But They Are Not Listening

2 Thessalonians 3: 14 If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that person and do not associate with him, so that he will be put to shame. 15 Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother. (NASB) For many years every time […]

2 Thessalonians 3: 14 If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that person and do not associate with him, so that he will be put to shame. 15 Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother. (NASB)

For many years every time I preached I felt that people needed to respond and if they didn’t, there was something wrong. Maybe something wrong with them, maybe something wrong with me or maybe I didn’t make the message clear. After preaching for a few years I thought that if people didn’t respond to the message they were callous and didn’t care about God. From that point on my interaction with them changed. I saw them in a different light. I would see God’s children as irresponsible, as mundane and irreverent. Needless to say, I thought less of my brothers and sisters. Their lack of response made me lose respect for them in all manners. I would see them as my enemies, because they were enemies of God. I WAS WRONG!

Reading this verse, I can see how wrong I was to treat them that way. Paul’s instruction was to not regard them as enemies, and that is exactly what I did. Paul’s instruction is to go talk to that person as a brother. When you love your brother, you will be kind. You will have a listening ear. You want what is best for him. You will be patient. You will have compassion. God wants us to help him, not fight him. It took some time for me to understand that. I understood it when someone came to talk to me when I wasn’t listening. I will always appreciate my brother for doing that.

 

Groundhog Day

14 And God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, 15 and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth." And it was...

Provided

And he said, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD." (Job 1:21 ESV) Those words spoken by Job need to be pondered by all of us. We came into this world with nothing...

Some Wisdom for the Day

When the righteous increase, the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule, the people groan. (Prov. 29:2 ESV) One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor. (Prov. 29:23 ESV) Scoffers set a city aflame, but the wise turn away wrath....

In Him

In Christ we have every spiritual blessing heaven has to offer. It was God’s choice even before he created the world to choose those who are in Christ to be his chosen people. In Christ we are considered holy and blameless before God. In Christ we are adopted as God’s...

It Is Written

It may have been about 2005 when we moved into our current subdivision. Our house was one of the first houses built in our area of the subdivision. I’m not trying to offer that as an excuse for what happened, but then again, I may be. Entering our subdivision the...

Out With the Old, In With the New

A common slogan as we bring to an end the current year and look with anticipation to the coming new year. A slogan good for the passing of a year that is ending, but not good for everything. There is no “new” word of God. There is the word of God. That word is still...

Some Things Change, Some Don’t

We headed South to spend a couple of days with our vacationing grandchildren and their parents. On the way, our GPS kept giving me directions toward our destination. It kept saying, “Go toward Mobile”. It kept pronouncing it “Mo-bull” instead of “Mo-bill”. I wondered...

What’s Your Custom?

What are your habits of life? How would your family describe your customs? Twice in the New Testament the phrase is used, “as was his custom,” in reference to Jesus. In Mark 10:1 it is used to refer to his custom of teaching the people. In Luke 4:16, his going to the...

Follow Me

From time to time I will see trucks with a “Follow Me” sign on their tailgate. As a matter of fact, I followed one just last week who was directing traffic around the construction of a new bridge in our area. I understood where he was leading me. When I see a truck...

Treasure of Truth

The Bible is a vast treasure chest of truth. It is ours for the digging and the searching. Not just in every book or chapter. But in every verse and word of each verse. Consider this verse: Afterward He appeared to the eleven themselves as they were reclining at the...