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  • Incredulity of Thomas
God’s Will, Man’s Responsibility

Objective: To show that despite God’s Sovereignty, Man is still responsible for his actions.

a) Intro to the concept of an antinomy, the story of light.

If a substance is a wave, then it is not a particle. If a substance is a particle then it is not a wave.

For instance, a radio wave is not a particle. It is a wave. Dust on the other hand is a particle. It is not a wave.

Anybody here ever study physics? Anybody here ever meet a physicist? Anybody here ever sit a physicist down and ask him if Physics had all the answers? Because if you did, you’d find out that a real physicist will tell you that we really know very little about the world we live in. And you see I can speak from experience here, I can add a personal note because before I became an Engineer I spent 3 years studying Physics as my major. Yes, I majored in Physics. But more than that, not only have I studied oodles and oodles of physics but I also have a legacy of Physics, because you see, my father is a professor of Physics. And if you ever have a chat with my father he’ll tell you…He’ll tell you that if any physicist says they know everything, then they really are not a Physicist.

The great Albert Einstein himself said, Mankind knows less than one millionth of 1% of anything.

Yet the purpose of physics is to understand the world as it is. The purpose of physics is to come up with a logical solution to the fascinating wonders of the universe.

So then you would think that physics would at least have answers about common everyday things. And in a sense we do. And in the same way you would think that physics would never come up with two seemingly contradictory explanations about the same thing. And that would make sense. Wouldn’t it? But it isn’t so.

You see there is this fundamental problem that physicists have been trying to comprehend for the last few hundred years. They have been trying to understand a very common, very necessary, very well known and very well used substance. That substance is called light. Yes light.

You’d think by now since we have created lasers that can burn a hole through three quarter inch steel,

and by now since we have used lasers for fine surgery,

and by now that bright blinding car break lights are being made from small led bulbs that are smaller than the nail on my pinkie,

and by now since we can even harvest energy from sunlight,

you would think that we’d have discovered all there is to comprehend about light.

But you see there is a problem. The problem is that we can’t explain how light works unless we explain it as though light was a wave.

And yet if I were to say that light was a wave, that would cause even more problems because there are things about light that I cannot explain unless I were to say that light was also a particle.

But you see that raises even more problems because if you remember, if something is a wave, then it cannot be a particle.

So if light is a particle then it cannot be a wave and if it is a wave it cannot be a particle.

You see, we cannot understand it. We cannot comprehend it. But it seems to be so.

So what physicists will tell you is that light is a particle and light is a wave, despite the fact that those two concepts are seemingly contradictory to each other. But the physicist has learned to accept both these facts. He calls it an Anti-nomy. And he will tell you that that is fine. But how can light be a particle and a wave at the same time? To our finite minds, of course, the thing is inexplicable. It sounds like a contradiction, and our first reaction is to complain that it is absurd. But both are true by experimentation, thus it follows that they must be held together and not played off against each other. Light is a particle, but it is also a wave.

By now most of you are thinking that Neil has got his days and times mixed up, he must think that this is Thursday night when he teaches digital logic design at UC Berkeley. Don’t worry, I have not got this mixed up with Physics 101.

b) Review of the last week

i. God has planned everything,

ii. God can’t learn etc

iii. God is sovereign, nothing can change his plans

iv. Man’s purpose is to glorify God and/by enjoy(ing) Him forever.

And to assure you of that we will review what we covered last week.

And we do need to review what conclusions we came to last week because we need to remember what we decided last week about the nature of God. We cannot continue this week unless we have the facts from last week solidly under our belt.

If you missed last week please contact me and we can arrange for you to get a copy of last week’s talk if you want, so that you can see the proof behind our conclusions.

The points that we agreed upon were this, (I’ve included a few of the many proof texts that we covered):

The first point was:

1. God is God i.e. He is sovereign and he has planned everything.

Ps 139:16 your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

We decided that God had planned everything, from the beginning of Creation to the end of time. He has laid it all out and nothing can change His plans.

