An easy life

Don’t we all feel that, every now and again, God could just give us a little break, make life a bit easier for us? We are, after all, His children, His heirs, the ones He chose. I know that I have often emphasized how hard times and trials are actually good for us. How we need to go through very challenging times in order to grow spiritually and to gain patience, understanding and character. We know all that, it’s just that life gets really hard sometimes. I was watching a video today where a speaker was saying that once we get saved, God doesn’t see us as we are anymore. He sees the blood of Jesus. When He looks at us, He sees Jesus. So would we be justified in saying that if God saw His only Son when He looks at us, He should give us a little more of what we want and a little less of what is supposed to be good for us.
Let us take a look at the life of Jesus. Maybe we will be able to understand better. After Jesus was baptised by John the Baptist, Jesus was taken to the wilderness where He fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. This is Matthew 4:1-10. Then Satan came to Him and Jesus was firstly tempted by food. He was extremely hungry. How would you feel if you hadn’t eaten for almost a month and a half? The devil told him to turn stones into bread. There was certainly no reason He couldn’t do it, but He would not give in to the enemy. Every time that Satan tempted him, Jesus came back with an answer from scripture.
Then, of course, the chief priests and the Pharisees continuously questioned Jesus on His authority. He couldn’t go anywhere peacefully.
Matthew 12:9-13 gives the account of how Jesus healed a man with a withered hand on the Sabbath. The Pharisees started to plot how to kill Jesus after this incident.
Matthew 12:22-24, Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see. All the people were astonished and said, “Could this be the son of David?” But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, “It is only by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons.”
Luke 4:28 – 29, All the people in the synagogue were furious when they heard this. They got up, drove Him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff.
He was criticized over and over and over again for doing good. Eventually He was arrested, tried, found guilty without reason, tortured, humiliated and hung on a cross to die.
Now you tell me when last all these things, or any of them, for that matter, happened to you? Just think about is for a while. We are tempted, but not to the extent that Jesus was tempted. Most of us haven’t healed many people of the Sabbath, or any other day for that matter. And if we did, were we judged for doing it? And when was the last time you drove out a demon and your salvation was questioned? Maybe I shouldn’t ask when one of us was run out of town for our faith. Very few people have such assurance of their salvation that they are willing to die for it.
Jesus was confronted with all these things and many, many more in the space of three short years. God did not give Jesus an easy life while He was on earth. His only begotten son did not live in the lap of luxury or have everything that his heart desired. His blessings were truly all saved up for heaven. If Jesus didn’t have a ‘bed of roses’ kind of life, who are we to desire one?
I’m not saying that everything will always be a struggle, but I know that if we live according to what Jesus taught, we should be prepared to live the kind of life He did. I do know that if we do the things the way Jesus did them, we are also going to have blessing stored up for us in Heaven.

Swept Clean

I suppose it’s not just okay to tell someone that you don’t like them. Imagine going up to people and telling them in their faces that you don’t like them. I shudder to think how it would be received. How would I receive it if it was me? I don’t really think that it is the person that is not likeable. It is the spirit behind, or inside of the person that causes that person’s behaviour. I think that because every person has a place in them for a spirit, there must be some kind of spirit in everyone. Because there are only two kinds of spirits, the Holy Spirit of God, and evil spirits from the devil, it will be either of these that will be present in people.

Luke 11: 24-26, “When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when he comes, he finds it swept and put in order. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first.”

Matthew 12:43-45, “When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest, and finds none. Then he says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when he comes, he finds it empty, swept, and put in order. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first. So shall it also be with this wicked generation.”

This parable says that when an evil spirit is driven out of a person, there is a void which has to be filled. If it is not filled then the void is open for the evil spirit to return, but it will not return by itself, it will bring with it 7 other spirits more evil than itself. If that void isn’t filled with the Holy Spirit that person is going to be in much more trouble than when he started out. This also tells me that people cannot walk around with nothing inside that space that wants a spirit residing in it. And it’s not a matter of believing that there is a God or believing that the devil exists. As far as the bible is concerned this is what it is. I speculate that if someone is a good person, but he isn’t a believer, there will be some kind of spirit in him which isn’t very wicked.

John 8:44, 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.

Here Jesus was speaking to Jews, not Gentiles who had never even heard of God. These were supposed to be God’s chosen people.

Luke 1:15, For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink. He will also be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb.

John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit while he was in his mother’s womb. What an amazing thing to happen. I am assuming that Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit from conception because He was conceived by the Holy Spirit.

Sometimes people behave in certain ways because they are being influenced by the devil. It doesn’t necessarily make them bad people, they are people who are being misled. Christians should pray for discernment so that they can recognize what is going on and make a difference in their lives.

What I’m getting at is that we shouldn’t just judge a book by its cover. It is quite possible that a person could be under the influence of some spirit and we should rather love people so that they can start to see the Holy Spirit in us, than judge them and spoil all our chances of winning their soul for the Kingdom.