An “A” for effort but nothing still equals zero .

“PAUL, CALLED to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the WILL of God, and Sosthenes our brother.

Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, CALLED to be saints with ALL that are in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord, both their’s and our’s. 

Grace be unto you, and peace from the God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ; 

That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance (speaking) and in all knowledge; 

Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you. 

So you come behind (fall short) in no gift; waiting for the coming (revelation) of our Lord Jesus Christ. 

Who should also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

God is faithful, by whom ye were CALLED into the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  

Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,that ye all speak the same, (have a uniform testimony), and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 

For it hath been declared unto me of you, my brethren, by them which are of the house of Chloe, that are contentions (quarrels) among you.

Now I this I say, that every one of you saith, I am of Paul; and of Apollos; and of Cephas; and I of Christ.

Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were you baptized into the name of Paul?

I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus, and Gaius;

Lest (unless) any should say that I had baptized in mine own name.

And I baptized also the household of Stephanas; besides (other than them), I know not whether I baptized any other. 

For Christ sent me NOT to baptize, but to preach the gospel, NOT with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect (considered void and meaningless). 

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

For it is written, I WILL DESTROY THE WISDOM OF THE WISE, AND WILL BRING TO NOTHING THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE PRUDENT.

Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath God not made foolish the wisdom of this world? 

For after the wisdom of God the world by wisdom KNEW NOT God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching  (the message preached) to SAVE them that believe.

For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

But we preach Jesus crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; 

BUT unto them that are CALLED, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.  

Because the foolishness of God IS wiser than men; and the weakness of God IS stronger than men.

For ye see (consider) YOUR CALLING, brethren, how that NOT many wise men after the flesh, NOT many mighty, NOT many noble are called.” 1 Corinthians 1:1-26 

The main thought running through this passage is that we ARE called.

I love how Paul pointed out all the “in fighting”, all the contentions, and strife.

Like how so many of us in the “church” NOT one church but as a world-wide universal belief in Christ, have so many different thoughts and arguments about those beliefs… who “should be allowed” to serve what office, and what’s worse who’s “going to hell” or not for not conforming to “traditional” roles, or certain denominations beleifs, but he is teaching us that this is wrong and that we are to belive this… Jesus Christ, sinless son of God, born of a virgin, crucified, dead, and resurrected. Sharing THAT testimony and winning others to Christ through HIM being lifted up, NOT by our “wisdom” and ALL the other arguments are just that, arguments and that has no place and will never have a place in the Kingdom of God.

We are also being taught here to always bear in mind the fact that Jesus saves us, Jesus sanctified us, and He confirms, even keeping us in the confirmation that we are His, until the very end, until we are welcomed into our eternal reward.

But what do we do with this confirmation?

What do we do when we fail to share that testimony of just what the cross has meant to us?

What happens when God has healed us, rescued us, and delivered us and yet we don’t want to share that for fear of looking “foolish” to the world?

We become much like the ten lepers, whom after Jesus had healed ALL of them, only one returned to give God glory. 

When we choose to fear the world or we choose to just “sit” on our gift or calling and make no effort whatsoever to nurture those gifts or pursue that calling and when we fail to help others on the path that God has chosen for them, we are doing NOTHING. And when our “service” to the Lord only consists of what is convenient or comfortable to us and for us, again we are doing NOTHING.

And when church becomes a place we can go IF we need something from God or do not have anything “better to do”, then it the worst kind of NOTHING. When we just don’t feel like serving God, { NOT due to illness, but meaning attitude of being apathetic, just don’t have time, just don’t care} well, Jesus did NOT FEEL LIKE BEING TORTURED AND MURDERED, but He loved us enough to do it.

And ONCE we have known the Lord, we no longer belong to ourselves, we have been, as the Bible tells us, “bought with a price” and that price was Jesus’ life.

And then we turn and “live out” the verse in which the Lord tells us that we have “sold ourselves” for nothing. And by doing NOTHING we are selling ourselves, our salvation, AND those whom we were to minister to and those to whom the gift God had given us should have impacted.

God sent that preaching, that calling, that gift to those who do believe, we know the world will NOT receive it, it is not sent to them and he already told us they will find it foolish.

We can have that friendship with the world, even after God has us warned of this with these words from James 4:4:..“Know ye not (do you not know?) that the friendship of (with) the world IS enmity with God? whosoever therefore will (wants to be)be a friend with the world IS THE ENEMY OF GOD.”  