The second point was:

2. God knows everything thus He can’t learn and He can’t change His mind.

1 John 3:20 For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.

The third point was:

3. God is Sovereign and nothing can change His plans.

Ps 33:10 The LORD foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples. 11 But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.

And the fourth and final point was:

4.

The chief end of God is to glorify God and enjoy Himself forever.

The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying God forever.

c) Reestablish that this all is founded on the accuracy of the Word of God. The Bible has to be accurate. We cannot really do any of this if we are not convinced that the Bible is accurate.

Now it is very important that right from the beginning of this series of talks, we realize that we have to be convinced about the accuracy of the Bible. If we have any doubt about the original Greek and Hebrew texts of the Bible or any doubts about it’s being the inerrant Word of God we will short circuit ourselves.

Everything I tell you today is dependant on that fact. If you aren’t convinced about the fact that the Bible is God’s Word and that it is pure and undefiled then you should come and have a long chat with me or David Underwood or any of the “Apologetics” students amongst us.

Let me repeat that. Everything I tell you today is dependant on the fact that the Bible is the uncorrupted, inerrant Word of God.

d) Pose the question “are we robots?”

So having said all that we now come to today’s topic. Are We Robots? Or as I have called it, for very silly, inexplicable unknown & probably unintelligent reasons, Domo Aragato Mr. Roboto.

First of all it would do us good to remember why the question even came up. The reason this question comes up is because all last Sunday we kept saying: God is sovereign and He has everything planned. Yes, He knows everything but most of all he planned everything.

Ps 139:16 your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.

So according to the Bible i.e. according to God, every single day of our lives were planned or ordained or if you wish predetermined before we were even born.

So then we are forced to ask ourselves.

Why on earth is it worth us coming here?

Why on earth do we need to do anything?

If God has it all planned then whatever He planned will come to pass. He certainly doesn’t need me.

If God has it all planned, why do I need to get up in the morning, why do I need to try my best, why do I need to run the race, why do I need to excel, why do I need to work hard and most of all why on earth do I need to witness to other people? Aren’t we all just a bunch of mindless Robots?

e) Stress Man’s Responsibility.

And that is a very good question. In fact that is a wonderful question and I’m glad you asked it because let me tell you what I have learned about Man’s responsibility.

Turn to Romans 2:5-9.

Rom 2:5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. 6 God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” 7 To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. 9 There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile;

Let’s reread verse 6 & 9

6 God “will give to each person according to what he (i.e. the person) has done.”

9 There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile;

Now flip over to Rev 20:12

Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books.

And the dead were judged how? according to what they had done?

John 3:18, turn there

John 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

These people who don’t believe are condemned, why? because they didn’t believe? It’s their responsibility.

Matt 11:20-24

Matt 11:20 Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. 21 “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths. If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. 24 But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”

What was Capernaum going to be held responsible for? For their unbelief.

2 Thess. 1:8 He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power

Over and over again the Bible says that man is responsible for his actions.

Over and over again the Bible says that man is responsible for his sin.

Over and over again the Bible says that man is responsible for his own unbelief.

We are responsible for our actions. We are responsible not only for those things that we do but we are also responsible for the things that we do not do. And this is especially so when it comes to spreading the Word of God. Turn to 1 Cor. 9:16

1 Cor. 9:16 Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!

Now flip over to Ezek. 33:7-9 and if this doesn’t scare you then nothing will. Ezek 33:7 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 8 When I say to the wicked, `O wicked man, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade him from his ways, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood. 9 But if you do warn the wicked man to turn from his ways and he does not do so, he will die for his sin, but you will have saved yourself.

Who is being held accountable for not speaking out to dissuade him? Who is being held responsible for not spreading the word of God?

Who is being held responsible for not warning the wicked man?

Who is? We are, if we do not obey God.

