By Whose Standard-Part 1
Heart to Heart

 

      As of late we have been hearing alarming statistics on the rapid escalation of premarital sex, unwed mothers, adultery, pornographic addiction, and divorce in the Christian community. While these statistics certainly reveal the condition of the Christian community at large, they fail to identify the cause for this rise in immorality. Like placing Band-Aids on a gushing artery, men have come rushing to the rescue touting quick fix remedies such as parents just need to turn off the television once in awhile and read to their kids; or parents just need to spend more quality time with their kids; or parents just need to get their kids in church, a youth group, or a Christian school (It doesn’t matter which one, just get them involved); or just homeschool them; and everything will be all right.

      To human reasoning this appears reasonable and good, but consider the following statistics from the Nehemiah Institute (taken from the Worldview Weekend of America brochure), which discloses a staggering prediction describing a frightening world fast approaching if we remain on the course most are following.

      Nehemiah Institute has conducted a test to determine an individual’s worldview in five key areas: politics, economics, education, religion, and social issues. Results from each category are classified into one of four major worldview philosophies: Christian Theism, Moderate Christian, Secular Humanism, and Socialism. From 1988-2000, average scores of Christian school students dropped by 30.3%. Results of evangelical family students in public schools dropped 36.8%.

      Christian students attending public schools now regularly score in the lower half of secular humanism, headed toward a socialistic worldview. Students in typical Christian schools score as a secular humanist. However, the average Christian school student is just a few points away from having a moderate Christian worldview. Based on projections using the decline rate from Christian students, the church will have lost her posterity to hard-core humanism between 2014-2018.

      At this unprecedented rate of falling prey to humanistic thinking, concerned Christians need to work together to change this course before we lose everything our Founding Fathers sacrificed their lives for, so that we could worship freely without fear of imprisonment or losing our lives. First we must get to the heart of the problem, which in fact is the problem.

      “This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far away from Me” (Matt. 15:8). “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matt. 6:21). “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves to sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed” (Rom. 6:17).

      See, although many profess to be Christians, their hearts are far from God because their hearts became obedient to the teaching to which they committed. This is why God repeatedly warns us to “watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life” (Prov. 4:23). However, contrary to God’s warnings, most people believe that it doesn’t make any difference who shapes their minds as long as they are “Christians.” But it does!

 

Conversations with Christians

 

      Let us share a few conversations we have had with Christians (most of them homeschoolers) who are in positions that wield a great amount of influence and who have fallen prey to human reasoning.

      A pastor said, “Candy you must have some resentment in you somewhere. You can’t grow up without some animosity toward your parents. You just need to get in touch with yourself. It would make you a better person. I personally realize that I’m impatient with my children because my father was impatient with me.”

      My response: First of all, why would I want to get in touch with something that would make me unhappy? Secondly, I have died, and it is no longer I who live but Christ who lives within me. We aren’t supposed to be self-conscious but Christ-conscious. The only time I look at my walk is to make sure it’s in alignment with God’s plumbline. In respect to my parents, God has commanded me to honor them. As far as blaming them for any of my past sins, let me say that my Heavenly Father who created me and nurtured me is truly my perfect parent. Yet not once did I blame Him for my sins. Sinning is a choice. Any time that I sinned, it is because I chose to, not because God made me. No one ever forces another to sin. Furthermore, God says, “The old things passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Cor. 5:17). I am a new creature in Christ, so I don’t look back. Besides, God tells me “to be holy, for I am holy” (1 Pet. 1:16). Finally, I have disciplined myself to take every thought captive to the throne of Christ as He has commanded me (2 Cor. 10:5). Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), and “The truth shall set you free” (John 8:32).

      His response? “Candy, you look at life through rose-colored glasses.” To which I replied, “I think it’s called God’s perspective.”

      The husband of one of our homeschooling moms would sit with the woman he was having an affair with on one side of the church during services, while his wife sat on the other. Why did the church allow this? “Because we are all sinners, so who are we to judge?”

      Another pastor said that having (biblical) authority over our children in this day and age’s culture won’t work. (Since when does culture alter God’s Word?)

      A deaconess, when she heard about church discipline, said that she had never heard of such a thing. Even after I read to her the scriptures in Matthew on church discipline, she said that her church would never be so mean and self-righteous.

