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The Parables #19

The influence of God’s people is overall beneficial – Continued

We find the same wonderful truth in the OT.

Just think of this word “Good” as in good seed. This word, the strongest word used of ‘good’ means “a harmonious completeness.” There are many people in the world who are considered “good” and we would have to acknowledge that they do good things, show love and kindness to others and yet they need to be born again before they can enter heaven. That puzzles many. There is something ‘incomplete’ about there goodness. There is something lacking. They do goodness is marred by a desire to gain favour with others, to gain the praise of the world or even to try to get to heaven. That makes their goodness faulty, incomplete!
The Christian seeks to do good “to the glory of God”! That makes their goodness complete and whole!

Look at these verses as we further consider the good that God’s people do in this world. “And Laban said unto him, I pray thee, if I have found favour in thine eyes, tarry: for I have learned by experience that the LORD hath blessed me for thy (Jacob’s) sake,” Genesis 30:27.
“And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the LORD was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field,” Genesis 39:5.
“And Elisha said, As the LORD of hosts liveth, before whom I stand, surely, were it not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, I would not look toward thee (Jehoram the son of Ahab), nor see thee,” 2 Kings 3:14.

It is made clearer when we consider the world’s view of the Blessed Saviour. “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not,” Isaiah 53:3.

“But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.” Psalm 22:6-8. As with Christ, so with the believer!

How undervalued are the people of God. “Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day,” 1 Corinthians 4:13.  “But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions; partly, whilst ye were made a gazingstock both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly, whilst ye became companions of them that were so used,” Hebrews 10:32-33.

“We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised. Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace; and labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day,” 1 Corinthians 4:10-13.

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The Parables #18

The influence of God’s people is overall beneficial.

The good seed is ‘wheat’, verse 29.

How beneficial wheat is! Everyone has breakfasted upon it today in one form or another. Either as a cereal or toasted bread. The Prairies of Canada and the USA are known as the ‘breadbasket’ of the world because of the huge harvests of wheat they produce. In like manner the ways, the actions of godly people benefit mankind. Furthermore, Christ calls His people the “light” of the world; the “salt” of the earth. Both of these things benefit mankind.

One enlightens and the other preserves.

Paul illustrates the preserving power of the believer. Read – Acts 27:22-26.

“But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss. And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man’s life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee,” Acts 27:21-24.

Peter states the same truth. Read –  2 Peter 3:9. God is longsuffering toward a wicked world for the sake of His elect. He will bear with the world’s sin until the last off His elect are saved in this age. Then judgment shall fall!

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The parables #17

THE GOOD SEED PICTURES CHRISTIANS – (Continued).

We will continue the point we were making the last time we were together, just before you had your mid-term holiday, just over a week ago.

We are looking at Matthew 13:38. “The good seed are the children of the kingdom.” We are God’s planting in this world. We are part of God’s kingdom and must ever put God’s kingdom first.

This is what the apostles did. They put God’s kingdom first! The enemies of the gospel in their day said: “Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us,” Acts 5:28.

Note the apostles’ response! “Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men,” Acts 5:29.

That choice has had to be made by God’s people throughout the ages and it has brought suffering, persecution and death to countless multitudes of the saints of God.

The time of such intense conflict draws near again! God’s people will have to show courage and oppose the desires and demands of the world and stand firm for the laws of God’s kingdom.

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The Parables #16

THE GOOD SEED PICTURES CHRISTIANS.

“The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom,” verse 38.

1. Christian, you are the Lord’s planting. “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever,” 1 Peter 1:23. “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen,” 2 Peter 3:18.

Within us has been planted a new nature which will manifest itself and which will require us to reject the world and its ways and rather obey God and His law.

“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you,” Matthew 6:33. This will bring us into conflict with the world when the world demands that we disobey God and submit to its commands.

This is what happened Peter and John. They put God’s kingdom first!

The enemies of the gospel in their day said: “Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us. Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men,” Acts 5:28-29.

That choice has had to be made by God’s people throughout the ages and it has brought suffering, persecution and death to countless multitudes of the saints of God. The time of such conflict draws near again! Have you the seed of God planted within you? Is there a new nature springing up in you? Give thought to this today.

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The Parables #15

God’s activities are beneficial to the earth. “Sowed good seed.”

The influence of this seed is good, morally good and helpful.

Isaiah 61:1-3 sets the standard for the Saviour’s ministry and points to the work He continues to carry on through the preaching of the gospel and His works of Province.

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.”

These verses form the text of the Saviour’s first recorded sermon, Luke 4:16-21.

Many verses are found in the New Testament which enforce this truth.

“And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them,” Matthew 4:23-24.

See also Matthew 9:35, Acts 2:22, 4:27, 10;38.

All these indicate the character of the Saviour’s ministry and of the work of God amongst men.

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