I heard one preacher repeatedly tell his congregation how the Word of God says we are not supposed to wrangle over words. I appreciate the effort he took to teach us that.
When people wrangle over words they are apt to make a lot of mountains out of molehills and some times they could end up bringing confusion and chaos into a situation because of the way they continue to fight about words.
Another pastor or two told their congregation that God never punishes his people. WHAT? Where is that found in the Bible? That’s not in the Bible. There are many ways that God has shown that punishment will come upon people. One of those pastors said something about how God only chastises his people, he won’t punish them. I say, “Come on now, chastisement = punishment. Someone was wrangling over words.” The Strong’s Concordance lets us see that punishment and chastisement mean the same thing. A thesaurus will say that chastisement and punishment are words with similar meanings. Now why did someone have to add confusion to other people’s lives by saying that God won’t punish his own people?
ONE EXAMPLE: Strong’s Concordance
Original Word: κόλασις, εως, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Phonetic Spelling: (kol’-as-is)
Short Definition: chastisement, punishment
Definition: chastisement, punishment, torment, perhaps with the idea of deprivation.
I believe that the devil is the author of confusion and chaos. If the enemy can get people to believe anything other than the truth he is keeping them from knowing the truth. The enemy also looks for ways to cause God’s people to argue over little things. We also know the enemy does not want people of God to recall that God is a just God.
The Bible tells us that it rains on the just and the unjust. God does not use one set of rules for one person and ignore those same rules when he deals with another person. God does look at the heart of each person and he knows why people do the things they do. God judges each situation in perfect ways.
I heard another man tell me that he does not fear God because God doesn’t want to be feared. I thought about what he said then I wondered how this man forgot that God’s Word says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. I did know this man pretty well and I realized he did not respect the Lord. He was one of the many people who said he cared about the things of God but he didn’t show God respect by following the Lord’s way of handling things in his life.
I believe there is a reverential fear of the Lord that God expects his people to give to him. If you love him you will respect him. It’s really simple. It makes perfectly good sense to me to tell people that God wants us to obey him. LOVE, OBEDIENCE, RESPECT, & FEAR given to God is a good thing. Those who love the Lord hate evil. Obedience to God brings blessings. Respecting God means you put God first. Fearing God means you realize how big God is. God is big enough to hear and answer every prayer prayed according to His will. God is big enough to control the waves of the sea and big enough to help a boy slay a giant. If a person doesn’t fear God they are not accepting the fact that God is big and powerful.
If you walk into a courtroom and you see the judge you should be prepared to show him/her respect. The judge in the courtroom calls all the shots. He can make you happy or bring you to the point of tears. God has a courtroom that’s bigger than any court found on earth. People, It’s time to recall that God is a big God.
It’s a good thing to show God fear and reverence. God is worthy of our praise and adoration. The type of fear God wants us to have for him is a healthy fear. I don’t believe he wants us to believe he is a dominating controlling person that waits to pounce on us with severe punishment and judgment. ← That just isn’t true. God is our loving Heavenly Father and he wants to revere him and trust him that he will cause all things to work together for good. He also wants to protect us from the awful ways of the enemy. God wants people to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Reading God’s Word provides us with the right answers about what will happen to people who do not revere him. God loves his people very much. You can read many stories in the Bible that prove that God warns people. I believe God sends forth warnings because he loves us. He tells us in the book of Proverbs how a person could end up eating the bitter fruit of having their own way. I have always felt that is a loving warning from our Heavenly Father. He loves us too much to keep us in the dark. Anyone that lives in darkness can come out into the light if they follow Jesus.
It is the enemy who comes to steal, kill, and to destroy us. The enemy wants us to live with the wrong kind of fear in our lives. The devil wants to distort every word of truth so we’ll be confused and so we keep on wrangling about words instead of seeking God’s Word to know the truth.
The enemy wants us to fall. One of the enemy’s tactics is to get people to fight about anything and everything. Fighting over words may keep some people from ever finding out the truth. Let’s study God’s Word to be approved. We can ask God to help us have discernment and ask God to help us understand the truth. The next time a preacher stands in the pulpit telling you something that doesn’t add up pray about that and search God’s Word for truth on the subject.
Five years ago a pastor told me to look in the Bible to see that men who do not fear God are the type of people who refuse to change. Those type of people may walk around thinking they are doing everything right but if they don’t stop to examine themselves to see if there is something God wants them to change about themselves they could end up missing out on many blessings that come from God.
“The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom.”
“People that do not fear God will not make positive changes in their lives to get right with God before they leave this earth.”
God will punish people who do not repent of their sins. ← Even people who have accepted Christ Jesus into their hearts will be chastised by our Heavenly Father if God chooses to do this. God is full of mercy. He is extra kind. He does not punish as we deserve. He also allowed His Son, JESUS, to suffer for our sins. The suffering Christ did for us does not eliminate the law of reciprocity. “Do not be deceived. God will not be mocked. Whatsoever a man soweth that shall he also reap.” ~ Bible
People who claim to know God should find out what he is really like. God is an awesome loving God who desires good things for his people. God does love his children enough to chastise them.
These thoughts are being shared by Elizabeth Evans Wolfe