Choosing What To Believe
"Consider carefully what you hear," he continued. "With the measure you use, it will be measured to you ó and even more. Mark 4:24
Whether we like it or not in todayís world we are polluted with junk mail and commercials that are completely irrelevant to our lives. What makes things worse is the business world makes every effort to keep us informed about new products and services we donít want or need. Most of the time we throw what we call Junk mail in the trashcan without being concerned with its content. For the most part we have no interest in the exaggerated sales pitches we receive. Sometimes the easiest way to sort mail is to stand over the trash can and drop what obviously belongs there.
On the other hand we turn our radio and television to see or hear something only to select what we consider the best of what is on. Iíve noticed that TV advertising is not based on what the product will do but on what the advertisers perceive will gain your attention. Some commercials are ridiculous that it seems foolish to believe everything you see and hear.
The point is do we listen to everything we hear and see? More often we become like the person standing over the trash can and sort out what we see and hear almost immediately without looking any further. On the other hand we pay attention to anything what gives us pleasure since anything that lacks relevance goes ignored. For the most part humanity makes a diligent effort to learn what they consider an essential part to make a living and devours everything we can about the things that has captured our interest. However, some subjects such as reading, writing and arithmetic are mandatory for everyone to understand.
The bible teaches us to be prudent in all our ways so the basic rule to being prudent demands careful consideration in every decision we make. The effort we make to know and understand any given subject gives us a method to make informed decisions. Additionally the knowledge we possess gives us a sound way to contrast what is known to evaluate and determine the unknown.
Wisdom is a shelter as money is a shelter, but the advantage of knowledge is this: that wisdom preserves the life of its possessor. Ecclesiastes 7:12
Solomon considered the purpose for his proverbs was for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of insight (Proverbs 1:2). Everyone has cognition, a way to perceive and can achieve understanding through the knowledge available to mankind. On the other hand the bible says my people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). The reason some do not hear is that they do not belong to God (John 8:47) rather they hear, see and understand life from the worldís viewpoint (1 John 4:5). Because of Godís parental authority Christians are commanded to use their senses to perceive Godly knowledge but most of the time base their knowledge on what the preacher says and hope for the best not having direct knowledge from their father to know what to expect?
The wise man takes time to absorb and retain godly knowledge so he may apply truth to his goals and plan a way to prosper and succeed. We learn and apply methods that successful people use to have success. Joshua received a similar plan from God.
Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Joshua 1:8
There are times when people are given the same advice so much they no longer pay attention to what being said. However a prudent person listens to both sides of the issue specifically to know the pros and cons of the matter. In other words what you do not know has tremendous impact on our lives with consequences that go beyond failure. Failure means you have to correct the fault and start over. So consider this, in this life there may be a second chance to make things right but after Judgment day there is no forgiveness for sin.
During our life time we make a number of split second decisions in which some are good while most go sour. How much thought did you give to the decisions that went sour and wasnít your decision based on what you understood on the matter? The bible tells us;
For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Matthew 7:2
Do we fully comprehend what is in a measure? A measure has a known attribute established by a recognized standard by which you may know its content. The measure God is talking about is the way you determine the value of thoughts and principles of the people around you. Are you measuring people by what is right in your eyes? Therefore knowing the manner or way God discerns good from evil becomes the standard by Godís children discern the difference between good and evil and whether itís right or wrong in Godís sight.
What is the measure we use to determine whether itís good or evil in Godís sight? Godís word gives is a standard by which we may compare our physical life to a life God approves of. In addition God has given us a plan to follow that will make you into a leader who deals prudently with others knowing the difference of good and evil.
As we pointed out Godís word is the measure God wants us to understand because they represent the thoughts and ways God lives by and demands we adopt. In learning Godís word we develop insight into the benefits Godís people received for doing good and the consequences of those who sinned against God. We learn that God wants his children to be insightful, discerning, and wise to know the abundant life found in Jesus Christ.
Joshua asked God for the wisdom to lead Godís people into the promise land was told to do what the majority of people do today. God told Joshua to go to His school and learn what it takes to be successful in life. Learn how life works from those who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil (Hebrews 5:14).
Still its one thing to learn the details of another personís life but to have a better understanding of why they did things in a certain way you have to organize the facts and meditate on them. Meditating on the facts helps you to understand the outcome from the way they believed and lived. To some the bible may be a book worth reading but when taken to heart it is what we need to know to understand and distinguish good from evil.
There is a practicality in practicing Godís word for the wise man builds his life on solid foundation of truth and the wisdom of God (Matthew 7:24). With age comes wisdom so letís take to heart that God is the Ancient of Days and has acquired the knowledge to prosper and be successful.
Successful people mimic the behavior of other successful people but God is far more successful than the men and women of the world imitate. Paul said imitate me because I follow Christ because Christ learned to devote his life to doing everything his father instructed him to do (John 12:50) and obeyed in reverent submission (Hebrews 5:7).
Success comes with application of principles of wisdom that work. Understanding what works in real life is half the battle but putting them into practice guarantees success. Still success in life is not found in riches but with whom we trust.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
Abundance of life came with Jesus since placing our trust in our Messiah has a promise of eternal life. Yet those who believe and trust in Christ will be blessed by responding according to their beliefs. Itís that kind of faith that pleases God. 06/01/2015
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