      When Jon and another pastor were talking about a young woman who continued to walk in sin after repeated pleadings to repent, the pastor said that if she’s deceived (which he believed she was), then she is not held accountable for her sins. Jon replied that hell was full of a lot of deceived people because they believed the lies of Satan. Paul warns, “But I am afraid, lest as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds should be led astray …” (2 Cor. 11:3).

      Romans 1 tells us that in the day of wrath God will render to every man according to his deeds, for it is not the hearers of the Law who are just before God, but the doers of the Law will be justified.

      This pastor was making light of this woman’s sins and excusing them, while Jon was grieving for her because of her unrepentance.

      Jon always uses Saul and David as examples for our children. Both were anointed by God as God’s chosen, and both sinned greatly. However, when both were confronted about their sins, only David (a man after God’s own heart) grieved and grieved over his sin, repented, and was forgiven.

      Repentance is defined as “real penitence; sorrow for sin as an offense and dishonor to God, a violation of His holy law, and the basest ingratitude towards a Being of infinite benevolence. Repentance is a conversion from sin to God.”

      Leaders and teachers of a learning center told others and us that God cannot know what is in our thoughts or hearts; therefore, like with Abraham, He must test us. The leaders and teachers of the learning center believe that “God does not know our hearts, does not know our minds, and does not know the future.” The first verse that comes to mind is 1 Chronicles 28:9 where David beseeches Solomon to “know the God of your father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts … if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.”

      Other scriptures are, “And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, ‘Why are you thinking evil in your hearts?’” (Matt. 9:4). “For He knows the secrets of the heart” (Ps. 44:21). “For (even) the word of God is living and active … and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (Heb. 4:12). Wow! There’s not room enough here to give all the scriptures contrary to this heresy.

      Yet one of our support group leaders thinks we ought to advertise this learning center because the classes are free, and people want them. She just tells people not to take any classes taught by this couple, yet we know that at least two other teachers there hold to this heretical theology because they tried to proselytize two of our support group leaders. We also know that families have pulled out of classes because this teaching was being taught to their students there. Even now, other leaders are showing great concern over this teaching. Several years ago, prominent men who had previously been involved with the center met with Jon and I to let us know about their grave concerns over what was going on at this learning center. Do we send kids to teachers who could turn their hearts away from God just because the classes are free? Absolutely not! We take our responsibility seriously because we are accountable to God. Furthermore, His people trust us to make decisions based on His Word.

      Leaders recently told us that they want to make everything available to homeschoolers and that they feel absolutely no responsibility over how it might affect families. They were not going to check web sites before they printed them, and even if a child got hooked on pornography because of one of the sites they printed, they would not feel any responsibility. They also feel that homeschoolers should have access to the City Museum information even though the City Museum reads tarot cards because homeschoolers don’t have to see the tarot cards being read. They just don’t have to go to that floor. Wow! Then they used an example that we shop at Schnucks, which sells alcohol.

      First of all, alcohol is not evil in and of itself. It is the unrestrained consumption of it that God warns against. I personally don’t like alcohol, but Jesus actually turned water into wine at a wedding, and Paul tells Timothy to take a little for his stomach. Yet God throughout His Word speaks very strongly against any form of sensuality or fornication. Even if a man commits adultery in his heart, he is guilty of adultery. God clearly states that neither fornicators nor adulterers shall inherit the kingdom of God. God also has a lot to say about sorcery, divination, and evil spirits.

      When asked where they would draw the line, they said that certainly abortion is evil, and they would stay away from that. Why, we asked, because babies are involved, that makes it wrong?

      If we do not base our decisions on God’s Holy and Perfect Word, then our decisions are left to the discretion of personal likes and dislikes and to the whims of the emotions.

      A homeschooling mom just recently justified another mom’s remarriage by saying that she is so happy now because this husband is so kind and loving.

      Circumstances do not define right and wrong, nor do personal preferences. See, I had loved this other mother very much and pleaded with her to give up her adulterous affair because God said, “Thou shalt not commit adultery” (Deut. 5:18). “‘I hate divorce,’ says the Lord” (Mal. 2:16). “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge” (Heb. 13:4). Adulterers shall not inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9).

      Finally, a response from an elderly lady who has been in church all her life and taught Sunday School and Bible studies, a response so chilling yet so indicative of today’s Christian thinking: “Candy, you and Jon take your religion way too far. I am no match to your knowledge of scriptures, and I don’t want to hear any scriptures.” More significantly, “I don’t want to know what God says. I only know what I think, and based on my experience …”

      It is most definitely the “I think” that always leads to sin and what has led us to where we are today. All our words and actions demonstrate our devotion, either to God’s Word or to human reasoning, which seems to know better than God. This is truly not only an assault on God’s Word, but also on His supremacy.

