Archive for August, 2012

Isaiah 5:23 Eroding Freedoms

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , , , on August 26, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 5:23 Who justify the wicked for a bribe, and take away the rights of the ones who are in the right! 

In the previous verse, God was pronouncing judgment on those who brag about how much alcohol they can drink. These folks also brag about their bar tending skills.

Also under judgment are those who take money or material gain to prop up, endorse a scoundrel. The adjective “wicked” or rasha in the Hebrew assumes the person is guilty of a crime. Thankfully in 21st century American culture we have evolved past this…right. This currently is on full display with an election cycle coming up this November of 2012. We hear about how great this candidate is and how smart he/she is. They must be elected. Think of all the good things they are going to do for us. Never mind the fact they have not paid their taxes. Never mind the fact their gay partner is running a brothel out the basement of their house. No big deal, just give me a little something, we will overlook this.

Second, the rights of the innocent are ignored. Personal freedom erodes. Does this sound familiar? It is happening all around us in multiple aspects of our culture. Take the War on Terrorism. Look at the personal freedoms surrendered in the name of safety. The government has been allowed unprecedented liberty to wiretap and eavesdrop on communication.

A small town in Missouri is trying to pass a law that would allow officers to inspect private property without the owner’s permission if the local judge finds probable cause to issue a search warrant for the purpose of proving existence of violations. The officers would be allowed to search at “any reasonable time” and with “any reasonable cause”. The counter argument is protection under the 4th Amendment of the Constitution, privacy in regards to search and seizure of private property.

God is for the protection of personal freedom and rights within the boundaries of moral, just law.

Isaiah 5:20 Contrasts, Evil is Good

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! 

Turn on the television or open the newspaper. These concepts pervade 21st century American culture. How the culture defines evil is not how God defines evil. How the culture defines good is not the way God defines good.

those who call evil good… Take the topic of gay marriage. There are elements of the culture who would tell us this is good. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have protested in the past. They were not getting married until everyone could get married. Gay marriage is a right. Imagine this, Hollywood etiology is at odds with God.

those who call good evil… The culture and the courts have deemed prayer in school to be inappropriate. The argument is the separation of church and state. The state should not be in the business or endorsing a particular religion.

The apostle Paul endorses a lifestyle of prayer in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 to pray without ceasing. The Bible would allow for prayer in school.

who substitute darkness for light… This is a black and white issue with God (idiom and contrast intended). The contrast is clear. See 1 John 1:5 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.

God is the definitive source of light, spiritually and physically. He physically created light in Genesis. In Revelation 22:5 it is stated God is the source of physical light. And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.

Spiritually, we know God is morally perfect and without sin. 1 John 3:5 You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin. The “He” is Jesus. Jesus is God. Jesus is from the Father. There is no sin in the Son or the Father.

who substitute bitter for sweet… God’s word is compared with sweetness. The context of the verse is God’s law, precepts, rules, and instructions in Psalm 119:103 How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth! What God has to say is sweeter than honey itself. Psalm 19:10 says this about God’s commands and judgments. They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.

According to God, to follow the words of other gods is associated with bitterness.

Jeremiah 9:13-15 The LORD said, “Because they have forsaken My law which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice nor walked according to it, but have walked after the stubbornness of their heart and after the Baals, as their fathers taught them,” therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, “behold, I will feed them, this people, with wormwood and give them poisoned water to drink.


Isaiah 5:18-19 Mocking and Taunting God

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , , on August 11, 2012 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 5:18-19 Woe to those who drag iniquity with the cords of falsehood, And sin as if with cart ropes; who say, “Let Him make speed, let Him hasten His work, that we may see it; and let the purpose of the Holy One of Israel draw near and come to pass, that we may know it!” 

It is those who drag and lug around sin. These guys have a cart full of sin. They are proud of their sinful ways, they keep dragging it about from day to day. It is a lifestyle being pulled by ropes. God says, “You folks are toast”.

They challenge God. “Bring it! Let’s see you in action God. Prove it to us. God won’t really do it. Come on and judge us, we are sinning…”

This same attitude of mocking God is observed two other places in Scripture.

Look at Matthew 27:39-44 where Jesus was mocked on the cross.

The irony: God the Father is judging sin at the cross. The Son is taking the place of those mocking Him. Look at the list of sinners in Matthew 27 passage: robbers, chief priests, scribes, and local elders. These are the folks who gave Jesus a lot of grief. He died on their behalf and paid for their sins too.

Look at the list of items endured by Jesus. He was stripped (v. 28). He received a crown of thorns (v. 29). He was mocked (v. 29). They spit on Him (v. 30). He was beaten on the head while wearing a crown of thorns (v. 30). He was stripped again (v. 31). He was crucified (v. 35). Verbal abuse and insults continued during the remainder of the process. A spear was thrust through His chest to insure He was dead (John 19:34).

2 Peter 3:3-4 Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.”

The pattern in Isaiah 5:19 and 2 Peter 3:3-4 is the same. Sinners will continue in their lifestyle and sinners will continue to mock God. Humanity has not changed whether it is approximately 700 years before Christ or at least 2000 years after Christ. Humanity thinks this is the way it has always been and this is the way it is going to be. Man sees no proof that God is actually going to judge. The sinner presses the action. He dares and taunts a patient God.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

Results of Pride

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on August 5, 2012 by paulthepoke

Proverbs 16:5 Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; assuredly, he will not be unpunished.

Pride is a punishable offense and it must be dealt with.

Romans 1:22-23 Professing to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

Is this a sign of the times or what? Look at our 21st century culture. We worship ourselves. Secular humanism is a religion of American culture. We are very tolerant. We are into worshiping animals, trees. It is worship of the creation or Pantheism. The smarter we think we are, the more foolish we bcome in the eyes of God. Worship whatever, just not God of the Bible.

Galatians 6:3 For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

We have all seen the type. Someone who thinks they are better than someone else. Who knows what the reason is. Some may think they are better because of their smarts, money, looks, or the car they drive. Gods says this does not define who you are. What man values as something, God states it is nothing. It is this mindset of being “a big deal”. It causes self-deception.

Proverbs 30:12 There is a kind who is pure in his own eyes, yet is not washed from his filthiness.

These people are as pure as the wind driven snow. They have no faults. They look in the mirror and see perfection. Look at all the good things they have done. Their accomplishments, they have told us. We must understand; they are a blessing to mankind.  One small problem, they are human. They still sin. They cannot solve their sin issue on their own accord with a perfect and holy God.

Proverbs 29:23a A man’s pride will bring him low…

The mental attitude will cause the down fall. Dishonor is the result.

Proverbs 28:25a An arrogant man stirs up strife…

This attitude leads to arguments, contention, quarrels, and debates.

Proverbs 21:4 Haughty eyes and a proud heart, the lamp of the wicked, is sin.

This type of attitude cultivates sin. There is a figurative agricultural reference in the Hebrew.

Proverbs 21:24 “Proud,” “Haughty,” “Scoffer,” are his names, who acts with insolent pride.

The Hebrew indicates there is an overabundance and overflow of presumptuousness and arrogance in the verse. Prideful mental attitude results in prideful actions.

Proverbs 26:12 Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

The self-proclaimed mentally elite, they are very smart. The simpletons and dummies the brilliant mock and make fun of have more of a chance according to God. The genius would scoff and shrug God’s commentary off in self-confidence.

Proverbs 26:16 The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who can give a discreet answer.

The sluggard is the kind of person who lays around and does nothing. They view the world from their couch with remote in hand and have all the answers. The lazy know more than everybody else, just ask them. They see the complex world with unbelievable clarity. The sluggard darn sure knows more than experts. The irony of the proverb is the one who is doing nothing thinks they are great applying what they know. It is all just talk.

Proverbs 15:25a The LORD will tear down the house of the proud…

One will not find security in their fancy home.

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