A POSSIBLE YOU
FINDING GOD’S DESTINY FOR YOUR LIFE
THE AGE OF ACCOUNTABILITY
When we hear the phrase, “The age of accountability” we immediately think of a child that is growing into an understanding of right and wrong. This is true in one sense of meaning but in another context we can use the same idea to refer to a time in our life when we look in the mirror and realize that we can no longer live in denial. It is a fantasy to believe that we can just float down the river while ignoring the voice of God and yet presume that God is pleased and all is well. Wherever we heard that idea and embraced its validity, we need to examine it thoroughly and make sure that we are building our foundation on eternal truth. It is worth the time spent in study to find exactly what God is saying because our eternity depends on it. Now wait a minute brother, when you are saved you are guaranteed eternal security and it does not matter what you do or do not do because our salvation is based on faith and not on works! This is a very good argument to use if you are trying to justify living the way you want, but maybe there is a lack of spiritual understanding about what this really means. How in the world can we NOT believe that when God said to do something – He meant it! Our lack of reverence for His Word has caused the modern church world to go sound asleep and along with its slumber the power and “demonstrations” of His Spirit have dried up! It is true, there are miracles happening around the world because of faith and God is honoring His Word just like He always has, but He is offended at His people who refuse to live holy and have ignored His pleas to pray and be holy. He is angry at the attitude of those who call themselves Christians yet who live like the lost. Those who continue to ignore His call to draw near to Him are running the risk of having their conscience seared and their hearts hardened by His judgment. We can see in His Word (though we do not like study these passages) that He has a temper and when His anger reaches a certain point there is devastating consequences.
Allow us to be reminded of just a few examples of what happened when individuals intentionally disobeyed God’s warnings. We can begin with Adam and Eve and how they did NOT believe that God meant what He said. Remember Lot’s wife that was told specifically “to not look back” and the servant Uriah that tried to catch the Ark of the Covenant when the oxen stumbled while it was on the wagon being transported. God had made it clear – do not touch it! The book of Leviticus is a clear instruction manual concerning the punishments for disobeying God’s laws and for example we find a story in chapter 24 about a young man who got into a fight with another man and cursed and blasphemed the Name of the Lord. They arrested him and incarcerated him until they heard from The Lord about what to do about it. The Lord spoke unto Moses to have all the people stone him – and they did. We could keep going with familiar names like King David, Samson, Ananias and Sapphira, Korah, Nadab, Abihu and Miriam just to name a few. The point is there are consequences to disobedience and the lack of fear and respect for God’s Word will result in His perfect judgment. This reverential fear of believing that Father is very serious about how we live seems to be sliding into a more relaxed view of no respect for Him at all. The image of God’s character has been deliberately softened in order to make people feel good. This distorted thinking has brought so much leniency and comfort into the concept of the Christian life and has created a rotten stinking attitude that believes the lie that God will “tolerate” our sins of disrespect, arrogance, rebellion, apathy, and willful disobedience.
It is true that God has done all the work and has given us an opportunity to be saved. He created us, gave us a sound mind, sent Jesus to die for us and used His blood as a ransom for our sin because of His great love for us. All of this is true and had nothing to do with how wonderful we think we are. However, within the fabric of this grace filled invitation, the blood covenant established a “contract” between God and those who would embrace Him by faith and accept His offer to become a part of His family. This is an agreement between a holy perfect God that cannot fail and will always be true to His Word. His promises, (like His character) is filled with His Omnipotence, His Omniscience and His divine authority to be Omnipresent. What could we possibly bring to the negotiating table in our weakness, frailty and sinful nature? All we could ever offer (and all that He has ever wanted) is our obedience. And may I say with sadness that our heart (will) is the most difficult possession to surrender. It is one thing to NOT understand this revelation but what about when we live KNOWING our responsibility and still refuse to fulfill our covenant obligation? Grace is unmerited favor that forgives us when we stumble but what about our continual willful rebellion? If we live our life with our eyes wide open and realize spiritually what we need to do and knowingly reject His instructions – where does this leave us in our covenant agreement? Is God obligated to save us whether we abide and take His covenant seriously or not? What good would a covenant be if it did not matter what was done or if the promises were kept? In fact, if God was going to save us no matter how we acted in this life, why did Jesus pay such a price and why was God’s Word filled with His commands, demands and requirements given to us? Has the salvation message been watered down to the point where we have lost our reverential fear for what He really meant? Salvation is free in the context that He provided it for us but that did not mean it is cheap because it will cost us EVERYTHING we have, all that we are and all we can do. When God has our heart – He has ALL of us!
