The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? – Jeremiah 17:9
As it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one – Romans 3:10
We do not live in a world that is mostly good. We live in a broken world that is full of sin and heart-break.
I think we spend so much time thinking that darkness is less common and are surprised when we see it. I think we forget that we were never designed to deal with loss and grief and therefore need help coping. We were made in God’s image and were designed to dwell in His presence for all eternity. When sin came into the world, we were ripped away from where were meant to be.
14Then the lord God said to the serpent,
“Because you have done this, you are cursed
more than all animals, domestic and wild.
You will crawl on your belly,
groveling in the dust as long as you live.
15And I will cause hostility between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and her offspring.
He will strike#
Or bruise; also in 3:15b.
and you will strike his heel.”
16Then he said to the woman,
“I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy,
and in pain you will give birth.
And you will desire to control your husband,
but he will rule over you.#
Or And though you will have desire for your husband, / he will rule over you.
17And to the man he said,
“Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree
whose fruit I commanded you not to eat,
the ground is cursed because of you.
All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.
18It will grow thorns and thistles for you,
though you will eat of its grains.
19By the sweat of your brow
will you have food to eat
until you return to the ground
from which you were made.
For you were made from dust,
and to dust you will return.”
Paradise was taken and we now live in a cursed world. Sometimes I forget that we live in place where Satan rules. I forget that so many people do not belong to Christ and so they are subject to the darkness that seeks to crush them.
30 Then Jesus told them, “The voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31 The time for judging this world has come, when Satan, the ruler of this world, will be cast out. 32 And when I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to myself.”
I know how hard of a struggle it is for me when I am feeling pressure and am acting out in my flesh. I can remember how much harder it was before I gave my life to Jesus and decided to follow Him. I can find such comfort in knowing that my life is in God’s hands and that He has a plan for me. This does not protect me from the spiritual war that surrounds me and I am reminded of that today.
For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
As I read this verse I get a vision in my mind of the front lines of a massive war. The enemy crosses secretly onto our side and caused turmoil in the midst of those that should be uniting. The enemy looks at how we, as humanity, turn against each other and tear each other down for them. Oh what joy that must bring to those that want to steal, kill and destroy us all.
13Joyful is the person who finds wisdom,
the one who gains understanding.
14For wisdom is more profitable than silver,
and her wages are better than gold.
15Wisdom is more precious than rubies;
nothing you desire can compare with her.
16She offers you long life in her right hand,
and riches and honor in her left.
17She will guide you down delightful paths;
all her ways are satisfying.
18Wisdom is a tree of life to those who embrace her;
I would encourage you all to take a step back, take a deep breath and see the battle and this world for what they are. Don’t get caught up in fighting with one another. Fight the real fight and unite! Love on each other, carry each other, remember that the Lord will carry through this battle if you let Him lead the way.
27Do not withhold good from those who deserve it
when it’s in your power to help them.
28If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say,
“Come back tomorrow, and then I’ll help you.”
29Don’t plot harm against your neighbor,
for those who live nearby trust you.
30Don’t pick a fight without reason,
when no one has done you harm.
31Don’t envy violent people
or copy their ways.
32Such wicked people are detestable to the lord,
but he offers his friendship to the godly.
33The lord curses the house of the wicked,
but he blesses the home of the upright.
34The lord mocks the mockers
but is gracious to the humble.#
Greek version reads The Lord opposes the proud / but gives grace to the humble. Compare Jas 4:6; 1 Pet 5:5.
35The wise inherit honor,
but fools are put to shame!
Do not let the enemy continue to blind you to the needs of others. Do not allow the enemy to lead you to believe that it is your place to pass judgment. Put your pride and assumptions to the side and reach out a helping hand to ALL you come across in this life. We are follow God’s Word and to follow in His foot steps. You are not here by accident, you are not leading a meaningless life, there is purpose to who you are and where you are at this very moment.
Pause. Look. Love. Think before you act, think before you pass judgment and make assumptions about others. Pray often and pray for discernment so that you can serve others in a way that would be pleasing to God.
In Jesus’ name I pray these things.