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Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Road We Travel

I was going to title this post ‘are you smarter than a donkey?’ but then I thought better of it seeing as some of the more hyper sensitive folks might take offense to it. As mentioned in a previous post, I get borderline obsessive over certain scripture passages, and after diligent study, one message turns into two, two messages turn into four, but it would be a waste not to dig as deep as we can if we’ve already rolled up our sleeves, and have the shovel in hand. Who knows, that next shovelful of dirt may reveal the treasure hiding beneath, and once the treasure is discovered, it makes all our labors seem insignificant at best. Once again, we find ourselves discussing Balaam and his journey of disobedience, because after finishing the last message concerning his donkey, God poured a fresh message into my heart.

Cliché as it might sound, all roads lead somewhere. When we begin a journey, we pull out the map, (yep still old school, no global positioning here), we plot our course, and we hold to the highway which will lead us to our desired destination. It is imperative that we know where we want to end up, what our final destination will ultimately be, as well as how we go about getting there.

I heard a story once, of a man who was headed to Florida from Chicago, and somewhere in Utah he stopped for gas. He put the gas pump on automatic, went inside for a few refreshments, and struck up a conversation with the clerk, who asked him where he was from, and where he was going.

‘Still got a long way to go’ the man answered, ‘I’m headed to Florida.’

‘I’d say you’ve got a long way to go, you’re headed in the wrong direction’, the clerk told the man. Some months earlier the man had taken a trip to Los Angeles by car, having programmed his GPS as such, and even though he’d typed in his new destination, for some reason his unit displayed his previous trip. He’d driven over a thousand miles in the wrong direction, because he’d trusted the gadget and not his own senses, he didn’t pay attention to the road he was traveling on, leaving it to a machine to tell him where to go.

Spiritually speaking, we don’t trust machines to tell us where to go, but we do trust men, and we trust them so much that we don’t bother to look up and see if we’re headed for the destination the men we trusted told us that we were. Like the aforementioned gentleman, we revert back to our previous journey, the one leading us away from God, all the while thinking that we are headed in the right direction, because someone tells us that we are. Pull out the map, open it up, take your finger, and trace your journey, and know the road that you travel. Open your Bible, read it, and if what someone has been telling you is permissible isn’t permissible in the Word, then turn around, and start traveling the right road.

What we must understand is that there are millions of pernicious roads, but only one righteous path. Contrary to popular belief, not all roads lead to heaven as all roads once led to Rome, in fact all roads save one lead to hell. Yes, I know, intolerant of me to assert that there is only one way into the kingdom of God, but I’m just repeating the words of Jesus the Son of God.

Numbers 22:32, “And the angel of the Lord said to him, ‘why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way is perverse before Me.”

Until the angel spoke these words to him, between Balaam and the donkey, the donkey was the only one that knew they were headed down the wrong path. I will gladly play the talking donkey if it will cause one soul to realize that their way is perverse before God, and that He finds no pleasure in it. I will gladly bear the title of beast of burden, if one person realizes that absent the path of righteousness, and the path of Christ, there is no other path that will lead to the salvation of your soul, and eternal reconciliation with God.

Men choose the road they walk, but there are always consequences to the choices we make. The way of destruction is wide, and well paved, and spiraling ever downward, so that one need not exert much energy in walking it. Once a soul begins to walk the road that leads to destruction, it is inertia that propels him ever onward, so much so that he has to consciously attempt to slow himself down before coming to a sprint. It is far easier to walk downhill than it is to walk uphill, and a great many souls have chosen the easy path that leads to death because it requires no effort on their part.

As I said there are consequences to choosing the way of destruction, and there are things that happen along the way that should be as a blaring alarm to our inner man. The first thing that happens when we choose a perverse way, when we choose a different path is that we are removed from the presence of God, and His hand of blessing is no longer upon us.

Before their fall, before the succumbed to the temptation of the serpent Adam and Eve enjoyed all the benefits of the garden, they enjoyed fellowship with God, they enjoyed an intimacy with Him, yet after the fall, God cast them from before His sight, expelled them from the garden, and cursed the ground for their sake. They had disobeyed, and in their rebellion and disobedience were removed from before the sight of God.

Whichever perverse way you have considered walking on, whether the way of materialism, the way of idolatry, the way of envy, the way of lawlessness, I urge you I beseech you, I beg you, remain on the path that is Christ, because no other path, no other way will give you peace, and joy and hope.

The perverse way never ends in blessing, it never ends in the favor of God, it never ends at the doors of heaven, the perverse way always leads to God standing against us, to God rebuking us, and to God judging us.

If you’ve heard different, whoever you heard it from is a liar and the truth is not found in them. If you believe different, then my I submit that until the angel of the Lord appeared before Balaam, and told him he had come to stand against him, he too thought he was headed down a righteous path. There is no path if Jesus is not the path, there is no hope if Jesus is not the hope, there is no truth if Jesus is not the truth, and there is no life if Jesus is not the life.

We know the road we once traveled, we know the sin that once beset us, we know the rebellion we once lived in, and we must be weary, and vigilant, that once we have known the way of Christ, once we have started our journey on the righteous path, we continue in it until the end.

It’s when we finish our journey that we finish our journey, it’s when we finish our race that we receive our crown.

Revelation 2:10, “Do not fear any of those things which you are about to suffer. Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”

With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You mentioned suffering, Michael. I have a feeling that the uproar concerning Harold Camping's false prophecy will result in an increased hostility toward Christian's in general, especially the U.S. I have heard much ranting and raving on airwaves regarding "the rapture" not taking place, also, through general coversations in the market place. Many are increasingly mocking Bible-believing Christians, Jesus Christ, and the Bible altogether since this prediction failed to manifest. What's more, Camping's false prophecy will indeed make it more of a challenge to present the gospel and the message concerning God's judgment on the United States. I know you breifly alluded to Harold Campings' false prophecy before, however, if you would consider writing an article addressing recent developments, I would appreciate it.