      Lust, premarital sex, adultery, pornography, deception, lying, dishonoring parents, and disobedience to parents are all manifestations of a rebellious heart—a heart not tethered to God’s Word.

      A Christian’s convictions are not based on what he thinks, how he feels, or on his personal experience but on God’s Word, pure and simple, undiluted, and straightforward because he trusts God’s Word to be true.

      Not only are we greatly troubled by these conversations, but also multitudes of families are sharing their shock and grief over similar experiences and are seeking comfort and encouragement to help them stand against the bombardment of harassment they are receiving for their stand on God’s Word. You just can’t imagine all the parents across the state who not only are not getting the support they need to help them with their rebellious children, but actually have everyone against them including the “church” body. It is truly a war over our families’ souls.

 

A Biblical Worldview Versus False Religions

 

      A worldview is the way in which we view the world—the way we see things, the way we think, and the way we act in accordance with that thinking. Our worldview literally affects absolutely everything we do.

      A biblical worldview is seeing everything from a biblical perspective and applying God’s Word to every area of life. It is believing the Bible to be God’s literal, true Word, as relevant today as it was when He first expressed it, regardless of the time, culture, or sway of man’s rebellious nature. A humanistic worldview, on the other hand, trusts in human reasoning and acts accordingly.

      Yes, we stand in the midst of a rebellious generation, but the humanism of today is no different from the humanism of Nimrod and the Tower of Babel. It actually began in heaven when Satan and a third of his angels were cast out of heaven because they wanted to be god.

      Today, living in a country where it’s easy to call oneself a Christian because it costs nothing, we need to evaluate our own lives and the lives that influence our families in the light of scripture rather than resting in our human reasoning, that we are Christians just because we call ourselves Christians. Our relationship with God better be more than just knowing Him because the demons know God and tremble.

      We better do more than just use God’s name, for Jesus says, “The gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it. Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits…. Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast our demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’ Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine, and acts upon them, may be compared to a wise man, who built his house upon the rock. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew … yet it did not fall, for it had been founded upon the rock. And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act upon them, will be like a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand…. and it fell, and great was its fall” (Matt. 7:13-16, 21-27).

      Throughout history, all false religions demonstrated their familiarity with God’s Word but refused to submit to it. Most even admired and respected Jesus as a great philosopher and teacher taking bits, pieces, and parts of His teaching and making it their own. Yet they denied His deity, so completed the rest of their idols with their own human reasoning. Isn’t this exactly what most professing Christians do today when they take only the bits and pieces of God’s Word that suit them, and then either ignore or distort and alter the rest to fit their own plans? Their religion and their god become a matter of convenience. In essence, like all pagan religions, they minimize God’s power and authority. Sadly, they become hypocrites in the world’s eyes and apostates in God’s.

      Any attempt to edit God’s Word by choosing to believe what we want and to act in a way that seems right to us makes us nothing more than heretics. A heretic is defined as “Among Christians, a person who holds and avows religious opinions contrary to the doctrines of Scripture, the only rule of faith and practice.”

      “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Prov. 14:12). However, Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).

 

He Cannot Be Our Saviour Without Being Our Lord

 

      It seems there is a growing majority of religious people who say Jesus is Lord and Saviour of their lives, but in actuality they want Jesus as their Saviour, but never as their Lord; because, in truth, they could never submit to a Lord. They like the idea of a saviour who loves them enough to save them but cannot abide the thought of a God who loves them enough to discipline them or demand something of them. That is way too uncomfortable and inconvenient. They will take all the love that tolerates them as they are and as they desire to be, but forget the commandments of that holy God of the Old Testament. They have actually even justified their desire by believing that that God no longer exists. In reality, He just doesn’t fit into their way of doing things.

      Really, they ought to go ahead and rip out the Old Testament from their Bibles and white out all the New Testament references to the Old Testament, and then white out all the other verses in the New Testament that bother them. Of course, instead, they just disregard the Old Testament as, “Oh, the Old Testament,” meaning that they are New Testament believers and that all that law stuff was for those other people (you know, God’s chosen). Certainly god doesn’t hold the same standards for us. They really believe in a flower-child god who just LUVS everybody so much now, that he would never punish anyone for his sins, hold anyone accountable for his actions, or look down on any sin anymore because he has seen the light and the error of his ways. As one pastor put it, “The way I see it, God treated the people of the Old Testament like children, but now he treats us like adults.” Wow, what a slap to Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, David, Josiah, Daniel, and Nehemiah.

