By Roy Burner - Minister of the Gospel
Message for today is more needful as we see division rather than unity; national pride being ripped apart rather than united, racism raising its ugly head in many countries, with an attempt to wipe out various unwanted elements that would help to unite; if allowed to nurture rather than destroy.
There are many who are seeking resolution to problems at hand; as one sees division dominate many lands, but refuse to accept the fact that the message for today is already in God's Word: This is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another (1 John 3:11).
A Bible commentary noted: From the beginning its origin the eternal law of truth, is of love itself. It was written in Adam's heart in a state of innocence, delivered in the law of Moses, and taught by Christ. It was no upstart notion, no new law, and to be regarded in the most respectful manner. (Comment)
The message for today can be found in what apostle Paul wrote so many years ago: If I have not charity (or love), I am become as a sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. Though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not love, I am nothing.
Though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long, and is kind, love envies not; love does not brag on itself, is not arrogant. Love seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil; rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endure all things. Love never fails (1 Corinthians 13:1-8) is truly a much needed reminder in a message for today.
The message for today is not a new one; but an old one heard from the beginning, that we should love one another (1 John 3:11). Again, the characteristics of such a love: Does not behave itself rudely, not easily provoked, thinks no evil against others, does not relish iniquity, nor avoid the truth like a plague.
We see bickering, hatred, division, whose end result is identified as the message for today as well: Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand (Matthew 12:25).
The message for today is that we are seeing the fulfillment of the warning of the prophet Isaiah, so very long ago: Those who call evil good, and good evil; put darkness for light, and light for darkness; bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter. Wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight. Justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him.
Whose end would be as the fire devours the stubble, and flames consume the chaff, their root (or evilness) shall be as rottenness; because they have cast away the law of the Lord, and despised the word of the Holy One (Isaiah 5:20-24).
A newspaper article quoted a former president: Progressives like himself must mold how America thinks and make the media report things the way they want. Such a message for today would be damaging, rather than uniting, if the agenda sought after is not for the benefit of the nation as a whole.
We are presently seeing such happening, in many nations of the world, by those who are seeking to mold the way of thinking; by influencing others, to adopt ill-conceived notions. We see many nations divided, because of various factions opposing one another, rather than uniting for the good of the country.
The message for today is that we are seeing a misplaced love towards the things of this world. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust thereof; but he that does the will of God abides forever (1 John 2:15-17). The writer signifies the world as being the evil desire that is so much a part of human existence.
When Satan caused the fall of man (Genesis 3:6) he appealed to the those three areas of weakness; lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. They are even more prevalent today, being rapidly consumed through an electronic age that makes access easily available.
A wicked messenger falls into trouble: but a faithful ambassador (or messenger) beings health (Proverbs 13:17). As the cold of snow in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger for he refreshes the soul (Proverbs 25:13). Hear this, all you people; give ear, all you inhabitants of the world (Psalm 49:1).
Such words has a universal application for all of mankind to hear. However, one has to be willing to hear, and receive. Scripture reveals that the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it (Hebrews 4:2).
The message of today is still reflective of God's love from the beginning to the present day. It is not a new one; except to the one who has yet to receive it: That God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son (the Lord Jesus Christ), that whosoever believes in him, should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).
The Parable of the Sower reveals: There went out a sower to sow; some seed fell by the wayside, some on stony ground, some among thorns, and some on good ground (Mark 4:3-8). The sower was sowing the Word of God; with all having heard the Word; but with different responses.
That which was sown by the wayside heard the word, but Satan came immediately, and took away the word that was sown in their hearts. Likewise that which was sown in stony ground heard the word, immediately received it with gladness, but had no root in themselves, for when tribulation or persecution came, for the word's sake, immediately they were offended.
That which was sown among thorns heard the word, but the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires of other things entering in, choked the word, and it became unfruitful. That which was sown on good ground heard the word, received it, and brought forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred (Mark 4:14-20).
This identifies four kinds of people: Unresponsive, impulsive, preoccupied, and those who takes it to heart, bearing the fruits of faith, obedience, and fidelity. It is unfortunate that in many Western nations, where the Word of God is so readily available, there are many who fall into the first three categories.
I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God (or divine assignment) which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God (Colossians 1:25). The apostle Paul's assignment was to fully preach the Gospel.
He informed Timothy, a young evangelist, to preach the word; reprove, rebuke, and exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine, for the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears they shall turn way from the truth (2 Timothy 4:2-4).
Churches, in many Western nations, are deviating from the call to promulgate the whole truth; allowing the tickling of the ear, by not fully imparting the Unadulterated Word of God. Preaching is the God ordained means to prevent defection from the truth.
Those who appeal to itching ears tell people what they want to hear, not what they need to hear. The message for today should be no different than yesteryear; except for those who water it down to suit their own fancy or lifestyle, rather than encourage one to walk the strait and narrow way that leads to eternal life through Christ Jesus (Matthew 7:13-14).
The message for today should not be towards division, adoption of ungodly ways, marching in pursuit of one's own agenda, but of unity and one's well-being. In a Constitution Convention that was deadlocked in bitter controversy, a delegate rose and made the following plea:
I have lived a long time and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth; that God governs in the affairs of men. We have been assured in the Sacred Writings that "except the Lord build the House, they labor in vain that build it."
I therefore beg leave to move that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessing in our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed in business. Such a plea should be a message for today concerning every God-fearing nation!
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When they say peace and safety then sudden destruction comes upon them, as travail upon a woman with child, and they shall not escape.
The aging of man is a realty with no fountain of youth to intervene. There is the process of growing older and showing effects of increase of age with progressive changes.