God gave us up to the vile passions of our hearts and minds (Romans 1:26), because we failed to follow His admonition of ruling over the evil and sin that lied at our door (Genesis 4:7). We always seek to blame some one else for our misdeeds, our improper conduct, our lies, our mistakes, etc. But our greatest problem is traced back to Adam & Eve, back in the Garden just prior to their eviction. We, as the species of man, are easily tempted and easily fail by giving in to our temporal desires, instead of withstanding the temptation and maintaining our integrity with God and His Word. Genesis 3 is a great explanation of how man easily gives in to temporal pleasures, whether by one we trust or by our own failure to stand firm in God’s Word. It all comes down to us and a choice to take one path or another. I have always said that “choice” is both man’s greatest blessing and greatest curse. Sadly, the Bible is riddled with those who have made very bad choices and few who have made wise choices.
God once spoke with Cain and told him rather plainly,
Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, and said, “I have acquired a man from the Lord.” Then she bore again, this time his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his offering. And Cain was very angry, and his countenance fell. So the Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry? And why has your countenance fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire is for you, but you should rule over it.” Now Cain talked with Abel his brother; and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know. Am I my brother’s keeper?” And He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood cries out to Me from the ground. ~Genesis 4:1-10 NKJV
Cain’s anger was based upon a bad choice on his own part. Instead of choosing to a lesser valued offering, as many of us do or have done in the past, Cain could have chosen to give the best to God. Sadly, this is the story of many of us and the paths we have lead throughout our lives, by finding shortcuts in our work. In so doing, we fail to give our best to those who have employed us. Ultimately, WE work for God! We are reminded by the Apostle Paul:
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. ~Colossians 3:23-24 NKJV
We are also reminded by King David of the following:
The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness,
The world and those who dwell therein. ~Psalm 24:1 NKJV
So, when you look at working and who you presently work for…remember that the rewards you receive are from God, Himself! God pays you through your employer and rewards you for what you do. If you receive little, perhaps…you have done little. Consider the The Parable of the Talents:
14 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. 15 And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. 16 Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. 17 And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. 18 But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. 19 After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.
20 “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ 21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ 22 He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ 23 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
24 “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’
26 “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27 So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. 28 So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.
29 ‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ ~Matthew 25:14-30 NKJV
We are a product of our choices. Choices are not that difficult, you know…pick one or the other. Unfortunately for us, we tend to choose to do what is easiest for us and most profitable for us. Even if we have to bend our principles a little. And when I speak of principles and their bending…I mean Yoga flexibility! Because biblical principles are rather rigid and should not be bent in any direction. Your word, my word, and the word, or promise of others, should carry a promissory meaning with it. That we are willing to live up to a specific code of ethics. That we will not lie to anyone, nor cheat them in any way.
The Bible is filled with advice and wisdom. We each can read and apply the basics of what is written therein. You know: Do not steal, do not lie, do not commit adultery, do not murder. Although, we must extrapolate some other teachings from the Bible. Such as determining what is meant by the numerous parables within the New Testament and then apply those teachings to our present day lives. This seems to be one of the bigger problems, as a whole, to mankind. Don’t misunderstand me, people are mean and demand their own way…even to the point of murdering, bearing false witness or stealing from others. But it is those people who are truly seeking the ways of God, those seeking to better understand Jesus, and those who seek the answers to the bigger issues of life’s great questions that are truly enamored by the Parables of Jesus. THOSE are the people that will greatly be affected by their quest for the “Holy Grail” of the Bible and it’s teachings.
We, as the species of man, often are misguided and lazy in our desire to seek wisdom. We know, inherently, that which is right and that which is wrong. However, we tend to take the more expeditious route by doing what is easy, more pleasing and more advantageous. It is those people who stave off the desires of the heart and carnal pleasures and follow the truest teaching of Jesus. Thereby maintaining a straight line of moral standards in our lives. Jesus was our example of moral standards and we are to follow His example, not the example of those around us or those who we have some sort of hero worship over.
Hope I did not over blather like a bloviated warthog! Godspeed My Friends!!
May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!