Sunday, July 17, 2022

We Groan In This Earthly Body With Our Burdens

2nd Corinthians 5:4-10, “For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.”

I am often reminded of the simple yet profound small phrase in 2nd Corinthians 5:7, (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) What a beautiful truth! I don't know about you, but there have been umpteen times in my life when I just didn't feel like praying anymore. In my utter frustration I said: God, I'm done praying! Why should I keep praying when you never answer my prayers?” What I was doing is walking BY SIGHT, when I should have been walking BY FAITH. One of my favorite Gospel preachers is Evangelist Lester Roloff (1914-1982), who said: “You're going to have to learn to "faith" Him when you can't feel Him.” Amen!

The Apostle Paul said in our text passage that we all GROAN IN THIS TABERNACLE. Paul is speaking about our human body, which he likens to a tabernacle (a temporary tent). The apostle says that as believers we look forward to the future with confidence, KNOWING that once our earthly body is no longer able to house our soul and spirit, we will BE WITH THE DEAR LORD. Halleluiah! 

Therefore, Paul says that we labor to PLEASE THE LORD, knowing that we we someday stand at the JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST (2nd Corinthians 5:10-11). Oh how we have such a great responsibility as God's children to serve Him. It is not required to get to Heaven, but serving God is our reasonable service. Romans 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.What saith the Scripture? 1st Corinthians 6:20, “For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.”

Do you groan dear reader? Sure you do, and so do I. As a pastor I receive countless emails from hurting people. One dear lady recently told me that her adult daughter is talking about suicide. Another dear man just found out that a MRI brain scan came back positive (i.e., negative results). He asked me to pray for him, and I am doing just that! All we have is each other. If we don't pray for each other, then who will? We need each other's prayers.

Americans are confused like never before. They are tired. People are weary with all the insane gender-bending garbage, feminism, homosexuality, gender reassignment surgery for children, et cetera. These demonic agendas are being forced on young people by ungodly liberals lurking in social media, the entertainment industry and in the Devil's public schools. This country needs a revival toward the holy God of the inspired King James Bible. We need Bible-preaching like never before!!! The weak-kneed, shallow, neo-evangelical, wimpy, watered-down, theologically deficient and lame sermons being given in mega-churches today are impotent, woefully lacking the power of God's Holy Spirit to change lives. There is no Holy Spirit conviction anymore in churches, because there is no preaching against sin.

(chapter 16 from the classic book by Pastor Harry A. Ironside, "Except Ye Repent")

We all have burdens that make us GROAN! I sure do. I was severely rear-ended by a church bus (of all in 1992, which messed up my neck for life. I suffered severe whiplash that over time caused my neck to develop Cervical Degenerative Disk Disease by 2004. I then fell at work, which worsened my injury, causing sharp radiating pain down my arms and legs (mostly my right side). I reluctantly underwent two neck surgeries in 2009 and again in 2010, the second of which made me 100% worse. Unfortunately, my agonizing chronic neck pain is HEAR TO STAY. You better believe that I GROAN!!!

To make matters much worse, the cruel U.S. government is so incompetent, that they cannot figure out a way to get the much needed prescription pain medications, to those who genuinely need it (like me). So I needlessly suffer 24/7 from horribly neck pain, in the bony area of the back of my neck, which feels just like a horrible, bone-gnawing, toothache all the time. It prevents me from carrying on normal conversations with people. I often have to apologize for not being able to listen without putting my head down, squinting my eyes in response to the acute stuff tension and pain in my neck. It feels like a gold ball in my neck, pressing on my spinal cord. The doctors whom I have consulted about this diagnosed me with a pinched spinal cord (stenosis and radiculitis). Consequently, I have neuropathic nerve burning, especially in my arms and upper body, which makes me GROAN!!!

But praise the Lord, God is always good. I thank God that I can walk, drive and take care of myself, because a lot of disabled people can't. Whenever I get discouraged, I am reminded of this poor girl, Katie Stubblefield, who attempted suicide at age 17, but blew her face off instead. She was a very gorgeous young woman, but another female student in high school hurt her feelings deeply. Like me and a lot of people, Katie is intensely passionate about her feelings, so she over-reacted (I've done that more times than I can remember). That is why I will NEVER own a gun. No way Jose!

That is also why I have never started drinking booze. It will NEVER happen. You cannot become a drunk if you don't take the first drink. Amen and amen! I wish Mothers Against Drunk Driving (M.A.D.D) would stop teaching young people not to drink and drive. That is a very wrong message! If you drink booze, at some point you WILL drive! A much better message is that: You cannot become an alcoholic, if you don't take the first sip of beer! There is no need or reason to drink alcohol, except that people like to get buzzed and drunk. Alcohol has been a menace to every society since the begging of human civilization.

I often claim the PROMISE of God in the following Scripture passage:
Philippians 3:17-21, “Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.) For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”
I love that PROMISE! Jesus, who raised the dead back to life, will someday give IMMORTALITY to every believer. I can't wait! KNOWING this truth comforts me greatly as I GROAN in my bodily pain, discomfort and suffering. God will someday rectify all wrongs! So when you GROAN dear child of God, as we all do, hurting emotionally and physically in your body and soul, KNOW that this suffering is only temporal. What saith the Scripture? Romans 8:17, “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.”

Now, dear friend, if you have never been born-again by placing your childlike trust in the Good News of Jesus Christ crucified, buried and risen from the dead the third day, then you desperately need to get saved right now. You need to settle the matter of your eternal destiny right now, while you still can. Proverbs 27:1, “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth. Today might be your last day on earth.

To be saved, you must know some facts. First, you must know that you are a guilty sinner (Romans 3:19-20). There is a penalty for our sin, which is death (Romans 6:23). This includes a second death, burning in the fires of Hell for all eternal without hope, rest or end (Revelation 20:11-15; 21:8). But the GOOD NEWS (or, GOSPEL) is that God sent His only begotten (biological) Son, Jesus, into the world to die on a cross to pay for our sins (John 3:16). Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah, in whom anyone who places their trust (total confidence) is saved (John 20:31). What saith the Scripture? ...
1st Corinthians 15:1-4, “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
There we have it, THE GOSPEL:
  1. Jesus DIED on the cross for our sins.
  2. He was BURIED.
  3. Christ resurrected physically from the dead three days later.
If you'll simply BELIEVE this Good news, making it your own by faith in it, you will be immediately, irrevocably and forever born-again by God's Holy Spirit. Acts 16:30-31, “And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Paul and Silas extended the invitation to the Roman jailer's entire family. God desires to save all men (2nd Peter 3:9), but will only SAVE THEM THAT BELIEVE” (1st Corinthians 1:21b).

Simply BELIEVE the Gospel friend and God will save you. Just receive Christ's sacrifice on the cross as payment for your sins, believing that He died in your place and raised up three days later from the dead, by faith taking God at His Word as recorded in the Holy Bible, and He will save you now. Thank you for reading my blog.

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We Groan In This Earthly Body With Our Burdens

2nd Corinthians 5:4-10, “ For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened : not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon...