No wise person would want friends who always are selfish. Do take note that a selfish person can cause harm to anyone especially friends and family, in his or her vain pursuits for self-gratification. This harm can be financial losses, loss of reputation, and even loss of life to name a few. Would you still want to be friends with such friends who are selfish?
If you don’t want a selfish friend, it’s only fair to ask of you to never ever be selfish yourself. If you are not selfish it doesn’t mean that you to be self-harming nor self-deceiving. In fact, you’re better poised to help your friends and family. You can progress in life by being a blessing to others and yes it’s totally possible. So, if you choose to never be selfish and simply follow the Word of God you will be found truly worthy in this life and in the afterlife.
Verses for reflection:
- Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful. (1 Corinthians 13:4-5)
- Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. (Philippians 2:3)
- Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor. (1 Corinthians 10:24)
- For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. (James 3:16)
- Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered. (Proverbs 11:25)
- Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. (Romans 15:2)
- A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion. (Proverbs 18:2)
- The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these. (Mark 12:31)
- Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you thinks that he is wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. (1 Corinthians 3:18)
- Incline my heart to your testimonies, and not to selfish gain! (Psalm 119:36)
- But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24)
- I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)
- And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Mark 8:34)
When the Lord speaks through a person, what they say will be backed up by scripture. But also, when the enemy speaks, he will use misapplied scripture to defend his poison. How will you distinguish? If you’re relying on your intellectual knowledge of scripture to distinguish, be careful, you’re up against the one “more crafty than the rest.” The truth is that you must know the voice of the Lord. If you don’t, you’ll believe the misapplied scripture of the enemy’s agent before you believe the Lord’s servant!
Disclaimer: This post is not about bashing nor maligning your Church elders but rather knowing the difference between them and God.
All praise to the Lord God who gives elders in the Church to help us in the mission of preaching the Gospel to all nations and making disciples of them. May the Holy Spirit lead and guide them in the grace of God. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man. (Psalm 118:8)
Never trust your Church elders more than God. Now I do not say disrespect them but rather give due respect to them. However that being said, never make your Church elders a god above the Lord God. This will put you in deep error and eventual darkness if you refuse to repent in this area.
Now the Bible says in Jeremiah 17:5-8 :-
5 Thus says the Lord:
“Cursed is the man who trusts in man
and makes flesh his strength,
whose heart turns away from the Lord.
6 He is like a shrub in the desert,
and shall not see any good come.
He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness,
in an uninhabited salt land.
7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
whose trust is the Lord.
8 He is like a tree planted by water,
that sends out its roots by the stream,
and does not fear when heat comes,
for its leaves remain green,
and is not anxious in the year of drought,
for it does not cease to bear fruit.”
By the above verses it is very obvious that we as believers in Christ are not to make flesh our strength but rather are to trust in the Lord God. To make it clear, we cannot let any man, even the one’s who are the Church elders tell us not to pray to God. It’s very obvious that any Church elder who hinders you from worshiping Jesus Christ is a manifest heretic claiming to be a Christian!
So what I just said, is this a new teaching? No, not at all but something that needs to be reiterated. The following verses of Jude 1:3-4 confirm this:
3 Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
Each of those who profess the Christian faith are already warned about certain people who for the record; pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. And now such people might not be, each and every person you see in Church but just a few you need to beware of. The basic thing would be to never give heed to any words and philosophies by any one at any level in the Church which contradicts the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
It’s very rare that anyone in the church might tell you to not worship God, because they know that they will be found out and tackled very soon. However do be on your guard against such people.
There is a higher chance of people who may misdirect all the glory which is due to God to themselves. No matter what healing you receive by anyone praying for you or laying their hands never praise them like how God is to be praised. It’s one thing to be thankful to the Church elders and another thing to give them the kind of respect which God only deserves. So do know the difference and do not put your elders above God, ever!
Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit. (Matthew 15:14)
Then there is a subtle trick that the Devil uses to mislead people and most of them fall for it. He simply causes certain gullible Church elders to downplay the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. So to not offend others, they will avoid preaching against certain sins or all sins. But they are okay with offending God though, by continuing to work their heresies. Some even show the Gospel as a guideline instead of a reality to follow. By making certain things of Gospel such a repentance, good works, prayers etc as optional by falsely assuming that doing the will of God was done away with the Cross, they lead more people to damnation that even the more common vilest of vile sins could. Stay away from their ways and words and you will do a great honor to God.
Just before I close, like I mentioned earlier, not all Church elders are into wrongdoing. In fact their service to God is commendable and their sacrifices for the Kingdom of God are fragrant and undeniable. May God reward them for this. However do be on guard against those who seek more honor for themselves than the Lord God.
Christ be with you!
Colossians 3:1-11 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming.In these you once walked, when you lived in them. But now put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and foul talk from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old nature with its practices and have put on the new nature, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. Here there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free man, but Christ is all, and in all.
We are encouraged by the Bible to set our minds on things above and not on things on earth. It does not mean you totally neglect your earthly duties. It means that you realize that you have to follow wisdom that come above, which is from God in heaven.
There is good reason to do so, as when Jesus shed his blood by dying on the cross, he took upon himself all of your sin. So when you believe in Jesus you believe that he came to take away your sins, your old life of sinfulness is taken away and you become a new creation. You may not be dead in the physical sense but in spirit you are dead to sin and there is a promise for you in Christ that you will be resurrected. You need to therefore live with that in mind.
You must there keep away from all sinfulness because sin was your old nature, so you can’t keep walking in it any more. You need to walk in the new nature, which the holiness which Christ has imparted to you. Therefore, you need to set your mind on Jesus above and not on things of this earth.
Here are a few scriptures you can reflect on:
Romans 6:13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.
Romans 8:13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.
Galatians 5:19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery
1 Corinthians 6:11 And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
2 Corinthians 5:14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.
1 Peter 2:24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”
Isaiah 55:6-7 Seek the LORD while He may be found; Call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way And the unrighteous man his thoughts; And let him return to the LORD, And He will have compassion on him, And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.