Lesson 12 -- fourth quarter 1996
November 17, 1996
© Copyright 1996, Christian Light Publications
How shall we break forth into freedom?
So now you know better some of the symptoms and causes of spiritual captivity. Perhaps last Sunday's youth page left you in a very negative frame of mind. So let's look up today. Having seen symptoms and causes, let's turn to consider some solutions directly from the Scriptures.
"Turn Thou us unto Thee, O Lord!" Get your ship back on course, get your train back on track, get your vision refocused. You will never attain to strengthened conviction and spiritual perception unless the Lord gets you back to Himself. Only the Lord can con sume your life in the pursuit of His values. By God's grace your interper sonal conflicts will blossom into peace and teamwork. And as He works His wondrous way in marriages and families, we will find genuine abundance and functionality. As the psalmist put it, "Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved" (Psalm 80:7). May we grant the Lord full access in our lives so He may put His fear in us, that we not depart from Him (Jeremiah 32:40).
Avoid bearing the iniquities of our fathers. Do not underes timate the impact of preceding generations. There are parts of our individ ual heritages which we likely need to specifically reject. Do not misunder stand me here: Unless you are also guilty of them, you do not need to repent of the sins of your forerunners. However, knowing that generational influ ence you would be wise to be especially alert to their manifestation in your life. A study of the Jewish kings makes this influence unmistakeably clear. Learn from the good kings who refused to continue in the ruts. Be it lust, materialism, immorality, rebellion, coldness or anything else, determine to be that breakwater which stops such influences from rippling their way through further generations. Among many instructional passages in this vein you will find Exodus 34:7, 2 Chronicles 34:21, Amos 2:4 and Daniel 9:16.
Resist and flee. If the enemy has you in captivity, he wants to keep you there. If he doesn't, he wants to put you there. Do you get it?! This is the time to press away from passivity! Sometimes I think some of us are so captivated by evil that we no longer have the will to re sist or flee.
Before I share some verses with you, I want to make a very simple point: Do not test your strength against the devil! He is stronger than you! Those who deliberately expose themselves to any kind of wrong in order to prove or establish their spiritual strength behave very foolishly. Somehow they get the idea that they don't have to flee evil as long as they have strength enough to resist it. Foolish! Check out Proverbs 7:26.
"Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteous ness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart" (2 Timothy 2:22).
"But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meek ness" (1 Timothy 6:11).
"Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:7).
"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accom plished in your brethren that are in the world" (1 Peter 5:8,9).
"Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil" (Ephesians 6:11).
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