So get rid of all the filth and evil in your lives, and humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls.
James 1:21 (NLT)
Note from Kip…
This is the life we are called to. Casting away those things that are impure and corrupt and seeking out that which is absent of evil and the filth of the world. Embracing the words of God that are implanted in our hearts and allowing those words to guide our days and the pathways on which our feet travel.
It sounds simple enough doesn’t it? Then why is that that we find it so hard to pursue such an idyllic goal? I’ll go out on a limb here and say that its not because we are driven to a different road. I think this is a matter of trust and our choices.
Consider the latter part of this passage. The call to accept the word God has planted in our hearts. His Word has power unimaginable. Undoubtedly the most untapped resource ever. We believers, tend to believe it, because that is what a believer does. But this is telling us to go beyond just belief. It calls us to entrust the power within God’s Word to move us into the path of salvation.
Furthermore, it is the most formidable power in our grasp. Because we simply do not place our faith and trust it it, we loose out on the rest of this wonderful imagery.
Instead, we find that distractions lure us to focus on those things that are not from the heart of God. No one ever said that evil and filth doesn’t have an attraction. The evil one will dress up this package and make it look so very appealing to us. But when we allow those things into our lives we find consistently that they are consumed by the fire and we are left with the ash and corrosion of the aftermath. At the same time we are further from the path and at times finding it difficult to know what direction it was that we came from so as to get back to it.
There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.
Proverbs 14:12 (HCSB)
Yes, there is a way that appears to be fun, exciting, just exactly what we want and desire. But that’s not the direction those words in our heart would guide us to. They lead only to death.
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
John 14:6 (HCSB )
Jesus doesn’t mask the key to this. He is The Way. He is The Truth. He is The Life. Our journey analogy here follows along because he states ‘No one comes’, so we are in fact traveling along a path. And it is the path that leads through Jesus that leads to the Father. To our ultimate destination if we truly are believers and have vested our faith and hope in Christ.
The Words in Our Heart
This very well could offend some, but it is the truth.
The reality of this is that we don’t truly believe in the truth. We’ve chosen to believe a lie. We aren’t truly discipled of Jesus when we don’t do what he tells us to do. We can’t be trusting in His words when we read them put them in our being and walk away to do that which is counter to His calling for us.
Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28:18-20 (HCSB)
I know this because if we really were doing what He says here our lives would be changed. We would become focused on building up each other. We would obey and seek to make disciples of every man, woman and child. We would have taken that leap from believing to following. We would be disciples of Christ Jesus and being such we would allow nothing to stand in our way of doing His will, His bidding, and to emulate Him in every way we possibly can.
It’s simply not enough to just believe. We must commit to believing in the change that must take place in us to that we can change the hearts and souls around us.
Jesus didn’t tell us this just to have something to say in this encounter. These aren’t pretty words that He implants in us just before for He ascends in to Heaven.
He states, “I have been given ALL Authority!” If He was given all authority then why didn’t He just do this Himself? He had the power right?
Yes He did have the power at that point and could have accomplished His will in the blink of an eye. He instead said this and then departed from them. As He did so, He implanted the Holy Spirit in us, so that we might have the power to do exactly what He had just commanded us to do.
Commanded, not suggested. Not when you get around to it. Wasn’t talking to the preachers and evangelists. He was talking to His discipled. He was speaking to those who follow Him. He was speaking to you and I!
If you are not prepared, then it is time that you do prepare. If you’ve been unwilling, then now is when you surrender your will to His. He has commanded us to go and do this. Each and every follower of His. Because that is what a disciple of Christ does.