“To The Wise, Mighty, And Rich”

Posted: August 4, 2015 in Christian Life, Government, Japan

While growing up as a missionary kid in Japan after World War II, my father used to teach us Bible verses and songs in English and Japanese. Then on Sunday afternoons we used to go to the Shibuya train station to hold street meetings. We recited these verses and sang songs in English and Japanese to gather a crowd so my father could preach to them and pass out Gospel literature. We used to stand on the hood of a converted military Jeep so we could be seen and heard with a loud speaker system. It was here that Mitsuo Fuchida [1], the man who led the attack on Pearl Harbor, received a tract and became a professing Christian.

B.T.W. The plaza at Shibuya station [2] is one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in the world today. Our middle son, Bill lives not far from there. On several occasions I have taken our children there to pass out Gospel tracts to the Japanese people. This is where the statue of the famous dog Hatchiko [3] is. Some of you probably have seen the American version of this sentimental movie, “Hatchi: A Dog’s Tale” [4].

Verses. Among the many verses that we memorized as children (in English) were Jeremiah 9:23, 24. Thus says the Lord: ‘Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Let not the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight,’ says the Lord.” Knowing God personally and telling others about Him and what He has done for us human beings is one way to glorify Him (1 Corinthians 10:31).

The Wise. Wisdom involves our going from the theoretical to the practical. It doesn’t do much good for us to have mere knowledge and facts. We need to be doers of [God’s] word, and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves” (James 1:22). If any [believer] lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5). There is also wisdom that is earthly, sensual, and demonic (James 3:15). Beware lest anyone cheat you [as a Christian] through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ” (Colossians 2:8). “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy” (James 3:17). There are doctrines (teachings) in the Bible that are to be believed while there are other doctrines that are to be believed and practiced (Titus 1:9; 2 Timothy 2:15; 3:16, 17). Do you know the difference between the two? (Ask about our FREE “Dispensational Chart” to help you make these distinctions and better decisions in life.)

The Mighty. There are some very powerful people on earth who rule over the lives of billions of other people. Some of them rule from behind the scenes and are known as the “Shadow Governments” [4]. Do you know who are behind these wicked human beings (Daniel 10:20; Ephesians 6:12; 1 Peter 5:8)? Don’t fret. Why? “the Most High [God] rules in the kingdom of men, [and] gives it to whomever He will, And sets over it the lowest of men” (Daniel 4:17; See Acts 17:26). “[God] removes kings and raises up kings” (Daniel 2:21). “For exaltation comes neither from the east nor from the west nor from the south. But God is the Judge: He puts down one, and exalts another” (Psalm 75:6, 7). Still feeling oppressed? “The king’s [ruler’s] heart is in the hand of the LORD, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes” (Proverbs 21:1). “For who [successfully] has resisted His will” (Romans 9:19; See Psalm 2)? What should Christians do with reference to those who are in authority over us? “Therefore I [the Apostle Paul] exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions [for or against], and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence…[God] desires that all men be saved [and] come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:1-4). Are you in a position of authority over other people (Ephesians 6:1-4-9)? Keep in mind your accountability to God (Matthew 12:36; Romans 14:12; Hebrews 9:27; 13:17; 1 Peter 4:5). Consider the teacher’s or parent’s responsibility (James 3:1).

The Rich. This is a relative thing. We, who live in the United States, are far richer than many other people in the world. The Apostle Paul wrote these words to Timothy, “Command those who are rich in the present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17). The very poor Christians living in Macedonia took up a collection for the poorer Christians living in Jerusalem (2 Corinthians 8:1-6). This act of love bonded the Jewish Christians and the Gentile Christians together so that there is only one true Church, the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 10:32; 12:12, 13; Galatians 3:28). We don’t believe that it is the government’s job to rob the rich through unjust taxation and give it to the poorer people (See Romans 13:7; 1 Timothy 5:8). God’s Word speaks about those who can work but who won’t work (2 Thessalonians 3:6-15). Socialism or communism cannot work as long as man has a sin nature (Psalm 51:5). The Christian doesn’t get rid of it when he/she gets saved (1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25; 2 Peter 1:4) [5]. The unsaved person who ends up in the lake of fire will have his sin nature forever but those cravings will never be gratified (Mark 9:44, 46, 48; Matthew 25:41, 46; Revelation 22:11). Sharing our material things with others, as we are being led by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:14), displays our love for God and His children (John 13:34, 35; Galatians 6:10; 1 John 3:16, 17). To the maturing Christians the Apostle John wrote, “[Stop loving] the world [system] or the things of the world. If anyone loves the world, the love [for] the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life (i.e. the vain glory of ownership) is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:15-17; See 2 Peter 3:11). As Christians, we must use the world system, but we are not to abuse it by making it the most important priority in our lives (1 Corinthians 7:31). What comes between you and God and His children? “Little children, keep yourselves from idols” (1 John 5:21). Jesus said, “For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required” (Luke 12:48). In what ways are you using your time, talents, and treasures for God’s glory and the good of others?

Know/Believe. You may know and give mental assent to the facts of the Gospel that “Christ died for your sins…and rose again bodily on the third day from the dead” (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). But not until you transfer your faith from yourself and your good works over to Christ alone are you truly saved (Acts 16:31; Ephesians 2:8, 9). Are you “believing in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:2)? Do you have assurance of your salvation and that you will go to heaven as soon as you die? If not, contact us at 805-238-3549 or visit our website at www.kelseypeach.com where we have “God’s Simple Plan Of Salvation” in 24 languages.

Links:

[1] Mitsuo Fuchida: http://www.biblebelievers.com/fuchida1.html

[2] Shibuya Hachiko Plaza: http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=image%20shibuya%20pedestrial%20crossing&qs=n&form=QBIR&pq=image%20shibuya%20pedestrial%20crossing&sc=0-14&sp=-1&sk=

[3] Hatchiko, The Dog: http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=Hachi+Dog+Statue&FORM=RESTAB

[4] Shadow Government: https://kelseypeach.wordpress.com/about/the-nefarious-shadow-government/

[5] Sin Nature: http://www.middletownbiblechurch.org/doctrine/1natjm00.htm

 

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