We are responsible for our actions, we are responsible for how hard we try. Take the parable of the 3 servants, each were given 5, 2 and 1 talents of money respectively. The ones that were given 5 and 2 talents used it wisely and invested the money, the 3rd servant who got the single talent never used his one talent for the glory of his master. When the master came back what did the master say? (can elaborate and act this out, if time).

Flip to Matt 25:24-30

Mat 25: 24 “Then the man who had received the one talent came. `Master,’ he said, `I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’ 26 “His master replied, `You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest. 28 “`Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29 For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

We are responsible not only for our actions but also for what we do with our lives. It’s fitting that the word here for a large sum of money is identical to the word that we use for the gifts that God has given us. Like the talent to sing. Or the talent to write.

Yes, we are indeed responsible not only for our actions but also for what we do with our lives.

If we waste our lives away we will be judged,

if we squander our lives away watching mindless TV we will be judged,

if we are wasting valuable time doing nothing but spending it selfishly on ourselves we will be judged,

if we have been given the gift of singing or the gift of teaching or the gift of writing or the gift of compassion or whatever, and we don’t use it for the Glory of God we will be held responsible for it.

If we don’t do the best we can for God we will be held responsible for it.

f) Juxtaposition God’s Sovereignty

Now just wait a minute you say. Just wait a cotton picking minute Mr. Fine and Dandy Neil Mammen. Just wait a minute,

You just seem to have a whale of a time getting up there and spouting theology and your stupid opinions at the top of your voice.

You just seem to have a whale of a time getting up there and telling me what to do and what not to do.

You just seem to have a whale of a time telling everybody how they are going to be judged if they don’t do their best.

Do you even realize that you have just totally and absolutely contradicted yourself?

Do you realize that you have, in the same breath said both that God plans every single cotton picking thing and that I am responsible for what I do!!!!

How can I help it if God has deemed that my life should be a failure?

How can I help it if God has planned that I should be a jerk my entire life?

How can I help it if God has already planned that I should be a weak feeble uncommitted Christian?

How can I help it if God has already planned that I should struggle continuously with sin?

How can I help it!

And yet you stand up there in your holier than thou manner and then tell me that it is all my responsibility anyway.

Logic smogic, you are just off your rocker. You are expecting me to accept two statements that are totally contradictory and what’s worse is that you not only claim that the Bible says it, but you expect me to believe it? And you call yourself a logical scientist. Ha!!

g) Explain the antinomy.

I do call myself a scientist. With a very strong background in Physics. Physics.

You see in Physics there is a substance that seems to have two very contradictory traits, it’s acts like a particle and yet it also acts like a wave.

We cannot understand it. We cannot comprehend it. Yet it is a fact.

So what physicists will tell you is that light is a particle and light is a wave, despite the fact that those two concepts are seemingly contradictory. But the physicist has learned to accept both these facts. He calls it an Antinomy. And he will tell you that, that is fine. But how can it be a particle and a wave at the same time?

To our finite minds, of course, the thing is inexplicable. It sounds like a contradiction, and our first reaction is to complain that it is absurd. But both are true by experimentation, thus it follows that they must be held together and not played off against each other. Light is a particle, but it is also a wave.

God is Sovereign and He has planned everything, but Man is responsible for his actions.

God is Sovereign and He has planned everything, but Man is responsible for his actions.

We cannot understand it. We cannot comprehend it. But it is true.

So what the Bible tells you is that God has everything planned and yet man is responsible for his actions, despite the fact that those two concepts are seemingly contradictory. But Paul the apostle has learned to accept both these facts. He would call it an Antinomy. And he will tell you that, that is fine. But how can God have everything planned and yet hold man is responsible for his actions?

To our finite minds, of course, the thing is inexplicable. It sounds like a contradiction, and our first reaction is to complain that it is absurd. But both are true according to the Bible, thus it follows that they must be held together and not played off against each other. God is Sovereign and He has planned everything, but Man is responsible for his actions.

