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Lesson # Matt. 18:8-9
Study Material - Matt. 18:8-9
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.
8 Wherefore [de] if [ei] thy [sou] hand [cheir] or [e] thy [sou] foot [pous] offend thee [skandalizo] , cut [ekkopto] them [autos] off [ekkopto] , and [kai] cast [ballo] them from [apo] thee [se] [sou] : it is [esti] better [kalos] for thee [soi] to enter into [eiserchomai] [eis] life [zoe] halt [cholos] or [e] maimed [kullos] , rather than [e] having [echo] two [duo] hands [cheir] or [e] two [duo] feet [pous] to be cast [ballo] into [eis] everlasting [aionios] fire [pur] .
9 And [kai] if [ei] thine [sou] eye [ophthalmos] offend [skandalizo] thee [se] , pluck [exaireo] it [autos] out [exaireo] , and [kai] cast [ballo] it from [apo] thee [sou] : it is [esti] better [kalos] for thee [soi] to enter [eiserchomai] into [eis] life [zoe] with one eye [monophthalmos] , rather than [e] having [echo] two [duo] eyes [ophthalmos] to be cast [ballo] into [eis] hell [geenna] fire [pur] . KJV-Interlinear
8 'And if your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; it is better for you to enter life crippled or lame, than having two hands or two feet, to be cast into the eternal fire. 9 'And if your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out, and throw it from you. It is better for you to enter life with one eye, than having two eyes, to be cast into the fiery hell. NAS
Nothing in life is worth having if it keeps you from a spiritual life and the benefits that come with a spiritual life.
What is at stake? There are two destinies open to all people - heaven of hell. When we enter into this life (at the moment of our physical birth) we are dead spiritually. We have but one destiny - the lake of fire. Unless we die at a very young age (before we are old enough to understand things of theology - God, heaven, hell and such), then we will grow up physically in this life.
If we die prior to an age of accountability -a young child for example, then we automatically go to heaven. But, when we grow up to an age where we understand the issues in life, then we face these two possibilities in our future. There is only one issue in life and that issue is 'What do you think of Christ?' To believe means eternal life. To reject Christ means eternal condemnation.
If there were an issue that repeated itself in your life, and that issue constantly kept you from believing in Christ, then it would be far better for you to avoid that situation in order to have a chance to come to Christ by faith. Sin keeps you from God. Distractions in life whether social (external distractions) or whether personal (your own attitude), these can cause you an awful lot of 'eternal' grief.
Remember that your life is not just the physical life here on earth, which may be 20 or 40 or 100 years. We might think of it as long but after death our existence goes on and on forever. If we figure billions and trillions of years of existence into out life time, then our 20 or 100 years become insignificant in that greater picture. Why would anyone refuse to believe in Christ, a mere thought that would take you but a second to do, and risk going to hell? In a moment in time (literally) your destiny would change dramatically merely by believing in Christ.
Likewise, after salvation, then each believer has a different question to address, 'What do you think of Bible doctrine?' Again a great deal is at stake. Everyone who believes in Christ will go to heaven. Everyone who believes in Christ will receive a resurrection body. Everyone who believes in Christ will receive many, many blessings not only in time (during this life), but also in eternity. But, there are additional blessings at stake. Blessings that come only to those who advance to spiritual maturity in this life.
Just as the lake of fire and heaven are infinitely apart, so too are the additional blessings due to spiritual maturity, infinitely greater than the general blessings which everyone receives. Moses is often used to illustrate this difference. Moses turned his back on tremendous blessings in Egypt because he saw the blessings of heaven as far greater than anything of this world.
So too, in our individual lives, we have the opportunity to advance to spiritual maturity and thus qualify with certainty, for those 'greater' blessings of eternity. No only that, but in our current life we will enjoy many 'greater' blessings as well as the privilege of being used by God in some form in world history. This is a tremendous blessing.
But, again, if you allow something to interfere with your spiritual advance then you would be far better off if you avoided the situations which tempt you toward sin and away from God and your spiritual growth. You risk losing a great deal by allowing yourself to slip away from your spiritual life. There is nothing in life, nothing, which can even approach the value of the blessings that accompany spiritual maturity.
As drastic as it sounds, the illustrations of cutting off a body part in order to avoid sin and thus remain on track with ones spiritual growth, perfectly illustrates the magnitude and the extreme importance of what you are throwing away when you get side tracked from your Bible study.
Again, there is nothing in life worth having when it short circuits your spiritual growth. So do not be sinful, do not be greedy, do not be obstinate, do not be opinionated, do not be filled with self pity, do not do a lot of things that run contrary to your spiritual growth. You hurt only yourself.
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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