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Message of the Month
Let Your Light So Shine
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Volume 4   No. 5                                                                                                                                     May 2, 2002
This message was first written  by Samuel M. Smith  May 2, 2002 ©2003 Up Way Publications. 
We live in perilous times. Jesus tells us that in the last days these perilous times will come so that even the very elect may be deceived.  "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." (Matthew 24:24). But we are warned, "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God." (Psalm 14:1and 53:1)
There is a matter of life force that ONLY God can give or take away. People that the doctors say cannot possibly survive do through prayer and faith in God and people the doctors use their best knowledge and techniques, their finest equipment and medications and for all their predictions of survival, the person enters his or her eternal destiny. 

We are warned against sodomy or homosexuality in the Bible and told that it is an "abomination unto God," a much stronger word than merely sin or iniquity or transgression, things that are called abominations incur the absolute anger of Almighty God. But Satan, up to his old tricks asks, "Yea, has God said?" and as with Eve in the Garden, says, "Aw, You shall not surely die!" But what started as a disease among practitioners of sodomy now infects innocent children unrelated to anyone who has been involved in sodomy through blood transfusions and other contacts. On a recent newscast, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) was quoted as saying that there are more than 900 MILLION cases of AIDS have been reported and are known to exist worldwide and that a like number of unreported cases of HIV, the precursor to AIDS are suspected.  In other words, ONE BILLION and 800 million cases are believed to exist worldwide. Many millions of dollars are being spent by researchers not only in the United States, but around the world, but while they keep saying there is hope of soon finding a vaccine, that remains an elusive reality.  So far, avoidance of sexual activity outside of marriage and avoidance of blood transfusions and similar medical intervention are the safest way to avoid AIDS and HIV infection. Except for a few "miracle" cases, the disease is nearly always fatal and painful to the victim before death. Could this be the vengeance of a jealous God? 

Let's look at some more scriptures. "For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:" (Exodus 34:14)
"For the Lord thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God," (Deuteronomy 4:24).  "Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me," (Deuteronomy 5:9)
"(For the LORD thy God is a jealous God among you) lest the anger of the LORD thy God be kindled against thee, and destroy thee from off the face of the earth." (Deuteronomy 6:15)
 

(Continued on Page 2)

 
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A Jealous God vs. Man's Pride
(Continued from Page 1)


"They provoked him to jealousy with strange gods, with abominations provoked they him to anger. " (Deuteronomy 32:16). "

God has promised healing and given laws of food and human relationships that will enhance and bless human life if we will obey them. But today, we feel we must "Keep up with the Joneses" in having a nice new car, a fine air conditioned home, telephone and television and radio and microwave and ... and ... and the list goes on. To do all this, we must work two jobs, the wife must work outside the home while putting the children in day care or leaving them in the care of others who may spoil them in one way or another. "But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:19). But come on now, God, we really need...  What are you worshipping?  What are you kneeling before?  What is your object of veneration?  Jesus specifically promised "But seek ye FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness and ALL these things shall be added unto you." (Matthew 6:33).  What "things"? He has just mentioned virtually all real earthly needs of a human being and says that the unbelieving, here identified as "Gentiles" seek these things.  Could it be that we are "Gentiles" in this sense? Are we worshipping the god of earthly things instead ot the true and Living God?

Some years ago, I was a professional photographer, making images and likenesses of people on film and photographic paper and became convicted that people were placing too much veneration and worship on the photos of weddings and babies and scenic beauties I was creating or recording with my camera. I am no longer making photos nor even oil paintings or other artwork to assure that my personal pride of accomplishment does not compete with God for my time and energy and worship. 

And how does the Catholic Church get around "Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the  fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; " (Exodus 20:3 - 5).  "Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me, " (Deuteronomy 5:9). What is the purpose of the statue in the car? the home yard? the church niche?  Do Catholics pray to St. Jude?  to St. Mary?  St. Thomas? St. Peter or other so-called saints?  To whom are we commanded to pray?  "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given anong men, whereby we must be saved," (Acts 4:12). 

"For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God: "
(Exodus 34:14), yet today we spend our time working for things and money and arguing over skirt or hair length or whether we should restrict our evangelistic outreach to print and pulpit or whether we should use radio and television and all other modern electronic means to reach the lost as well.  While we are told to "Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing." (1 Thessalonians 5:16, 17), are we complaining about what we don't have or can't do?  How do you think that makes God feel when He has created us and given us every good thing we need?  Did He really call you to a ministry or to go on a mission for Him? Then would He call you and then fail to provide all your actual needs to fulfill His command? Why do you doubt? Why shouldn't He be jealous? Whose word are we taking?  Who ARE we trusting? Are we not trusting in our own arm of flesh if we fail to trust HIM? What? Are we so proud of our own ability that we place it ahead of God's promises? Then is not our pride in our own ability a cause for God's jealousy?

The Apostle Paul expressed godly jealousy when he said, "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ." (2 Corinthians 11:1, 2).  If our Lord has said that He is preparing a place for us, His bride, and has called us to do a work, are we not then being unfaithful to Him when we exhibit lack of trust in His promises to supply all our need? 