I cannot understand it. I cannot comprehend it. But the more I study the Bible the more I am convinced that it is true.

How do these two things work together? It doesn’t seem to make sense? How can God plan everything and still hold man responsible for what He, God has planned? That just seems so unfair?

But we know God is just. It is just that we seem to have trouble comprehending how a just God can plan everything and then still hold us responsible. We can’t say, well the concept must be wrong, because our Bible study has shown both to be very solid Biblically founded principles.

Is 46:9 turn there. Is 46:9 Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me. 10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please. 11 From the east I summon a bird of prey; from a far-off land, a man to fulfill my purpose. What I have said, that will I bring about; what I have planned, that will I do.

Dan. 4:35 All the peoples of the earth are regarded as nothing. He does as he pleases with the powers of heaven and the peoples of the earth. No one can hold back his hand or say to him: “What have you done?”

Ps 33:10 The LORD foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples. 11 But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.

Remember last week I told you that you would wish that some of those passages weren’t in the Bible? Well, now what a number of you are doing is asking whether you really believe that God has planned everything? Aren’t you. But remember, don’t put God in your box. He is what He says He is. Not what we comprehend Him to be.

Acts 4:27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed.

Acts 4:28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen.

Of course you might claim that that verse is only referring to the death of Christ.

But how about Prov. 16:9 In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.

Prov. 21:1 The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; He directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases.

Matt. 10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father.

Matt. 10:30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.

Even a sparrow falling to the ground is planned. Even a sparrow. A single little sparrow. How much more valuable are we who He loves and created in His own image?

Of course you may say, well maybe God looked down through the tunnel of time and saw what we were about to do and then decided what was going to happen, based on what we were going to do, anyway. And if that were indeed the case then if God had foreseen that we were going to do something that He didn’t want us to do, he’d have to change how He dealt with it. But the Bible says that His plans stand fast and he never changes them.

The Bible says that God appointed and planned things to happen before we were born. And if fact it says that that was the case before we had even done anything.

Rom. 9:10 Not only that, but Rebekah’s children had one and the same father, our father Isaac.

Rom. 9:11 Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad –in order that God’s purpose in election might stand:

Rom. 9:12 not by works but by him who calls –she was told, “The older will serve the younger.”

Rom. 9:13 Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

This passage goes on to talk about an even greater issue.

Then you may ask, doesn’t the Bible tell us the reason for this? Well, that’s what we’d hope. We’d hope that it would and Paul starts to talk about this.

Skip forward to Romans 9:19.

Romans 9:19 One of you will say to me: “Then why does God still blame us? For who resists his will?”

And here we have it. We are about to find out why God holds us responsible, we are about to find out the answer to this dilemma, we are about to read on and find the solution and so we eagerly turn to the next verse and we read…..20 But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, `Why did you make me like this?'” 21 Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use?

We think we are about to get the answer and then aaaargh. Paul says this? He doesn’t answer the question? He says “don’t be stuuuupid, how dare you ask God such defiant questions.” How dare you question the Holy One.

But who is really the author of Romans? Is it Paul? Or is it the Holy Spirit? It’s the Holy Spirit, isn’t it. And so the issue here is not that Paul chose not to tell us but that……… God ……..chose not to tell us. God said, I know you are going to ask this question but I see fit to not tell you the answer, because a) You just can’t comprehend the answer or b) You have no right to know the answer. Just know that I am God, I created you for my Glory and that’s your Job, to Glorify Me.

So just go do it and don’t talk back. Well some of us may be inclined to ask, well just who does He think He is? I’ll tell you who He thinks He is? Why! He thinks He’s God. But He not only thinks He’s God, He is God. And He is Sovereign and He does have a right to tell us, as much or as little as He wants. Creatures are not entitled to register complaints about their Creator.

Let me say that again Creatures are not entitled to register complaints about their Creator.

