What is a parent to do trying to raise a child today to understand the importance of sexual morality?

Continue reading

The Prophet Jeremiah

A Prophet’s Perspective About Preachers (4)

“For the house of Israel and the house of Judah Have dealt very treacherously with Me,’ says the Lord. They have lied about the Lord, And said, ‘It is not He. Neither will evil come upon us, Nor shall we see sword or famine. And the prophets become wind, For the word is not in them. Thus shall it be done to them.” Jeremiah 5:11-13

The Prophet JeremiahThe lies of false preachers are so devious and treacherous that even true preachers can fall prey to their lies.  How can that possibly happen when we know so much about false preaching and teaching from God’s Word? Shouldn’t church leaders be wise enough to know when someone is trying to ensnare and trap them?

“For among My people are found wicked men; They lie in wait as one who sets snares; They set a trap; They catch men. As a cage is full of birds, So their houses are full of deceit. Therefore they have become great and grown rich. They have grown fat, they are sleek; Yes, they surpass the deeds of the wicked; They do not plead the cause, The cause of the fatherless; Yet they prosper, And the right of the needy they do not defend. Shall I not punish them for these things?’ says the Lord. ‘Shall I not avenge Myself on such a nation as this?’ ‘An astonishing and horrible thing Has been committed in the land: The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their own power; And My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?” Jeremiah 5:26-31

In our last study about false preachers we looked at what they preach and why they preach it. We looked at how to discern false preaching and teaching in local churches, conferences, denominations, writing (e.g. articles, books), radio and television, and new media (e.g. social media, blogs, online videos). Once you become adept at discerning false preachers and teachers, you will find that distinguishing between truth and lies is something you can do with the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Unfortunately, there is one more thing we must consider and that’s how good preachers and teachers are “caught and trapped” by false preachers and teachers. While it is sad to see good men trapped by “wicked men,” it is even sadder to see how many trusting Christians who follow the truth preachers are pulled into the trap with them.

God’s Word gives us the insights we need to know how to handle this growing problem in the Church.

Continue reading

The Prophet Jeremiah

A Prophet’s Perspective About Preachers (3)

“Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, But those who deal truthfully are His delight.” Proverbs 12:22

The Prophet JeremiahGod does not want His children to believe anything that’s not true. Truth is the centerpiece of the Christian worldview. Truth is what sets people free from wrong thoughts, beliefs and actions (John 8:32). God’s Son came to earth from Heaven filled with “grace and truth” (John 1:14-17). Jesus said that true worshippers of God will worship Him “in spirit and truth” (John 4:23-24). Jesus said He is the “truth” (John 14:6). Jesus said that the Holy Spirit who lives in Christians is the “Spirit of truth” (John 14:17). Jesus prayed to His Father before going to the Cross and asked Him to sanctify believers by His truth, identifying that truth as God’s Word (John 17:17). 

However, Christianity has a powerful enemy who does not want God’s children to know or believe the truth. As Jesus reminded us about the enemy – “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.” (John 8:44)

Satan does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. That also goes for people who say they are speaking for God, but are really speaking for Satan. As harsh as that sounds to say someone who claims the name of Christ is really speaking for Satan, that is the truth.

We’ve seen God’s warnings to His children about false preachers and teachers.  We’ve seen God’s methods for discerning false preachers and teachers. Now it’s time to learn how to use those warnings and methods to guide and protect us from the lies of Satan.

Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of My pasture!” says the Lord.” Jeremiah 23:1

Continue reading

The Prophet Jeremiah

A Prophet’s Perspective About Preachers (2)

The Prophet JeremiahThere are two types of preachers in the world today, even as there were two types in centuries past: true and false. As we saw in the first part of this series about A Prophet’s Perspective About Preachers, God is quite clear about how His people can know whether a preacher speaks truth or a lie. His standard is extremely high – to the degree that one false prophesy was grounds for death.

