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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Mums at Village Farm Market
Mums at the Village Farm Market

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"Kill The Spider!"

"Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry" (Colossians 3:5).

Phil Lapp, Aunty Anne's PretzelsYesterday I attended a CBMC meeting, a Christian business group I have been a part of since moving to Lancaster County in 2001. Three other men sat at my table whom I met for the first time. We shared a little about ourselves, our families and what we do for a living. Phil Lapp, a sales manager for Auntie Anne's Pretzels, shared about his background. As his last name suggests (to locals) he has an Amish heritage but is not in that particular faith group. He shared several ministries he is involved with including the Gideons, a ministry group of professional laypersons, that distributes Bibles.

The Gideons I have met for the most part tend to be older and Phil acknowledged that was the case with his Gideon Camp. He proceeded to tell an experience he had when he joined. He has an outgoing personality and shared that in expressing a desire to provide some youthful input to a group of older men he suggested to them, "I would like to youthanize you." Of course that sounds like "euthanize" and that sure brought a laugh among the men.
Of course euthanize means "to kill (a person or animal) painlessly, especially to relieve suffering from an incurable illness."

Is there a spiritual lesson here?  Euthanize is the attitude we must have toward sin although in this form it certainly may not be painless and we must heed the apostle Paul's forthright words in our daily text: "Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry" (Colossians 3:5).

I consider today a friend who "played around" with a certain matter in his life. Initially it seemed harmless with few consequences. (Satan's devices are always portrayed as "harmless" and he's a master at masquerading or completely obscuring the consequences). But in time the matter grew until it became more and more gripping and eventually it captivated him and became a very destructive force in his life.

I enjoy this illustration I read in an online commentary: "Have you heard about the man whose bad habit was hindering his fellowship with God and hurting his Christian testimony? He said he prayed that God would forgive him for his addiction—but he didn't stop!

He is like the man who often went forward at the end of church services to kneel and pray, 'Lord, take the cobwebs out of my life.' One Sunday morning his pastor, tired of hearing the same old prayer, knelt beside him and cried out, 'Lord, kill the spider!'

Yes, sometimes it takes radical action to break a sinful habit. We need to do more than ask God for cleansing each time we succumb to temptation. We must take whatever steps are needed to get the cobwebs out of our life. We must confess our sin and determine to be done with it. Then we must feed our mind with God's Word and do all we can to stay away from the people and places that tempt us to sin. That's what Christ meant when He said, 'If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out' (Matthew 5:29). Kill the spider and you'll get rid of the cobwebs. Remember that admitting sin is no substitute for quitting sin."

We do well to seriously heed the words of the Holy Scripture. What unwholesome or harmful matter(s) are you playing around with?  I appeal to you, take decisive action and put it to death. Kill the spider!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, I ask you to help me to be serious about dealing with everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles me. Help me not to play around with these matters that  hold me captive and bring destruction. Put to death any desire or behavior which resurrects my earthly nature. I want to be separated from that which is evil and wholly consecrated to You. It is in Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Josh Enk, Sight and Sound Theater
Our speaker at CBMC yesterday was Josh Enck who is the CCO and Co-President of Sight and Sound Theaters. He shared his testimony and how the Lord was working through the Sight and Sound theaters. These shows give a clear gospel presentation. They have been presenting Bible character-based dramas since 1977 and this has been the best year yet for attendance with 1.3 million attending shows here in Lancaster County and in Branson Missouri so far this year. He shared about a new show being planned for 2014 on a Bible character Sight and Sound has so far never dealt with.

Apples at Village Farm Market
Apples at the Village Farm Market

Today's Suggested Music
and Supplemental Resources

"To Obey Is Better Than Sacrifice"  Video  Keith Green

"Create in Me a Clean Heart"  Video  Keith Green

"He Rescued Me"  Video  Red Mountain Church

"All I Have Is Christ"  Video  Sovereign Grace Music


The Gideons

a message to Stephen & Brooksyne

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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