“When Doing Right Is Wrong”

Posted: September 6, 2017 in Christian Life, Dispensations, Salvation, Spiritual Gifts

When is it wrong to do what is right? This may seem like a foolish question and yet there are some times when this is true. “There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12). After Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and acted independently of God, just as Lucifer did (Isaiah 14:13, 14; Ezekiel 28:12-19), they were immediately separated from fellowship with God and began to die physically (Genesis 2:17; 3:1-7; 5:5). By the way, are you doing the right things independently of God? If you’re a Christian, you should always include God in your plans (James 4:13-17). You should say, “God willing, I will do ….” Wise King Solomon wrote, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And he shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5, 6).

Conscience. For about the next 1,600 years, after the fall of Adam and Eve, they and their descendants lived according to their depraved and distorted consciences. (See our Dispensations Chart.) They thought they knew the difference between good and evil, but in the eyes of God “the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and…every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). Why? The heart [of mankind] is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: Who can know it” (Jeremiah 17:9). Furthermore, “There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who understands; There is none who seeks after God” (See Romans 3:10-23). This means all mankind is totally depraved. No, we haven’t been as bad as we could be, but we are as bad off as we can be unless we have the righteousness of Christ put to His account.

Imputation. This takes place when we believe on Christ alone to save us (John 16:10; Romans 4:1-8). It is as though God is saying, “You acted right by dying for your sins in the person of your Substitute, the Lord Jesus Christ.” (See Galatians 2:20; Romans 6:23). Unsaved people don’t have a spark of divinity in them that just needs to be fanned so they can become better on their own without God’s help.

Flood. Since the people before the universal flood were so wicked, (not much different from people today – See 1 Timothy 4:1-3; 2 Timothy 3:1-7), God found it necessary to destroy all mankind off the face of the earth. Noah and his three sons and their wives were exempt from this destruction, because he (Noah) was a just man who walked with God (Genesis 6:9). From these three families God repopulated the earth. We all are descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japheth (Genesis 6:10). The ethnic groups began to take shape after the flood when God came down as the rebels, led by Nimrod (Genesis 10:8, 9), were building the Tower of Babel. He confused their language, so that they didn’t understand one another’s speech (Genesis 11:7).

Sin Nature. In spite of his being a righteous man, Noah and his sons retained their sin natures (dispositions) and passed them down to all mankind (Genesis 9:20-29; Psalm 51:5). Contrary to what some “preachers” are telling people, we don’t lose this sinful nature (disposition) when we are saved and “born again from above” (John 3:3-6; 1 John 1:8; Romans 7:15-25). We will have it until we die physically or the Rapture takes place (Romans 8:23; 1 Peter 1:9). An unsaved person who dies physically in unbelief will carry his sin nature into the next life as he suffers forever in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:30, 41, 46). He will still have all the vile and sinful cravings he had on earth, but he won’t ever be able to have them satisfied (Mark 9:44, 46, 48).

Potential. As Christians, we still have the potential to engage in all the “works of the flesh” (Galatians 5:19-21; See 1 Corinthians 3:1-4; 5:1-13; James 4:1-6). But Christians can live victoriously over the lusts (strong desires) that come from our sin nature if/when we “walk by means of the Holy Spirit” (Galatians 5:16-25). A Christian doesn’t have to keep on giving in to the lusts (strong desires) that come from his/her sin nature, the devil, or the present world system. Each of these three spiritual enemies must be overcome by using three separate tactics. Do you know how to do this?

Divine Nature. All true believers in the Christ of the Scriptures (not the cults) become partakers of the divine nature at the time of their salvation and are enabled to do things that please God (2 Peter 1:4; 2 Corinthians 5:9; Philippians 2:13; 4:13). There is nothing an unsaved person can do to earn his/her salvation or favor with God (Romans 8:8). Salvation is a gracious gift from God that must be received by faith (Ephesians 2:8, 9; Titus 3:5). Have you received it yet? Do other people know about your new life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17)? Are you doing God’s work God’s way and according to the rules that He has established (2 Timothy 2:5)? In spite of what many religions believe and practice, “The end doesn’t justify the means.” So why do some people say, “Let us do evil that good may come”? Are you serving God and others with gladness, joy, and with “agape” love or for some other selfish reason (Galatians 5:13, 22; 1 Corinthians 13; 4:5; Psalm 100:2)? God, who is omniscient, knows all about you (John 2:24, 25; See Psalm 10:11).  We will all stand before Jesus, the righteous Judge, someday (John 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:8).  What will His assessment of your works be (1 Corinthians 3:11-15; Revelation 20:11-15)?

