Tuesday, January 31st, 2017
Do-Gooders (Part 77)
But what do you think? A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, 'Son, go, work today in my vineyard.' He answered and said, 'I will not,' but afterward he regretted it and went. Then he came to the second and said likewise. And he answered and said, 'I go, sir,' but he did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father?' They said to Him, 'The first.'
Jesus said to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you that tax collectors and harlots enter the kingdom of God before you.'
Matthew 21:28-31 (NKJV)
Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me.
Job 38:3 (NKJV)
Consider a few unsettling questions: Does the Lord prefer open rebellion over phony-baloney compliance? Would He select an honest atheist before a cultural Christian at church? Could an agnostic's strong moral compass impress the One True Judge of right and wrong? Is a despondent heart of contrition marked as a heart most ready for the Lord? Did Jesus come to earth to save sinners rather than self-righteous, religious men?*
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Certainly, God requires honesty, even in our wrong-minded mistakes. Because hidden sins grow and fester. They become like terrible bedsores covered by a layer of pretense. Yet underneath, dark corruption spreads. Superficial Christianity, where serving the Lord is just an act, where sin is a poorly kept secret, may move some naive sheep--but not God.
Now consider one more action point: Yes, we must answer God honestly, and we cannot defer our answers, as in pleading the fifth amendment.** Silence, abstention or fence-sitting, when God calls for answers and actions, marks us as guilty of negligence.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Many Hollywood celebrities parade their sensational lifestyles. We're tempted to judge them and shun them. Although the context was different, Jesus knew similar dissenters, and they hated religious phonies.
Their openness proved good soil for Him. Therein, your mission has precedent. Truth, even in sin, seeks greater Truth, and you are His earnest carriers.
To Be Continued...
* 'I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners' (Mark 2:17).
** Short article: What does pleading the 5th mean? https://www.reference.com/government-politics/plead-fifth-mean-a6405a08ac14806
** Previous AMTC Devotion, Speechless: http://amtcdevotions.org/speechless
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Do-Gooders series.