Devotional for Monday July 13th

Good Morning Everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “Fresh wind, fresh fire”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “Look, I’m sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as serpents and as innocent as doves.” Matthew 10:16 (CSB)
 
Our thought for today: “Stay focused on what you know to be true.”
 
A big part of the problem we’re all faced with today as we continue to try to navigate our way through the pandemic, the economic meltdown, the social unrest, and the election year politics, is that we are overwhelmed with information. We live in the information age. We have a 24/7 news cycle that never stops, along with 24/7 instant access to social media from virtually anywhere on the planet. Consequently, we are all victims of information overload.
 
Worse, much of the information is false, misleading, or contradictory. A good case-in-point is the issue of best health practices for dealing with the COVID 19 virus. In our information-saturated world you can easily find lots of “evidence” to support whatever position you’re inclined to take on the issue. Some of the evidence is good and factual, some of it is false or misleading, and some of it is intentionally distorted to fit a particular political or social narrative. Some of it comes from reputable sources, but some of it comes from a Russian named Boris with a cheap laptop in an apartment in Moscow and posing as a medical doctor.
 
People can easily find “evidence” to support whatever position they’ve staked-out on any of the important issues of the day. Then, sadly, they often become dogmatic about their beliefs and even a little angry at, or mocking of, anyone who disagrees with them. (I’m thinking that Boris is enjoying himself immensely at our expense.)
 
In Matthew 10:16 Jesus was teaching that it’s a dangerous and confusing world out there, filled with many threats and lots of deceptions. That being the case we, His followers, have to be smart as we go about His business in this world. We do have to be as “innocent as doves”, in that our motives are to be pure and our intentions good; but we also have to be as “shrewd as serpents”, meaning that we are not to be naïve and easily fooled.
 
How do we accomplish that? We do it by staying focused on the only true, irrefutable, and unchanging truth there is – the Word of God. As Christians we need to have a clear and well-defined Biblical worldview through which we view all of the events going on around us. Then, we need to compare it all to how it lines up with God’s Word. Once we have done that, we make our decisions and take our actions. We look for clear Biblical principle and sound scriptural guidance to form our thinking about any particular issue. And then we use that to determine what is best and good. Always, we must default to scripture.
 
If there’s any doubt, any confusion at all, always err on the side of being faithful to Biblical principle. Take the course of action that most clearly fits with the Biblical principles that apply. And if you have to embark on a long and winding road of human reasoning in an attempt to somehow make the scriptures fit your preferred political or social narrative, then your reasoning has gotten you off track and led you astray. We should always check our thinking by returning to the most direct application of the applicable Biblical principles related to the issue.
 
In this confusing world of ours, I encourage you to stay focused on the only source of truth you can really trust – the Word of God.
 
God Bless,
Pastor Jim  
Copyright © 2020 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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