Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Option 1: We can Ostracize and Reject Pagans

Photo by Nathan Rupert
Scripture: 2 Timothy 3:1-9
But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come.  For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these.  For among them are those who enter into households and captivate weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.  Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of depraved mind, rejected in regard to the faith.  But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all, just as Jannes’s and Jambres’s folly was also.

Insights: Monday we learned the world is full of pagans.  Yesterday we began to examine how we think about these pagans.  We also were informed there are really only two options as to how we are going to respond to these pagans.  Today we will look at the first option, which is to ostracize and reject them.  As I shared yesterday, when I go to Walmart and I see people that look, act, talk, dress, smell and any other descriptive word you wish to use, and they are different from me, I all too often ostracize and reject them.  I think we in the church of the United States see them as being the enemy when in reality Satan and his demons are our enemy.  These people are just lost and in need of a Savior.  I, however, see and respond to them as if they are the enemy.  As a result, I ignore them and do not engage them in conversation.  My actions say, “I would rather have you spend eternity in hell than for me to get outside of my comfort zone and tell you about Jesus.  Beloved, you may feel this way at times yourself.  When we live life this way we are actually telling pagans, “Hey, you, clean yourself up, and then I will tell you about Jesus because then you will be worthy.”  How terribly sad we do not remember life from the vantage point of our own preconversion depravity.

 1. Will you ostracize and reject the pagans?
 2. In what ways have you ostracized and rejected pagans in your past?

Prayer: Father, forgive me for ostracizing and rejecting the very people for whom Your Son died on the cross.  Let me see them as You see them, which is as sheep without a shepherd.  Amen.

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