Again, the “world” meaning putting a higher value on those things of sin and worldly pleasure, and putting the thoughts, opinions of others at a higher value than those of God.

This is a huge problem today with the refusal to speak AGAINST pagan beliefs and sin for fear of offending others. If you know God to be God than you KNOW that He is also the ONLY truth and the ONLY way to salvation.

And the argument of “others having their own beliefs”, but when you know those beliefs are completely contrary to the word of God and say NOTHING you are letting that person be falsely lead and by saying NOTHING you are letting them have  a false sense of security in those false beliefs.

The FIRST ploy the serpent played on Eve was LETTING her BELIEVE that he was her friend and that he was telling the truth, when we LET other BELIVE that we WOULD tell them the truth concerning the way to salvation but we fail to do so, then we become as much a danger to their soul and eternal life as the devil himself.

And all due to our choice of choosing NOTHING.

That does not mean you can not speak to someone or be kind to people but when those friendships and FEAR of ridicule prevents you from sharing the cross and the testimony of God, then that friendship is now of a higher value than your own salvation.

So we all have that choice, DO THE WILL OF GOD, as we are told here:

James 1:22: “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your ownselves.” 

There is that deception again, it is very easy to deceive ourselves into choosing what we think or what we feel, but you know, when Jesus taught the disciples to pray the Lord’s prayer, a key to that prayer is ‘Thy will be DONE in earth,a s it is in heaven.” and that earth can also mean US, Adam was created from the dirt of the earth, and earth is this realm but WE are also that earth that must allow HIS will in us.

When all is said, and all is done, rewards given and totals tallied we can be assured of getting straight “A”‘s for effort and we can also be assured that no matter how it is calculated “zero” will always equal absolutely NOTHING.

I, for one want those “A”‘s! I changed the name a little and am trying a little something “different” as far as ministry goes, because I was challenged to the thought of what did I have? What could I do with whatever it is that God has allowed me to have to spread the Gospel of Christ, and fail or flop, if we give all we have and try our best, that is all he wants of us BUT we all have to try to we all need to start taking God and His word, His commands, His mercy, and His love and doing something with it.

Σαλπιζω Φλογιζω NBJ2018

Related: go-for-the-gold-but-please-hold-the-jade

To shun the Son

"GO FOR THE GOLD BUT PLEASE, HOLD THE JADE"

Ah, Jaded. What a lovely word, normally a beautiful stone used to adorn beautiful things. but in the right context, not quite so lovely on us.
We are to press toward the mark, to earn the crown of righteousness to one day lay at the Master’s feet, beautiful I am sure, pure gold just like His word and His truth that refines our souls purer than the purest of all gold.
But if that crown happens to be embellished with a little jade, what’s it going to hurt?
Well what was to be made of precious metal will now consist of hardened stone.
What should have shone with heavenly brilliance and reflected the Fathers light will now dull and now have an odd color and an indifferent feel.
That crown will be inferior and will tarnish and once that happens it will never be presentable before a King.
All that work, all that heartache, tears,and sacrifices, whatever had been involved in winning that crown will now be useless and disallowed and burned with the stubble in the fire in which all things must be burned away in that purification process of the soul.
So what causes us to go from that ecstatically exuberant joy that we are bathed in the day of our salvation to the “j” word over the course of that salvation?
I have pondered it, in myself and in others and I have come up with a couple of reasons.
In my circle our favorite subject is “Christendom of Yore” I know that they had problems, I know they had battles, and that females were to sit quietly and express no thoughts or opinions, to which I am thankful to be in the present day or otherwise my heart would explode!


Jaded: Deadened, injured, weary, tired, apathetic, blunted, blasé (indifferent or unimpressed) dispassionate, half hearted. Remember apathetic.
So how does our beautiful golden crowns become inlaid with flat, dulled jade?


#1 Fatigued, battle weary
We are in or nearing, in my belief, “the wearing out of the Saints” it seems no matter who they are, rich, poor, married or single that Christians are being constantly bombarded with a steady stream of attacks from the enemy unlike ever before.
Usually people would face one battle at a time but now it seems many fight multi battles on different levels and I am reminded of Nehemiah 4:17: “They which builded on the wall, and they which bare burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work (working) AND WITH THE OTHER HAND HELD A WEAPON.”
Trying to “work” on our building for the Lord, and whatever he has called us to do being carefully on guard against attacks at all time, never a moment to rest, never a moment of ease by not having to look over our shoulders because this work must be done and many want it to cease.