Besides we probably just couldn’t comprehend it, even if He did tell us. We are trying to think like a Creator of Life, what do we know about such things? We are trying to think with our human sense of justice. What do we know? It’s like trying to teach sheep Physics. Ever try to teach a sheep physics? Hey sheep, Force = mass * acceleration and that yields E=mc2. Some of us would have trouble with that concept, forget about the sheep.

In fact the whole concept of the fact that man has a complete freewill and that God will never violate this free will comes from this whole problem. People say well since man is being held responsible, he must then have a complete freewill.

We cannot understand it. We cannot comprehend it yet! We may never comprehend it. But it is Biblical. But lest you think that I created all this, it is important to remember that Spurgeon, Augustine, J.I. Packer and millions of theologians since the beginning of Christianity have come invariably to the same conclusion upon reading the Word of God.

The Mystery

In the final analysis, the exact relationship between divine sovereignty and human freedom is necessarily a mystery. But remember God is just and God is sovereign.

Is 55:8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. 10 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

h) Are we Robots?

i. How do we enjoy God?

ii. How do we pray for people if God is not Sovereign? How do we pray like Paul etc prayed?

iii. Burden for the lost, burden for excellence (part of i.?).

iv. Are we Robots, that’s not the question.

So are we robots? That’s not the question to ask. The question to ask is what are we created for? What are we created for.

The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying God forever.

We are created for giving glory to God.

So then the question to ask is how do we give Glory to God? And that is a very valid question, one that we have already covered before.

We give glory to God by praising Him, by praying to Him, by supplicating ourselves to Him. And what is all that? That’s all stuff He’s told us to do. We give glory to God by obeying Him.

You see we find that the only way to find the Happiness that we crave is not to seek it in itself, that is not to seek Happiness but rather to forget oneself in the daily preoccupation of seeking God’s glory and doing his will and proving his power through the ups and downs and stresses and strains of everyday life. It is the work and glory and praising of God that we should be absorbed with. Our whole purpose of existence is that with heart and life we should worship and exalt, obey and do our best for God.

God uses men as a means for achieving His purposes., but in the last analysis nothing depends on man; everything depends, rather on the God who raises men up to do His will. The God who sent us Christians is pleased to work with us, but he can do without us just as well.

But what are all those really? All those things could fall under one category, couldn’t it. How do we know that that is how we Glorify God? Why because He told us to do it. See therefore we are Glorify God by what? By obeying Him. Obedience. We give Glory to God by obeying His orders.

What are his orders?

God is Sovereign but Man is responsible. But what is man responsible for? He is responsible for obeying God. Do you see how it links together? How do we please the Father? How do we do His Will? We obey Him. He has willed that something will happen. We obey that. We obey His will and that is what will happen. It’s not easy but you see the glimmering of a connection? His plan. His will. We obey Him, we do His will. His plan unfolds.

Of course where we fail to comprehend is that His plan would unfold anyway, wouldn’t it? I can’t comprehend it, but as long as I am certain that the Bible is God’s word. I am willing to accept it.]

Praying for people.

Are we robots? That’s not the question to ask. The question to ask is are we obeying Him, are we petitioning Him on a daily basis for the salvation of the people around us?

Are we begging Him to reveal His glory to them.

Are we begging Him to take them by their shoulders and shake them awake and reveal His face to them?

Are we begging Him to break through their veil of sin and depravity and make them see the truth?

God is Sovereign but Man is responsible. But what is man responsible for? He is responsible for obeying God.

Are we robots? That’s not the question to ask. The question to ask is are we seeking to excel in everything we do?

Are we getting on our knees everyday and begging him to mold us and use us?

Are we running the race for Him, fulfilling His desires? Or are sitting wasting our lives.

Are we robots? I don’t care if we are robots. I just want God to use me so greatly that he is magnified in every thing I do,

in every step I take

in every aspect of my life.

