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Lesson # Matt. 18:5
Study Material - Matt. 18:5
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
5 And [kai] whoso [hos] [ean] shall receive [dechomai] one [heis] such [toioutos] little child [paidion] in [epi] my [mou] name [onoma] receiveth [dechomai] me [eme] . KJV-Interlinear
5 'And whoever receives one such child in My name receives Me; NAS
The child is the illustration of the soul of the believer, the one who has received Christ as savior through faith, not through or by means of some human work or ego driven attitude of self accomplishment. Certainly not from the desire to be the 'greatest.'
The believer is Christ. For by believing in Christ we become indwelled by Christ as well as the other two members of the Trinity (we are indwelled by all three members of the Trinity - Father, Son, and Spirit - see the 'blessings list' on the Index page). Any good things done to or for the believer is done to Christ. Any bad things done to the believer is done to Christ, because we are members of His person. Christ is the head and we are the body, 1 Cor. 12:27. He is the vine and we are the branches, Jn. 15:5.
If anyone rejects the believer, then Christ is rejected, Lk. 10:16. Saul was caught by Jesus Christ on the road the Damascus. Saul was persecuting believers and Jesus asks 'why he was persecuting Him, Jesus,' Acts 9:4. Saul had never seen Jesus, yet Saul's attacks against believers were the same as attacking Christ who indwells every believer in this Church Age.
When Christ returns He will sort out all of the believers (sheep) and the unbelievers (goats). The former will go to the right and a place of honor , the latter to the left and a place of dishonor. Matthew 25 spells this out,
Matt 25:31-40, 31 'But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. 32 'And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; 33 and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left. 34 'Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 'For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.' 37 'Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You drink? 38 'And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 'And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' 40 'And the King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'
Two lessons are taught here. First humility is the over all point to be learned. Humility is the absence of arrogance. Arrogance is a sin and is the foundation of all other sins. All other sins grow out of arrogance. If one is in fellowship then one does not have sin in the life, therefore arrogance is not there. The only thing left is humility. Humility is not an external characteristic that can be viewed, but is an attitude of soul.
Humility applies to yourself and to others. We are not to engage in sins with others or toward others. No joint sinning, no going along with the gang so to speak, whether criminal or social. Certainly no gossip, hate, revenge, bitterness, implacability, jealousy and so forth is to be harbored against others for any reason. No matter that they caused pain or loss to you (real or imagined). We are to suck it up, if you will, and move on in our life without retaliation, without reaction against others. There is no place for instigating gossip, bitterness or judging against others. Your place is not to judge others.
By taking an active aggressive role against others you risk taking action against Christ (if they are a believer). As such, Christ will deal harshly (heavy discipline) against you. You lose! In doctrine there is the concept called triple discipline. It comes from your activity against others. First you commit a sin - bad enough - strike one, but you directed it toward someone else, bad again - strike two, and God deflects that sin you directed against them back onto yourself - strike three (out)! Your victim gets off free and is blessed to boot. You end up with a mess of discipline. This is one of the reasons that you should not gossip. You are just digging a deeper hole for yourself and your life will be miserable. The more you gossip, the more your life will be miserable.
So much for others. As for yourself, the same principles apply. You have Christ in you. You are either in fellowship or out of fellowship. In fellowship means that you are inside the will of God and blessings flow toward you. Out of fellowship means that you are under the control of the sin nature, and thus insulting Christ who is in you - discipline.
The long and short of this all is to simply get along with others and avoid sinful situations. To be in fellowship and therefore be under the control of the Holy Spirit and therefore inside the will of God. This then is where you will find your perfect world. None of this 'make love not war' nonsense.
And speaking of war. Your prayers should go out in behalf of our military personnel in Iraq, for their protection and a very quick and certain victory. Let our arrows fly straight and true and the arrows of the enemy fall short with impotence.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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