TAKE HOLD (Pt. 3)

“But Jesus said to him, “No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (‭Luke‬ ‭9‬:‭62‬ NASB)

 CALLED BUT NOT CONVINCED

 Luke records the words of Jesus to a man called to be his disciple (Luke 9). The only problem was that he wanted to follow Him on his own terms. Jesus teaches, by way of a cultural illustration of His day that the plow man “takes hold” of the plow and does not look back. He teaches that committing to be a disciple of the Kingdom of God requires no compromise. Only by leaning forward and into the plow can one make a deep furrow in the ground and make progress. Only by fixing one’s eye on what is ahead can a straight row be made.

 There are many who have heard Yeshua’s call to “Come. Follow Me!” but they are distracted. They are “called but not convinced” that following Jesus is the only true life worth living. And yet, we read in Proverbs 21, “He who pursues righteousness and loyalty finds life, righteousness and honor” (‭Proverbs‬ ‭21‬:‭21‬ NASB).

There is a mystery that is disclosed to those who pursue God’s kingdom in Jesus, the Messiah… The things we formerly pursued PURSUE US.(See Matthew 6:33).

 CALLED BUT NOT CONVERTED

 The apostle Paul always had a Cross-cultural team of workers as he advanced the Kingdom of God. None stood out more in excellency of character as well as in potential apostolic function like Timothy. His mother was a godly Jewish women. His father was a Greek. Paul invested his time and attention modeling what true ministry and apostolic labor involved. No doubt, seeing his potential successor, he writes as a spiritual father to young

Timothy, to “flee the things of the world”. But he also exhorts,”But…you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith; TAKE HOLD [Caps. Mine] of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. (‭1 Timothy‬ ‭6‬:‭11-12‬ NASB).”

 We need to make full proof of our calling to eternal life. Unfortunately, many of those who use the name of “Christian” use it as nothing more than a badge of religion. They have no fruit of a relationship to Jesus, the One who has given his life in order to redeem them from this present dark world. Many are called but not yet converted.

What a terrible day it will be for those who stand alone before the King of kings and Judge of judges and have no fruit bearing witness to a life lived for Jesus.

“Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward” (‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭3‬:‭12-14‬ NASB).

Paul tells us that we are building an eternal home. The question is,”What materials are you using? I heard Leonard Ravenhill point out that, “Wood, hay, and stubble is that which is seen above the ground. Gold, silver, and precious stones are found beneath the ground.” What’s the point? Some build in time, for what men can see and applaud. Others live in light of eternity, with an eye for God’s approval alone. If we would hear, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant”, we must “Take hold of that which is eternal life indeed”.

 CALLED AND CHOSEN

Yeshua(Jesus) tells us that “Many are called but few are chosen”…Fewer still are faithful. Why? Because they allowed the things of the earth to dim the light of eternity. Like the foolish virgins the light they had was going out. In other words, the light they had within them had become dark(Matthew 25). Many today, neither see where they are going nor can they lead others to His marvelous light. It’s time to “take hold of eternal life”. And when we do, we emit His light for others to find their way to the Savior of the world.

 

(c) Copyright 2014, Walter Fletcher Jr. All rights reserved. This article may be copied and shared free of charge provided that it is not sold or altered in any way from its original content. Please address all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

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