#2 Blasé and unimpressed 
 “Heard it, believed it, didn’t happen, not buying it again”
I want to be very, very careful how I say this, but one huge problem running amok over the last few years is “Believe it, receive it, Doubt it and do without it” I am ALL for faith, and I know what scripture teaches on believing for what we do not see, but miracles and healings are in a special, special league all their own.
Miracles are instantaneous and the moment that you are healed you know and there has been such a free for all of proclaiming healings over people and “feeling” like the “Lord is saying” that some teach that all you have to do is proclaim it and “believe” (which is actually different from faith, belief is in your heart and faith is knowing come what may He is God and He is sovereign) and when people are hurting, love ones are dying and they are told this and someone actually proclaims that they are healed then they die and the bewildered family are told they just did not have the faith or that they received the ultimate healing.
And no one admits to maybe having misspoke or trying to pray “in faith”, often people want to reach out to others but in this area it is best to pray the Lord’s prayer, “deliver them”.
( I do understand that Paul perceived that the man had faith to be healed BUT Paul was filled with the HOLY GHOST, he KNEW when the anointing came that GOD would grant his request FOR THE GLORY TO THE LORD, not so he could win preacher of the year!) 
BUT NO,NO,NO, NO! When they have believed based one what they were told by Christians that they trusted and if it DOES NOT happen, this leads to apathy and causing them to lose more faith than what would have been lost if they had known the truth, this has caused many to leave church completely.
But IF GOD truly says it, it will come to pass.
#3 Apathetic and Blunted:
“They don’t care, why should I?”
The beginning of the journey all fired up, feeding off on another’s anointing, iron sharpening iron, the spirit bearing witness.
Now that is good, but when things start to change and the one you once loved to listen starts coming against you for whatever reason, what was once a beautiful flow will become a dangerous hindrance in the spirit world.
Two swordsmen fighting each other with equally dangerous weapons and that unspoken carnage will spill over onto the entire congregation.
And the swordsmen are prime to have the Lord to take both their swords. 
And that once sharp iron will become dull and blunt rendering it absolutely ineffective against the enemy.
That apathetic “blah, blah, blah” attitude will breed into so much more than a covering of jade.
When this hit me, I knew the meaning of jaded, I wanted a clearer list and broader understanding and as I kept defining meanings, two fascinating words appeared,
stemming FROM the jaded definition of apathetic, LUKEWARM and LAODICEAN.
Yeah, and we all know what that means, so all these things left unchecked will lead to being lukewarm and we also know that is the condition in which Jesus said he will spue us out.
So how do we clean that jade off before it takes hold of the gold?
Renewing, renewing and renewing  our minds, “let this mind which is in Christ Jesus be in you also” renewing our minds through scripture back into the word of God. Reminding ourselves repeatedly of every single promise that we have been given.
As Nehemiah prayed that God would “strengthen the work” of his hands so must we.
He will never allow us to break, when we are weary, it is His right hand that holds us up, when our heads are bowed in discouragement it is His left hand that lifts our face.
When we desperately, desperately need a word to hang onto or a glimmer of hope, remember “What time that I am afraid I will trust in thee” and that He will be with us “even unto the end of the world” and sometimes that can be when we feel that our world is ending, but He will never leave us.
Remember our first love and “remember thy love more than wine” and know that even though we don’t always feel it, the only approval we need is His.
 No one can zap us into heaven and no one can deny us heaven if we don’t let them, no matter who has hurt us it is still up to us to “work out” our “own salvation” if that means finding another church, then do it because God is not the author of confusion.
Forgive those that have hurt you, just let it go and go on and don’t even try to understand it, God doesn’t want us to waste time over analyzing and ever analyzing what went wrong yesterday, because He already knows what tomorrow will bring.
I have found in my own life that every painful path that I have had to walk down led me to a more beautiful place and at the end of that road I may not have liked the circumstances that lead me there but I have always been thankful for the journey because of the  blessings in that valley that He has given me and I know that I would never received that on a mountain top.
Sharpen that sword and  get that crown polished because no matter how tired, how weary, lethargic or depressed you may feel, you’ve been furnace fired to be pure gold and that jade is just never gonna look good on you!
Φλογίζω / NBJ/ All rights reserved 2015