      The LUV god no longer calls sin sin. Oh no, they say we must never use the “s” word again, for god is nothing but LUV. He saves but never lords it over anyone. Their god rather reminds us of those Hare Krishna guys who pass out flowers to everyone they meet. Yikes! What an awful, impotent god to worship.

      That kind of god, like the harlot who throws rose petals down the path, will lead all to the same place—an open grave. See, it truly is playing the harlot to deny the awesome attributes of the living omnipotent God who is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, whom Rich Mullins wrote about in his song, “Our God Is an Awesome God.”

      “Our God is an awesome God who reigns from heaven above with wisdom, power, and love. Our God is an awesome God … There’s thunder in His footsteps and lightning in His fists. Our God is an awesome God. The Lord wasn’t joking when He kicked ‘em out of Eden. It wasn’t for no reason that He shed His blood. His return is very close and you better be believing. Our God is an awesome God. Judgment and wrath He poured out on Sodom. Mercy and grace He gave us at the cross. I hope that we have not too quickly forgotten, that our God is an awesome God.”

      Any man who chooses to believe only those things he wishes to embrace and submit to is creating his own idol. “Their idols are … the work of man’s hands. They have mouths, but they cannot speak; They have eyes, but they cannot see; They have ears, but they cannot hear; They have noses, but they cannot smell; They have hands, but they cannot feel; They have feet, but they cannot walk … Those who make them will become like them, everyone who trusts in them” (Ps. 115:4-8). Man worships the god he sees and becomes like the god he worships. In everything he does, he reveals the god whom he serves.

      Their religion is a matter of convenience to them—to be loved and saved, but never submitting to God’s eternal Word. But God says, “He that loveth Me keepeth My commandments” (John 14:15). “And by this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, ‘I have come to know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him; … By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked” (1 John 2:3-6). 1 Corinthians 6:10 tells us that idolaters shall not inherit the kingdom of God. “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of God shall stand forever” (Is. 40:7).

      If we are bold enough in the face of God to call ourselves Christians, meaning like Christ, then we must, like Christ, believe that we can do nothing of ourselves but submit to the will of the Father—not mine, but Thy will be done (John 6:38, John 5:30, and Luke 22:42). Only in America would people profess to be Christians and not submit to God. In most other countries where Christians are being persecuted, tortured, and murdered for their belief in God, it just isn’t sensible to call yourself a Christian unless you’re willing to lose your life.

      Like Rich Mullins, we do not see a discrepancy with our God who demands obedience, but makes a way for us to be obedient; our God who is all knowing and all powerful, yet gives us a free will to choose life or death; who demands respect, honor, and obedience, but who loves us more than we can ever understand; who is just, but slow to anger, compassionate, and merciful to those who draw near to His throne for help; who loves us enough to discipline us for our own good; who requires us to die to self that we may live with Him forever; who allows us to suffer, but rewards us for our suffering for His name’s sake. His attributes are truly harmonious. He reminds us of our own earthly fathers who loved us, nurtured us, provided for us, and protected us, but also demanded obedience and disciplined us for our own good.

      Throughout the Bible we can readily see how easily God’s people fall away. Are we on our way? Most definitely! Not only has secular thought permeated every facet of our culture, more profoundly troubling is that most of the church has succumbed and is now defying God’s commandments. Instead of defending God’s truth and influencing the world, the church is being influenced by the world. The church has surrendered to the power of the evil one and has become blind, deaf, and dumb like the idols they have created and now worship.

      Jude warns and exhorts us to “contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain persons have crept in unnoticed … ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ…. Woe to them! For they have gone the way of Cain … rushed headlong into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah…. caring for themselves; clouds without water, carried along by winds; autumn trees without fruit, doubly dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars … flattering people for the sake of gaining an advantage … mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts … worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit” (Jude 3,4,11-13,16, 18,19).

      What have these men done? They have perverted God’s grace into licentiousness, which is defined as “an excessive indulgence of liberty; contempt for just restraints of law; unrestrained; indulging freedom to excess.” Licentiousness is absolutely repugnant to the law of God, for grace is defined as “divine influence of the Spirit in renewing the heart and restraining from sin.”

