SAVING YOUR LIFE
Matt. 16:26, "For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?"
We often think it is the other person that will lose their life, while we are the one with the victorious Christian life. But let us "...dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you." II Cor. 10:12,13.
Compare the lives of the following. Joseph of Arimathaea, John 19:38, was a "secret" disciple for fear of the Jews. Jonah placed his opinion above God's instructions and had to spend three days and three nights in a whale's belly. Eccl. 2:18-23, many spent their lives accumulating possessions only to die and leave them to another. Heb. 11:23-27, Moses had the choice of enjoying the pleasures of sin for a season, or esteeming the reproaches of Christ to be greater. The question is this: When your life is played back at the Judgment Seat of Christ, will it resemble Joseph of Arimathaea or Moses?
How Can I Save My Life?
1. II Peter 1:1-4, By accepting the exceeding great and precious promises of God. It is by these promises that we become partakers of the divine nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world through lust. In other words, it is impossible to be the kind of person Christ wants us to be without His promises. It is impossible to avoid the corruption of sin without His promises.
2. Heb. 11:6, "But without faith it is impossible to please Him..." We do not accept the promises of God by sight, but by faith. This means that in the everyday affairs of our lives, we are continually looking into the Word of God to see what God says about any decision we might make. We do not make everyday decisions without consulting our "owner's manual., the Word of God.
Now, stop and think with me just a minute. When was the last time you made a decision about your everyday life based on a promise of God? Do you have a promise of God for the place you live, the church you go to, and the place you work? Are you escaping the corruption that is in the world through lust by accepting the promises of God concerning the places you go, the clothes you wear, the things you talk about, and the things you expect from life? Or have you made the decisions of your life based on what you see everybody else doing? When you make a decision, do you talk it over with your friends, neighbors, and family members instead of God? Do you talk things over with friends, neighbors, family members and God, putting men's opinions on the same level with God's promises? Or do you "talk things over" with God, letting His will guide your life, regardless of what friends, neighbors, and family members think? When was the last time you earnestly went to God in prayer, desiring His leadership in the "little" things of life?
What Are the Promises Of God?
It would be impossible to list all of God's promises in anything short of the entire Bible. But here are a few of the promises that mean the most to me.
1. Salvation. Acts 16:31, "...Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house."
2. Eternal life. John 6:37, "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out."
3. Possessions. Matt. 6:33, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
4. Comfort. John 14:1, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me."
5. Protection. Psalms 34:7, "The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them."
6. Receiving. Psalms 37:4, "Delight thyself also in the Lord; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."
7. Health. Proverbs 4:20-22, "My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh."
8. Long life. Proverbs 10:27, "The fear of the Lord prolongeth days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened."
Notice that many of God's promises are conditional. That means God will fulfill those promises only after we have fulfilled God's requirement for that promise. For an example see #6, Ps. 37:4. God said He would give us the desires of our heart if we delight ourselves in the Lord. He will not give us the desires of our heart if we delight ourselves in the things of this world.