26 July 2009

What's in Your Grocery Cart?

Holiness (means) In the highest sense belongs to God (Isa 6:3), and to Christians as consecrated to God's service, and in so far as they are conformed in all things to the will of God. Personal holiness is a work of gradual development. It is carried on under many hindrances, hence the frequent admonitions to watchfulness, prayer, and perseverance. Charles Spurgeon said "Christ will be master of the heart, and sin must be mortified. If your life is unholy, then your heart is unchanged, and you are an unsaved person. The Savior will sanctify His people, renew them, give them a hatred of sin, and a love of holiness. The grace that does not make a man better than others is a worthless counterfeit. Christ saves His people, not IN their sins, but FROM their sins. Without holiness, no man shall see the Lord." See we have allowed the world to cloud our better judgment at home, work, and in the church. How? Through the T.V, media, radio, magazines, books and I think most of all a lack of meaningful Bible reading. We as Christians greatly enjoy talking about:

The Provisions of God

Christ defeating Sin on the Cross

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit

But we do seldom or rarely, talk much about our responsibility to walk in Holiness unto the Lord who is or should be our greatest treasure! By living holy lives. We are to strive, pursue for holiness, because without it! As Charles Spurgeon said “You will never see the Lord!” The Hebrew writer wrote this “ Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:” These are the words from God, who is our final Authority! Without holiness we will never enjoy Him, who is Holiness itself. We are commanded in Scripture to think on godly virtues and we are commanded to practise them in our lives.What do I need to do to attain a Holy life and mind? Paul gives us 8 virtues to a holy life that is acceptable unto the Lord found in Philippians chapter 4 found in this one verse.. I call it a grocery list verse of items that you need to get or an itinerary for the Christian so that nothing is missed on a daily basis. We as Christians have a list that we are to live by and we need to exam ourselves, not one another, but ourselves on daily minute by minute basis to this list!

1. True
2. Honest
3. Just
4. Pure
5. Lovely
6. Good
7. Excellent
8. Praiseworthy

Ask yourself is the Lord to be obeyed in all things whatsoever He commands? Or is it just some of them, some of the time? The answer to that question is simple: it’s either Yes or No (Rom 6:16) Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one's slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? We must be slaves unto righteousness and we do that by obeying and following our grocery list

1. Holiness begins with whatever is True

True (means) sincere, what is truthful. (John 4:24) God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." We cannot come to this place and worship him without the truth of His Word piecing our hearts and spirit. We worship not out of rituals and traditions but by the power of the Scriptures that transforms our lives.

2. Holiness begins with what is Honest

Honest (means) honorable, possessing a high mind, a careful regard to integrity, righteous character. (Rom 13:13-14) Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry (wild parties, sexual orgies, brawls, riots) and drunkenness, not in lewdness (sexual immorality) and lust, not in strife and envy (jealousy, zeal). But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts. Living a life pleasing to God that is displayed in our outward behaviour, because you have been redeemed by the Blood of Jesus. Making no provisions (no wrong ideas, or planning) to fulfill my flesh
3. Holiness begins with what is Just

Just (means) an upright life, a right conduct, righteous living. A Christian should be just in all his dealings. (Prov 20:7) The righteous man walks in his integrity (morally innocent) ; His children are blessed after him. Live what you believe, which is the Bible! The conduct of good men proclaims their sound principles. You do this God says “his (your) children are blessed”. Do we realize good things pass on to the children of the godly, they follow by example. Something most of us are failing at, I know I do at times!

4. Holiness begins with what is Pure

Pure (means) properly clean, that is, (figuratively) innocent, modest, perfect: - chaste, clean, pure. (1Tim 4:12) Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity. How important is it to live a pure life especially for those in ministry, because we are being watched by this world, looking for every opportunity to destroy us! How can I preach to you if I’m not walking inwardly and outwardly displaying a life of purity living a life that others can follow by, we must be examples to this fallen generation.

5. Holiness begins with what is Lovely

Lovely (means) pleasing, agreeable, kind, deeds that spring form love and inspires love in others. Friendly towards... (1Peter 4:8) And above all things have fervent love ( means to be stretched to the limit, to be labored) for one another, for "LOVE WILL COVER A MULTITUDE OF SINS."
Stretching out loving kindness toward one another, always ready to forgive a brother or sister of insults or unkindness by showing a passionate love toward the body of Christ.

6. Holiness begins with what is of Good Report

Good Report (means) worthy of approval, trustworthy, courtesy, deserving of praise, well spoken of, that is, reputable, commendable. We as Christians need to be an example to others by living a life consistent to the gospel of peace. (Phil 1:27) Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel. Are you living a life that is of good report? Are you concerned for others? Saved or Unsaved!

7. Holiness begins with what is Excellent

Excellence (means) valuable, pure quality, uprightness of mind, If there is anything truly virtuous. We need to be walking worthy in the eyes of a Holy God! (Ruth 3:10-11) Then he said, "Blessed are you of the LORD, my daughter! For you have shown more kindness at the end than at the beginning, in that you did not go after young men, whether poor or rich. And now, my daughter, do not fear. I will do for you all that you request, for all the people of my town know that you are a virtuous woman. She exemplified a life of excellence, she did not engage in immoral behaviour, she was a loyal woman to Naomi. Can people say that about you and me. Us wretched sinners who have been saved by that great pearl of great price, the Lord Jesus Christ? Are we being loyal in our testimony towards others whether saved or not saved?

8. Holiness begins with what is Praiseworthy

Praiseworthy (means) a commendable thing, worthy of praise, Anything worthy of praise, or that ought to be praised. (Heb 13:15) Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. God desires the praises of His children for His wonderful work on the Cross. Jesus wants us to be filled and live separate lives from this world, living a holy life is the “fruits of our lips”

When you get all your groceries on that list, we are to do something of great importance. Look what Paul says "we are to mediate on them". Why? Because they are vital for the Christian life. See meditate (means) to attend, practice, to be diligent in, a habitual discipline. It is as Paul said to Timothy in (1Tim 4:15) Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. John MacArthur says “Believers must be disciplined to add to their faith the proper attitudes, thoughts, and actions described in this passage. Only then will they develop spiritual stability in their lives.” Only then will we be able to live holy! It begins here. How is your walk doing according to these 8 virtues? Are you continuing to strive, persevere for holiness? If you not! We must turn to the Shepherd and ask Him to search our hearts as the Psalmist said in (Psalm 139:23-24) Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting. The Holy Spirit must reveal any unrepented sin in our hearts which always keeps us from that genuine fellowship found in 1 John chapter one. We must realize that He is the only one who can search, try and lead us to calm waters as a Good Shepherd does. He is the only one who can lead us in holiness through His righteousness Son, Jesus Christ. So my plea to you is will you not mediate on these important holy virtues? They were purchased for each and everyone of us, at such a great price on the cross of Calvary. Please I beg you to not read over these 8 important virtues which were written for our instruction and to direct us to live holy lives that are acceptable which according to the Bible is; our reasonable service. So what's in your grocery cart?

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