      Satan, being the “father of lies” and the “angel of light,” wants sin to appear to be okay. He does not want us to be convicted of our sins and therefore wants us to think that there is no wrath for sin. Sin always wants acceptance, approval, and sympathy. The message of today surely fits his plan, for we are forever inundated with the message of a loving god who tolerates our sins, accepts us as we are, never judging us or holding us accountable for anything we do. His grace is never ending, covering anything and everything. This sadly has convinced many that they can continue to indulge in their sins because of God’s unfailing grace.

      “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace might increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? … our old self was crucified with Him … that we should no longer be slaves to sin … Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body that you should obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God … as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law, but under grace. What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? May it never be! Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness? … though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed … you became slaves of righteousness…. so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification (holiness)…. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:1,2,6,12-19,23).

      When we die to ourselves and totally yield our flesh to Him, His Spirit empowers us to obey His Word. “For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:15,16).

      Tragically, unprepared for battle, unguarded, and undisciplined in seeking God, wearied and dulled by the constant whirlwind of activity allowing no time to wait upon Him, many have been lulled to sleep and have fallen prey to this false teaching. Consequently, there is no hunger for God’s Word, no burden for holiness, no sacrificial living for God’s ways. Now the time has come “when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths” (2 Tim. 4:3,4). But Paul clearly warns us in Colossians 2:8 to “see to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human traditions and the basic principles of this world, rather than on Christ.”

      “But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars … But have nothing to do with worldly fables … On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness” (1 Tim. 4:1,2,7). Then in verse 6, “In pointing out these things to the brethren, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which you have been following.”

 

Our Responsibility

 

      When Christians live in a society where pride, ungodliness, disobedience, sensuality, and corruption profit a man more than humility, faith, obedience, virtue, modesty, and justice, then Christians have no time to waste. We must defend the truth and make God’s Word be known.

      In 2 Timothy 4:1-3, Paul says, “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God … preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine …” “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes …” (Rom. 1:16).

      Remember that our weapons for warfare are “divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor. 10:4,5).

      God tells us that we are to be the “salt [which seasons and preserves] of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless … it is good for nothing anymore, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You are the light [meaning knowing, understanding, wise; to illuminate, enlighten, make perceptible, instruct, saving knowledge, bringing deliverance] of the world…. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 5:13,14,16).

      Home education offers us an unparalleled opportunity to spend more time seeking God so we may know His Word and teach His Word (the whole truth and nothing but the truth) to impart a biblical worldview in which we teach our children to evaluate everything in the light of God’s Word so they can apply His Word to every area of life. We are preserving a remnant that can go out and powerfully change the hearts of men, but for this to happen we must prepare ourselves first.

      We must begin by praying for a desire to be obedient in all things and praying for wisdom, which God promises to give generously to those who ask (James 1:5).

      We must then lay aside everything that keeps us from this ultimate task. Next we must choose to have a Christian mind—a mind like Christ—by disciplining ourselves to diligently study God’s Word every day, meditating on it day and night (Ps. 1). Then we must teach it to our children when we rise up, when we lie down, and while we walk along the way (Deut. 11:18-28).

      “The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; the judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether. They are more desirable than gold … sweeter than honey … Moreover, by them Thy servant is warned; in keeping them there is great reward” (Ps. 19:7-11).

      Memorizing scripture was established long ago to keep us from sin. “Thy word have I hid in my heart that I may not sin against Thee” (Ps. 119:11).

      Furthermore, we must protect our children and ourselves from anyone and any teaching that is contrary to God’s Word. God tells us that Satan is constantly scheming to see whom he can devour.

      “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things” (Phil. 4:8).

      God tells us, “My son, give attention to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your sight; keep them in the midst of your heart. For they are life to those who find them, and health to all their whole body. Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flows the springs of life…. Let your eyes look directly ahead, and let your gaze be fixed straight ahead in front of you. Watch the path of your feet, and all your ways will be established. Do not turn to the right nor to the left; turn your foot from evil” (Prov. 4:20-23,25-27).

      Finally brethren, “… let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart” (Heb. 12:1-3). Y

      [Please pray for us that God will keep us from temptation. The enemy would like nothing more than to have us fall into gross sin after an article like this.]