Wednesday, April 23, 2014

It's Never Right to do Wrong,

All scripture references, unless otherwise noted, are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible.
And it's never wrong to do right! I don't know how many times I used that phrase while pastoring in Tigard Oregon, a suburb of Portland. I still believe it too. I was a wrong doer in my youth until I met the Lord Jesus. As I have said before (to those who either heard my testimony or perhaps read my blog or web sight) I was an evil doer before the Lord Jesus saved me. I shall never forget that day. The Lord spoke to me and told me that the direction my life was going was leading me to death and that I had a choice to make. Then in tones of the most unutterable love, He said to me, "Make Me your choice, I am the only reasonable choice you have." I stood to my feet that day in June of 1965 and turned in the direction I sensed Him standing and said, "Lord Jesus if you will help me, I will serve you from this day to the day I die. That was going up on 49 years ago. I have never been sorry I made the Lord Jesus my choice.

I still believe that it is never right to do wrong and never wrong to do right. However I have been thinking a lot lately about a verse in the Bible, Proverbs 14:12, "There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." The Bible says pretty much the same thing in Proverbs 16:25. I have often used this reasoning with myself and in my teaching that if I thought I was wrong I would change my mind. There is nothing wrong with having convictions and sticking to them. But as right as I think I might be, (and if I thought I was wrong in my convictions I would change them), the way that seems right to me, the Bible says, will lead me to an inevitable death. Perhaps this was what the Apostle was thinking when he said in Romans 7:24, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" (I would suggest that you read the entire text found in Romans 7)

I am reminded of what the Lord Jesus said in His word in Matthew 5:20, "For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven." Is God pleased when we do that which is right? Yes. Can we ever do right enough to make heaven our home? Apparently not. The Apostle Paul according to his own testimony in Philippians 3:4-6 was a righteous man. He said, "Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless." I doubt if any alive then or now could come close to Paul"s righteousness. But he recognized that it was insufficient to save him.

So what did he do? He said in Philippians 3:7-11 "But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead." Is it ever right to do wrong and wrong to do right? No, never in a million years.

Let me say to you who have read thus far, strive to do that which is right. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:16-17, "Be not righteous over much; neither make thyself over wise: why shouldest thou destroy thyself?   Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish: why shouldest thou die before thy time?" I think I understand the point Solomon was  making. But the point I am trying to make is don't trust in being righteous enough to make heaven your home. After all the Bible says in Isaiah 64:6,  "But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away." Put your trust and hope in the Lord Jesus' righteousness. His is the only righteousness that will get you to heaven. If you have not done so, make Him your choice today. You will never be sorry.

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