Spiritual Gifts. Do you know what your spiritual gift is and are you using it for the glory of God and the good of others (1 Peter 4:10; Romans 12; 1 Corinthians 12-14)? What are you doing that could lead other people to think or believe that you might be a true Christian (James 1:22; 2:18-20)? Are you merely a “professing Christian” or one who “possesses eternal life” right now (1 John 5:12, 13)? Are you living the “abundant life” (John 10:10; See Ephesians 1:3)? This is not “the health, wealthy, and happiness life” that some false teachers are peddling.

Evidence. Abraham was saved when he believed that God would give him a son by his wife Sarah when both of them were very old. That son was Isaac, not Ishmael by Hagar the Egyptian woman (Genesis 16). God told Abraham that he would have numerous descendants (Genesis 15:6). But did you know that other people weren’t aware of the fact that he was a true believer in God for about 20 years or more when he offered up his son Isaac on an altar (See Genesis 22:12; James 2:21)? Are you a “secret Christian” or a “convenient, carnal Christian”? Are you ashamed of Jesus and what He did for you? When was the last time you shared the clear Gospel with someone? “He died on the cross for your sins…and then rose again bodily on the third day” (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4; Luke 24:33-43)? This fact should help you want to resist temptations so you can earn the crown of life (James 1:12).

Beautiful Feet. If you aren’t ashamed of the Gospel of Christ (Romans 1:16, 17) and want to have beautiful feet in God’s sight, then share it with unsaved people so they can have Someone in whom they can believe and be saved (Romans 10:15). If you’ve been saved, have you been baptized by immersion to picture your death, burial, and resurrection with Christ (Matthew 28:19, 20; Galatians 2:20)? Have you presented your body to God as a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1, 2)? It’s the reasonable thing to do. Are you a F.A.T.F.R.E.E. Christian (Faithful, Available, Teachable, Flexible, Resilient, Evangelistic, and Enthusiastic)? If not, what needs to change?

Confession. The unsaved person isn’t required to remember every sin he/she has ever committed and confess them all to God before he/she can be saved. By the way, the only unforgivable sin today is unbelief in Christ (John 16:9; 3:16, 18, 36). The Scriptures don’t talk about“mortal sins” and “venial sins.” When a person believes on the Lord Jesus Christ through the message of the Gospel (Acts 16:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3, 4), he/she receives judicial forgiveness from God (Ephesians 1:7; Romans 8:1). Family forgiveness comes when a Christian repents (changes his/her mind about the sin he/she committed – 2 Corinthians 7:9), and then confesses it directly to God the Father (not to some human priest) by being specific about it and naming it to God (1 John 1:9). God doesn’t forgive us when we generalize or excuse our sins by calling them by some other name. (Example: “God, forgive me of all my sins.”) When you lie, tell God that you lied. If you committed fornication or adultery, or got drunk, you tell Him what you did. Sins, especially unconfessed sins, in the life of a Christian, can lead to a premature, physical death (James 5:19, 20; 1 John 5:16). “But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons” (Hebrews 12:8). But once saved, Christians are called upon to confess their sins to God the Father when the Holy Spirit brings them to our mind (1 John 1:9; See James 5:16). “Sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). “It is refusing to recognize any restrictions or restraints from God and act as though he had none.” – Dr. H. L. Schafer

Action Steps. “What does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8). These words were addressed to the Jews who were living in rebellion against God and violating their conditional covenant (agreement) with Him (Exodus 19:8; 20:1-17; Deuteronomy 28). They were to do what was right in God’s sight, not what was right in their own eyes and what they thought was right (See Judges 21:25). God made man and He makes the rules for us to follow and obey. (See our Dispensations Chart.) Are you defiant toward God? The Jews were to be merciful toward those who were suffering, and to walk humbly before God. He has been merciful and long suffering toward mankind (2 Peter 3:9). How have you responded to God?

Conclusion. Are you doing the right things independently of God? Are you living by your own rules or according to God’s rules? Are you doing the right things with wrong motives? Remember, “There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12). Make sure that you’re truly saved and doing what you do for God’s glory and the good of others (1 Corinthians 10:31; Galatians 6:10).

Clear Gospel:  http://www.cleargospel.org/wp-content/uploads/English-Display-Pkg-2014.pdf

Dispensations Chart: http://kelseypeach.com/Kelsey.8.pdf

Spiritual Gifts: http://kelseypeach.com/bible_basics.htm

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