Daily Encouragement Net
The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.

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Thursday, August 5, 2021

Front porch view
A view from our front porch.

"The Call To Behave Decently"

Message summary:  Let us “not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature” but rather let us “clothe ourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ".

Listen to this message on your audio player.

“Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature” (Romans 13:13,14).

I went on a long walk with a man who came over to have an earnest conversation about some tough issues in his life. (He gave me permission to anonymously share this.) Early in his marriage he had gotten into gambling and then porn. Thankfully he has found freedom concerning both of these issues but the trust factor in his marriage has been seriously wounded. He wants to see it healed and asked for my counsel.  He and his wife experienced the consequences of his sin; both immediate and residual.

Another man confided in us concerning his long-time battle with alcoholism. It recently came to a crisis point and now that he has received Christ as his Savior he is seeking to stay on the straight path. He is overcoming and what a joy to assist him through this. He told us quite candidly of the temptation of going to a grocery store and having to pass the state store (liquor) on the way and demonstrated to us both the temptation and also  his resolve to fully abstain.

In my observation, preaching has changed in my lifetime. I believe many who presently stand at the pulpit have much greater reservation about addressing sinful behavior than in the past.

How do you deal with matters that are legal and increasingly culturally acceptable? Is the counsel to refrain “legalistic”?  Perhaps we might offend someone or create disharmony. After all, many have found ways to justify sinful behavior. Will we be seen as narrow-minded or intolerant? Both of these attitudes are considered grave violations since open-mindedness and tolerance are seen as two of the greatest virtues of modern man!

How the pendulum has swung even in my lifetime on this issue of preaching on sin. Many my age and older will recall when sin was regularly addressed from the pulpit boldly and forthrightly, much like the prophets of old. However now there is (in my observation) far less preaching on sin and a great reluctance among many preachers to address sin specifically, particularly sins that have become popular and socially acceptable, sadly even in the church setting.

But the high calling is to preach the whole inspired counsel of God’s Word; “teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness".

The preaching of God’s Word should not be diluted or “uncomfortable” passages overlooked because of today's culture or because some may perceive the message as unloving. The loving message from the faithful ministers of the gospel is to call unbelievers to faith and repentance and to do everything possible to prevent believers from indulging in sinful behavior that leads to loss, destruction, and eternal punishment. 

It remains the Biblical call for all believers who want to follow hard after God.  We must be sober minded and behave decently.  Let us “not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature” but rather let us “clothe ourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ".

Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying man Daily prayer: Father, we desire to clothe ourselves in Christ Jesus, whose Spirit resides within our hearts. We pray that our behavior will honor You in every way as we seek to behave decently, living according to the pattern of Holy Scripture. Whether in word or deed, whatever we do we want to do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to You, our Father, through Him. Amen.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Trust and Obey"  Video   Benjamin Everson sings this beautiful classic hymn at a covered bridge in New York state. I visited this bridge just before covid hit in March 2020.  It's known as the Fox Creek Bridge. See here.

For some humor after a serious message: "You've got to be kitten me! A cat got loose on the field in the Bronx!"  Video

Audrey's display
Audrey's, a wholesale gift and home decor company is preparing for their annual open house and expect gift store owners from throughout the east to descend on their warehouse in rural Lebanon County next Monday. This is one of the displays as you enter.

The view up the road from our home
The view up the road two doors from our house. This young Amish boy works on one of the farms up the road from us and he typically passes by around dusk. Sadie and Mollie always alert us to his arrival!

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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 make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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