Worldliness Part 17 / “Make it so Number 1”


Walk in Wisdom – Gleanings from Scripture
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From: Psalm 106 – Worldliness Part 17

When I was a little boy, I once heard an older saint give testimony to the fact
that “Coca-Cola has never passed these lips.” For her, slugging down a Coke
was pretty worldly stuff. She’d be shocked in today’s world – eh?. Like her,
many of us have built our notions on worldliness upon cultural and personal
biases more than upon Scriptural bases. To be sure, what is seen culturally as
being non-Christian is something we have to deal with seriously. We do not want
to give needless offence, even to the ignorant – in or out of the Church. At the
same time, we need to know what Scripture really says, so that our consciences
are informed by God, and not by man. Hence, this brief study in Ps. 106. Here,
are to be found enduring, cross-cultural concepts of worldliness which apply at
all times in all places. Things like what we find in verses 32-33: “They angered
him at the waters of Meribah, and it went ill with Moses on their account, for they
made his spirit bitter, and he spoke rashly with his lips.” The full account is given
in Numbers 20. The water had run dry, and the congregation threatened to
stone Moses and Aaron. Moses had just survived Korah’s challenge and
rebellion. Then another group challenged Aaron’s authority. Both events ended
badly. Those siding with the rebels blamed Moses for the rebel’s demise. Now
they threatened again, and Moses has lost his cool. Instead of speaking to the
Rock as God commands, he strikes it and scolds the people. For his short
temperedness and misrepresentation of God, Moses is forbidden to enter
Canaan. He must own the results of his own sin in this regard. But what of the
people? The Psalm clearly illumines their part and culpability. And the core
problem is to be found in their provoking God’s leadership to take action, when
they were dissatisfied with God’s moving. When we perceive our “need” isn’t
being met by the person we perceive ought to be meeting it – and instead of
seeking God’s face and in love and humility working toward a solution – we take
up the world’s mantra: “Make it happen.” Worldly thinking never stops to ask
“what is God about in this?” It only responds by pressure. It seeks never to be
submitted to God’s working. It has it’s own standard. And Heaven help those
who don’t meet it for them.

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