Jesus is Lord
- There is always a pathway forward that honors Jesus.
- Find that path and follow it.
Jesus is Joy
- We always have the choice between the moments of happiness we create for ourselves and the lasting joy that comes from being obedient to Jesus.
- Choose joy.
Jesus is Life
- When you don’t see life, it’s because of three things:
- God’s justice.
- The world’s corruption
- Satan’s works.
There’s Always a Backstory
2 Kings 6:26-30 (ESV) – 26 Now as the king of Israel was passing by on the wall, a woman cried out to him, saying, “Help, my lord, O king!” 27 And he said, “If the Lord will not help you, how shall I help you? From the threshing floor, or from the winepress?” 28 And the king asked her, “What is your trouble?” She answered, “This woman said to me, ‘Give your son, that we may eat him today, and we will eat my son tomorrow.’ 29 So we boiled my son and ate him. And on the next day I said to her, ‘Give your son, that we may eat him.’ But she has hidden her son.”
- Bad economy
- No governmental intervention
- No communal support
- No family support
- No intervention from godly people
- People felt alone.
Looking at the Big Picture Helps the Small Picture
James 2:15–16 (ESV) – 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?
When we only judge and rebuke people who have had abortions, we often make their situations worse.
Reducing the number of abortions requires that we look at the invisible influences on people’s decisions.
- James 2:1–4 (ESV) – 1 My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. 2 For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, 3 and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, “You sit here in a good place,” while you say to the poor man, “You stand over there,” or, “Sit down at my feet,” 4 have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?
- Revelation 12:9 (ESV) – 9 And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.
- John 10:10 (ESV) – 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
- 2 Corinthians 11:14 (ESV) – 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.
- 1 Timothy 4:1–2 (ESV) – Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, 2 through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are seared,
Poor people have a purpose. (James 2:5 (ESV) – 5 Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him?)
The Power of Marketing
1 John 2:15 (ESV): 15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
“The world is Satan’s advertising agency.”–Dr. Hart Ramsey
- Satan rebrands evil as good and death as life.
- 2 Corinthians 11:12–15 (ESV): 12 And what I am doing I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. 13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.
We Are God’s Brand Ambassadors
2 Corinthians 5:20 (ESV): 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
2 Corinthians 10:3–5 (ESV) – 3 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. 5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,
© Joshua D. Smith, Ph.D., 2022