God has given His people an important protection against lying preachers. I think of it as a “spiritual filter.” Think about the many kinds of filters in your home, office and car: air filters, air conditioning filters, furnace filters, oil filters, gasoline filters, water filters, aquarium filters, electronic filters, vacuum filters, camera filters, lens filters, color filters, light filters.

What is the purpose of a filter? At its root a filter discriminates. A filter discriminates between what is wanted and what is not wanted. A filter also removes. A filter removes what is not wanted. A filter also reveals. A filter reveals what is not wanted. What do you see when you check a filter? If the filter is working as it should, you should see what you don’t want. You should be able to hold the filter in your hands, look at the waste material you do not want, then dispose of it so that it never poses a threat to you again; whether it’s a threat to your health or house or car or anything else you own.

Most people give little thought to the importance of filters in their lives, but what if we did not have filters? What if we did not discriminate against pollutants and toxins? What would happen to the health and wellbeing of our families and friends if we did filter dangerous elements from our air, water and food supplies? We would become sick and possibly die. That’s how important filters are in life.

With those three things in mind – filters discriminate, remove and reveal – let’s look again at what God tells His people about preachers.

Continue reading

The Prophet Jeremiah

A Prophet’s Perspective About Preachers

An astonishing and horrible thing Has been committed in the land: The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their own power; And My people love to have it so. But what will you do in the end?” Jeremiah 5:30-31

The Prophet JeremiahI’d like to share a tragedy with you that’s going on right now in our land. It truly is “an astonishing and horrible thing.” Preachers are lying from the pulpit, religious leaders are ruling God’s people in their own power and, sad to say, God’s people love it that way.

Even though these are the words of God to Jeremiah the prophet more than 2,600 years ago, they may as well be God’s words to the Church today. What a mess.

Continue reading

The Prophet Jeremiah

A Prophet’s Perspective About Purpose

“Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:4-5

The Prophet JeremiahI feel a special kinship with prophets in the Bible. It started soon after leaving atheism for theism and Christianity. Each of the prophets was a unique individual, but they all had something marvelous in common: God spoke to them about fulfilling His special purpose for their lives and expected them to do it.

Continue reading

Teaching Wisdom

Teaching Wisdom to Our Children (Pt 20)

Wisdom About Friends

Teaching WisdomYour child will probably have scores of friends during their lifetime. What their friends do and say will impact your child’s life in some way. Will it be positive or negative? Will your child’s friends lead them toward or away from commitment to God? These are serious questions that will have a big impact on your child and on you.

Continue reading

Teaching Wisdom

Teaching Wisdom to Our Children (Pt 19)

Wisdom About Friends

Teaching WisdomThe third lesson in selecting friends is to know what a bad friend looks like and not let them influence you to do wrong.

A bad friend is someone who uses people for their own advantage. They love things and use people. They are selfish and want what they want no matter who gets hurt. It’s all about them and no one else. A bad friend will turn on their “friends” in a heartbeat if it serves their purpose. They will double-cross and desert others to gain an advantage or get out of trouble. They will also do everything they can to turn a Christian away from following after God.

Continue reading

SAMSUNG

Romans – The Gospel of God (Part 23)

“Through Him we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name, among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; To all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 1:5-7

SAMSUNGIn the last part of our study we looked at verse 5 – “Through Him we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name.” Now we move to verse 6 – “among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ.” Even though it’s a different verse, it’s part of the same sentence.

Paul is reminding the Christians in Rome that they are part of the special ministry God gave to Paul – “we have received grace and apostleship for obedience to the faith among all nations for His name.”

Continue reading

Teaching Wisdom

Teaching Wisdom to Our Children (Pt 18)

Teaching WisdomWisdom About Friends

The second lesson in selecting friends is that a good friend is loyal. They will not desert you, especially during tough times. They will always stay close to you and care for you. They will find ways to share your burden and lighten it whenever and wherever possible. They will enourage and support you.

“A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” Proverbs 17:17

Continue reading