A Word with You - Dec. 17, 2008

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The Measurement Mess

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NASA had high hopes for their first Mars orbiter - it would make possible some exciting new research into the Red Planet. They were stunned when suddenly, without warning, they lost the Mars orbiter in deep space. After the initial shock, NASA tried to determine what went wrong. The answer was almost as alarming as losing the orbiter itself. The fatal malfunction turns out it was the result of a tragic error in calculations - bad math doomed the Mars craft. One set of engineers had worked with English measurements, while another set of engineers did their calculations by the metric system!

A costly failure was the result of measuring by two different standards. A lot of failures are, especially in the lives of believers in Jesus like us. You see, it happens when we try to measure our choices by two standards that cannot possibly be reconciled; what the Bible tells us to do and what our culture says is OK - yes, even our Christian culture.

That's why we need to hear this word for today from the Word of God in Joshua 24:15. Then, as now, God's people were torn between a cultural drumbeat that was pulling them one way and the standards of their God. Here's the challenge, "Throw away the gods our forefathers worshipped...in Egypt and serve the Lord. But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served...or the gods of the Amorites in whose land your are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord."

You have to make that same kind of clear-cut, no-compromise choice. You just can't run your life by two different standards. Jesus said, "No man can serve two masters." Your culture says divorce is OK. Your God says, "I hate divorce" (Malachi 2:16). The world around you says you have to accumulate more and more for security...Jesus says security comes from letting go of what you have and trusting Him to take care of you. You lose your life by hanging onto it; you find your life by giving it away.

The culture says something that portrays things that breaks God's heart is "must see" TV or a "must see" movie. God says, "Guard your heart; it is the wellspring of life" (Proverbs 4:23). Conventional wisdom tells you that you can't be totally honest and succeed. God says, "Put off falsehood and speak truthfully" (Ephesians 4:25) that He will only bless total integrity. Our tolerant culture says, "There are many ways to God." Your Savior says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes to the Father except by Me" (John 14:6). Those can't both be true. You have to choose one and stake everything on it.

It's that way with all the choices I mentioned and so many more that you're faced with each day. You can't keep vacillating; commuting back and forth between what the world around you says is right and what your Lord says is right. You can't just go God's way when it's convenient, when it's easy, and when it doesn't cost you much. In God's words, you have to "choose this day whom you will serve." When you do, life is a whole lot less confusing.

Choose God's way always. If you keep trying to run your own life by two different standards, you're going to crash.

Copyright © 2008 Ron Hutchcraft Ministries, Inc.

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