Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love. I Corinthians 16:13, 14 NKJV

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Living a Truly Balanced Life...series ...Diet

The following is from Morris Venden's "Hard to be Lost ~ Good News: God won't give you up without a fight."


What do we think of when we think of proper diet in the spiritual sense? Of course, we are talking about eating the Word of God. "Thy words were found, and I did eat them" (Jeremiah 15:16). Jesus said, "I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst." (John 6:35) In John 6:53-56, Jesus said,
Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whose eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him." 
This was a mystery to those people who heard it, but if they had thought a little further along some of the lines that their Old Testament prophets had written, they wouldn't have been as confused. We have insights as to what this is all about today. It is by receiving the life poured out for us on Calvary's cross that we can live the life of holiness. And this life we receive by receiving His Word.
Let's dwell for just a minute on the illustration. Jesus said that we need to eat His flesh and drink His blood. When we think of His flesh and His blood, we think of HIs spilled blood and broken body. And when we think of that, we think of the cross, we think of death, and we think of our Substitute. So to eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of God is to take into our lives what He has done for us. We accept into our lives, our hearts, our minds, our very existence, what Jesus had done for us. Now, a person does this when he first comes to Jesus, after reaching the end of his own resources and accepting Jesus as his personal Saviour. But that isn't enough, any more than the baby's first meal is enough. Eating His flesh and drinking His blood must be a daily matter. Jesus is the One who used the similarity between the physical and the spiritual. Genuine conversation is a needed, not once, but daily. This conversion brings man into a new relation with God, but this work must be continual. No renewed heart can be kept in a condition of sweetness without daily application of the salt of the Word. Divine grace must be received daily, or no one will stay converted. I suppose that's why Jesus had something to say about iniquity abounding and the love of many waxing cold. "but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved"(Matthew 24:13).
So let's accept Jesus' own analogy that eating is a daily matter. What are we going to eat? We are going to accept nourishment from His Word. That is the source of our spiritual food. But just reading the Bible is not enough. I'd like to remind you that knowledge, just simple knowledge, might destroy us.
"The greatest deception of the human mind in Christ's day was that a mere assent to the truth constitutes righteousness. In all human experience a theoretical knowledge of the truth has been proved to be insufficient for the saving of the soul. IT does not bring forth the fruits of righteousness. A jealous regard for what is termed theological truth often accompanies a hatred of genuine truth as made manifest in life. The darkest chapters of history are burdened with the record of crimes committed by bigoted religionists (The Desire of Ages, p. 309) 
Our only hope is not only to know the words of Scripture, but to realize that scriptural difficulties and scriptural understandings are never mastered by the same methods that are employed in grappling with philosophical problems. Understanding Bible truth depends not so much on the power of intellect brought to the search as on the singleness of purpose, the earnest longing after righteousness.
And, of course, that is what the initial experience of conversion will motivate us to do. And only Jesus can bring truth to us that's more than words, that goes deep into the heart, deep into the soul. I'd like to ask you, my friend, are you really longing after righteousness? Are you hungering and thirsting for God, more than just going through the form of reading words out of a book? I'm thankful that Jesus ahs promised the Holy Spirit to be our teacher, for without Him we're sunk.
But the most important ingredient in the spiritual diet in the realization that the cross is our only hope. The enemy knows that, and so he constantly tries to cause what grasped our attention in the first place to fade from view. That
's why we should spend a thoughtful hour each day in contemplation of the cross. That's the good diet- the life of Christ, especially the closing scenes. To remove the cross from the Christian would be like blotting the sun from the sky, for without the cross, man would have no union with the Father. On it depends our only hope. From it shines the light of the Saviour's love, and when at the foot of the cross the sinner looks up to the One who died to save Him, he may rejoice with fullness of joy that his sins are pardoned. Kneeling in faith at the cross, he has reached the highest place to which man can attain. And that's what your devotion life is going to center around. If your attention doesn't focus around the cross, then the foundation of the Christian gospel is going to fade from your mind and become hazy, and all you have left is to become a theoretical or pseudo-Christian who grapples with philosophical religious problems but seldom if ever focuses on Jesus.
Diet= eating the Word of God ~  Jeremiah 15:16
Be sure to check back - next we will be going over Exercise and what is it's equal Christian experience. You won't want to miss it. :O)

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