Have we come to the place where we really do not believe Him anymore? When He says not to do something why do we think He is kidding? Do we actually think He sweeps all of our sins under the rug and pretends not to care or notice? If you were to ask the average Christian a series of questions about their behavior and it was promised to be completely confidential, you would discover not only some revolting, shocking lifestyles but more importantly they would admit that they are totally aware of how wrong they are. Many people in today’s more modern trend of religious interpretation believe they can dabble in sin and still be alright in the eyes of a compassionate God. Yes, it’s probably not going to be preached on Sunday morning but we can smoke, drink beer, be a glutton, have lustful thoughts and watch dirty movies and by His grace die and go to heaven. If you disagree we can go back and see what Jesus said to the crowd that was ready to stone the woman caught in adultery. The point is; there are spiritual levels in God and as Christians we are to be progressing and growing stronger in our desire to know Him more and to obey His will. If we are content with only His promise of heaven, then we may not be saved at all or we are walking on a dangerous course that will include Him intervening with His own way of dealing with our attitude. Whatever the situation you can be assured that we will never live in the holy of holies with a life filled with carnality – and the lower levels of being with God may only be tolerated by Him for a season. Someone needs to spread the word – there are no cabins in the corner of glory! My question is that if being in the presence of God Almighty is the greatest experience in the universe why would anyone not want to be there now? Are you ready for this? Because they have never been there! Selah.
Have you noticed that when you indulge in your favorite sin that you feel a mixture of relief and regret. It is not that we really love to sin, but we love the feelings that sin gives us and we must admit that our favorites are very powerful and controlling. Some may say, well, just stop doing it and that sounds wonderful, but for those who have been or are now prisoners to addictive idols it must be recognized that it will take more than a whim to cast them out. Do not misunderstand me; if you are ready to discard the things that are taking you away from God, He is ready to deliver you. But like we said before, if He takes away the desire to partake in our favorite sin – do not go searching for it! Let it go and praise The Lord that He gave you a beautiful miracle and it was all for the purpose of drawing you closer to Him so that He could saturate you with His presence.
Here is another scenario that is “huge” and many people have a problem with. Let’s say that you have an issue with lust. It is a secret sin that you are confident that no one knows about. You notice certain individuals and you fantasize about them as your mind is constantly on alert for a new fantasy. Your mind loves to think about lustful scenarios and you are drawn to watching videos, movies or television shows that stirs your flesh or you enjoy reading books and magazines that are laced with erotica. You seldom feel that maybe you are addicted to sexual stimulation like others are addicted to drugs and that possibly your appetite to satisfy your sexual cravings is similar to the powerful attractions to food, gossip, jealousy, pride or the love of money but of course you would never admit it. You have built your own little imaginary world and have learned how to control it. Most of the time you live content and satisfied as your old nature encourages you and approves of how you manage your affairs. This allows you to only feel conviction when The Holy Spirit gets too close to your heavily guarded secrets. It is alarming to think of the amount of God’s people who struggle with a world of habits and enticements and yet most things go unnoticed. It is true that we can live with one foot in sin and the other foot in God as it is commonly called backsliding. Can backsliders be saved? I would have to say yes, but only God knows the details. If we die in a backslidden state, I would need to accept the truth of God’s mercy and believe His judgments are just. The key would be that in order to be delivered and restored from a life of willful sin we would have needed to be born-again. If we have been truly saved by His blood and fall away from His presence, He will respond to us in order to restore our union with Him. As to whether we can fall completely from His grace or how long He will extend His longsuffering until the situation becomes critical – only He will decide. I believe what The Lord is trying to convey in our discussion is that no matter how well we hide our failures and secrets, we are not getting away with anything. Just because we can function in a lukewarm existence does not mean that we are sliding under the radar of God’s perfect awareness. These favorite sins that we feel is more important than living in God’s glory is literally “draining” us of our spiritual anointing to do God’s will. Our “idol” is preventing us from hearing His voice and all of the blessings that He would love to give us. Do you REALLY believe this? Are you totally convinced in your heart this is true? Many times we are so deceived that the only one that cannot recognize that something is wrong with us – is us. When sin rules in our heart, we cannot be filled with His Spirit which includes living in His peace, love, faith and wisdom. We want every blessing we can get our hands on but we are not willing to believe that our sin is preventing us from having them. And worse than that, we have proven over and over that we are not willing to surrender our lifestyle in order to live in the “secret place” with God. Our spirit is literally suffering in misery as our fellowship is broken with the Father all because of our love for a carnal pleasure. Many times this could be the reason that all of the doors we try to open are locked. How can we see what is happening if we are blindfolded? We must take the first step to allow God to break our destructive cycle of bondage. Satan tries to convince us that our destiny is to remain in this cycle of bondage and condemnation, while Jesus desires that we sincerely REPENT, receive His joy and keep moving forward. The revolving door of sin can be stopped today but only you can decide to take up your cross and follow Him. Our attitude about sin must come to the place where we become literally “sick” about it. We must become nauseated at how wicked we can be at times or we will NEVER stop! Our favorite sin must become revolting to us, it must become offensive to us when it comes to tempt and entice us. Today is the day to become bold and aggressive toward our flesh in order to let Christ take control and establish our new way of thinking. If we are serious about deliverance, we will cry out to God with our broken and contrite heart and plead with Him to come and help us overcome our flesh. This is not just an adjustment or painting over the rust. This is a 180 degree turn that means turning around and beginning again in the complete opposite direction. Selah