In 1991, God spoke to me while I was in prayer and told me to go to "the land of the Caucasus where all the original Europeans came from..." for close to two months, I did doubt and really had no means of financing such an undertaking, but from the day I said "Yes, Lord, I'll go, but You will have to provide..." He did provide marvelously and miraculously and after spending my two weeks there during which I established many contacts both for my own later ministry and missionary trips there and for then UPC AIM er Sister Maria Barlett's ministry of a many-year time in T'bilisi, I was also able to leave an offering of $400.00 with Sister Barlett to help with the mission in ancient biblical Tubal. In a period of less than two (2) months, God had provided an unexpected $4400.00 to provide more than abundantly for the mission to which He had called me and He did so, not by any great offering from any one church or group but by blessing my regular taxicab driving job miraculously!

Now human pride would say, "Look how hard I worked for the cause of the mission," but in fact, I could not have made such a boast even if I had wanted to. God simply saw to it that I was in the right place at the right time to pick up fares from almost the moment I went on the road each day 

(Continued on Page 3)
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A Jealous God vs. Man's Pride
(Continued from Page 2)


until I needed to go home and rest. While other drivers in my company sat in stands for hours, I was zipping past them with paying fares and it was none of my doing. God was providing in a way I could NOT take any credit for nor have any pride in. All I did was "...stand still and see the salvation of the Lord..." (Exodus 14:13).
"For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God. " (Deuteronomy 4:24). "They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with those which are not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation. " (Deuteronomy 32:21)
"The LORD will not spare him, but then the anger of the LORD and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the LORD shall blot out his name from under heaven. " (Deuteronomy 29:20).

So we see that the Lord is fully capable of jealousy and of punishing those who anger Him and make Him jealous.  But is His anger and jealousy to be a lifetime or eternal curse to us?  "How long, LORD?  wilt thou be angry for ever? shall thy jealousy burn like fire? " (Psalm 79: 5). This was the Psalmist David's question after he had committed a deliberate multiple sin. He had lusted for Bathsheba, committed adultery with her and impregnated her, plotted to deceive the nation and then finally, had her husband murdered. Surely a jealous god, a God who cared about and jealously guardedHis own reputation could not forgive such a grievous sin,  but in fact, the Lord did restore David. Not without a penalty, true enough, but God did forgive David. 

The following verse was not to David, but to Israel after they had sinned grievously through outright idolatry but when they repented, the Lord has the Prophet Ezekiel comfort them with, "So will I make my fury toward thee to rest, and my jealousy shall depart from thee, and I will be quiet, and will be no more angry. " (Ezekiel 16:42)."

So what about us today who proudly look to our own abilities or to the achievements of modern science, medicine and technology and trust in the wisdom and brilliance of mankind instead of God? He has said, "I AM the LORD: that is My name: and My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images." (Isaiah 42:8).  So what does God feel when we give His glory to a Magnetic Resonance Instrument (MRI) or to an airplane or rocket or ship or computer? "God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth,  and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies." (Nahum 1:2)

Think I am coming on too strong? Then pray about it. See if there may be something in your own life that may make God jealous, whether you are a brand new convert or a pastor about to retire.

"Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD's wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land. " (Zephaniah 1:18).  Yes, God does pass judgment on mankind when we insist on doing things to raise His jealousy and anger.

What happens if a man discovers his bride is unfaithful to him? In nearly all cases, he will become jealous. Sometimes the jealousy ends with a divorce or separastion, but it may end with the death of the un faithful bride. When I was growing up and even after I became an adult, if a man caught his wife cheating and put a bullet through both the lover and his wife, he was not even arrested for the "justifiable homicide." So what about it when the Lord's promise of keeping us safe from harm is replaced by a gun; His promise of keeping us in health with medicine and doctors and His promise of supplying our needs with so much employment that we have  no time to pray, meditate and read His love letter to us, His Word?

"Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail  from among the children of men.
They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak. The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things: Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us?" (Psalm 12:1 - 4)

Ah what promises He does make to us! "O love the LORD, all ye his saints: for the LORD preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer. Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the LORD." (Psalm 31:23, 24).   In this case, the pride being in the Lord and obeying His word. 
"And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD. Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies." (Psalm 40:3, 4)

"Thou hast rebuked the proud that are cursed, which do err from thy commandments. The proud have had me greatly in derision: yet have I not declined from thy law." (Psalm 119:21, 51)
"Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts. To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice. An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin." (Proverebs 21:2-4).
"The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day." (Ecclesiastes 7:8)
"The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day." (Isaiah 2:11)
So how can we, as mankind, be proud of ourselves when all knowledge and wisdom comes from God?  How can we tout our modern technology and look to the arm of human flesh when, like,  an electric light switch, God can flip off our Life Force and the greatest human doctor in the world with all the latest equipment and medicine at his disposal cannot revive our lives?  So why should ouyr God not be jealous and hurt and yes, angry with us when we give our love to another - modern technology and wisdom? Think about it and then be ready to repent if you are found guilty.

"If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings," (1 Timothy 6:3, 4)

--  S. M. S.
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