Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Being Wise As Serpents

Jesus, speaking to those He was sending out in His name, said in Matthew 10:16, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be as wise as serpents, and as harmless as doves.”

Most genuine Believers have little trouble being as harmless as doves, where we seem the most inept is in being wise as serpents. Time and again I see well-meaning Believers taken in by lying and scheming individuals whose sole purpose is to either advance or defend themselves. The naivete and gullibility of these Believers do great harm to the cause of Christ, because they often step in prop up those who God seems to be bringing pressure upon.

This unwillingness to see people as they truly are, is not a Godly trait, even though worldly church members, and unbelievers seem to look with favor upon such actions as being really Christian. No where did Christ excuse lying and misrepresentation, and we must be careful lest we appear to approve of an ungodly lifestyle in the name of trying to “love” one. Such apparent approval is taken as affirmation by those in error to continue their destructive ways.

While one receiving such perceived affirmation might sense within himself, or herself, that living together is wrong, he is apt to justify it because it seems accepted by a Believer. Though cohabitation is by no means the only example of such, it is the most commonly and openly practiced lifestyle which hits at the very foundation of Christ’s teachings.

A Genuine Believer should never be cruel or unjust, but he should confront those with whom he has influence about the error. Such confrontation is not to condemn, but rather to encourage such a one to turn from the destructive path he/she has chosen.

No one need stay in the miry pit of destruction. It is a choice, but God is faithful in that He will provide a way of escape should one so choose. That escape is based upon the finished work of Jesus Christ at Calvary and must be taken at such time as God is calling to the individual.

Let us be faithful to warn the wayward, encourage the weak, and lift up the fallen even as we learn to recognize lying lips lest we inadvertently affirm them in their error.

© 2010 Mike Rasberry

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