The greatest thing in life for me is that God would use me to glorify Himself. That he would use me to reach people

that he would use me to teach people

that he would use me to change peoples lives.

That He would use me to Glorify Himself.

Oh God just use me.

Are we robots? Oh God I wish I was sometimes, at least then I could just follow orders without having to battle my flesh,

at least then I wouldn’t be in this constant battle to obey God.

I’ve tried it my way. And you know what I found out?

My way doesn’t work. How many of you can identify with me? My way doesn’t work.

I don’t want my freewill. I’ve seen what it can yield. Don’t make me a free man, you wouldn’t like me when I am free. Because I am depraved and wicked and selfish and proud.

Ps. 53:1 The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, and their ways are vile; there is no one who does good.

Ps. 53:2 God looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God.

Ps. 53:3 Everyone has turned away, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.

On our own we can do nothing.

i) Revisit the Sovereignty of God. Does God need us to accomplish his will? I think not. He chooses to allow us to be part of the magnificent plan. E.g. the Israelites, Jonah, etc.

Our Final Point and practical application is that if we don’t obey God, His Will will still reign, but we will be passed over. Let me repeat that. If we don’t obey God, His Will will still reign, but we will be passed over.

Remember back in the Old Testament, when God sent the Israelites into war for the first time. They’d just been tromping all the way from Egypt, and here they were on the edge of the promised land. And God said, go down into Canaan and I will deliver the Canaanites into your hands.

But the people of Israel said, Oh no, they are giants. Oh, no I’m too tired, we’re too weak, we’ve been marching for 5 months, I’ve been working all day, we need a break. We can’t fight them.

The question is, was God going to deliver the Canaanites into their hands? Yes

Did God actually need the Israelites to do anything? Or could God have done it without the Israelites? Yes, of course God didn’t need the Israelites.

So then what part did the Israelites play? Nothing or something? Either way they ended up being held responsible for not obeying God. They were held responsible for chickening out. They were held responsible for not doing their best. They were held responsible for not believing in God. They were sent back into the wilderness for another 40 years.

So the question to ask is not – are we robots, but, are we obeying God.

God has said do this do and that and I will make this other thing happen? Are we to sit and determine how much of this is God’s will and how much of this is our responsibility or are we to remember that we have a responsibility and that is to obey the will of God.

Are you sitting at home watching TV instead of using the creative Gifts that God gave you?

Are you sitting at home thinking that you are relaxing for 4 mindless hours every night wasting the gifts of compassion that God gave you?

Are you going to work everyday and just returning without a thought about the people you work with? Do you pray for them? Do you believe that God is sovereign? And that if you pray that He would change their lives that He can and will? Are you spreading the word of God around in Love? Or will the blood of the damned be upon your head, like Ezekiel says?

Are you being very selfish with your time instead of getting out there and getting involved with some sort of ministry. There are Junior High kids, High School Kids, pre school kids, there’s the Prison Ministry, there’s the CityTeam ministries. What are you doing with your time?

Can God get all this work done without you? Will the work of God be stopped if you don’t pray, or if you don’t serve? If you are not in ministry? No of course not. But He will pass you over. He will send you back out into the desert for another 40 years. Now you decide. Where you want to be? Following His orders? Or reaping the consequences?

1Cor. 9:16 Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! 17 If I preach voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed to me.

God’s Will will reign. He is sovereign. Now ask yourself. Do you want to obey God or do you want God to pass you over.

God’s Will will reign. Do you want to seize your responsibility or do you want be bowled over as that promise is given to someone else who is willing to sell out for God.

God’s Will will reign. Do we want to go down into Canaan and TAKE the land or do we want to spend another 40 years in the wilderness?

God IS Sovereign. But Man is responsible.

I will run the best race I can, I will study as hard as I can, I will pray as hard as I can and I will fall at his feet and say, I can do nothing without you. Then maybe, just maybe, God will use me to glorify Himself.

Next week: The Evil Men Do.

 
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