Print

WHO'S PULLING YOUR STRINGS?

© Rosemary Bardsley 2016

INTRODUCTION

Talk about puppets - control, authority.

Ask: who's in control of your life - the world, the flesh, the devil, or Jesus Christ?

In Matthew 7 Jesus gives us three word pictures that challenge us to think about what is determining our mindset and motivates our choices, attitudes and actions.

 

1. THE WIDE AND NARROW GATES - READ MATTHEW 7:13,14

Are we letting the majority dictate our mindset, our choices, our attitudes and our actions?

Do we let the materialism of the majority persuade us that things are important and allow this materialism to determine our attitudes and our lifestyle?

Do we let the majority, with its mindset of anti-supernaturalism, evolution and secular humanism,  dictate our concept of the world, the future, God, sin, the Bible?

Do we let the hedonism of the majority convince us that pleasure is the ultimate good, that if something feels good or makes us feel good it is right, that we should seek excitement, that we should insist on our rights?

Do we let the prevalent postmodern despair convince us that there is no meaning, no purpose, no hope?

Jesus said:

'I am the door - whoever enters through me will be saved' [John 10:7,9].

'I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through me' [John 14:6].

 

2. THE TREE AND ITS FRUIT - READ MATTHEW 7:15-23

Are we letting false teachers pull our strings? [Are we letting the Devil pull our strings?]

False 'Christian' cults

New Age, humanism, one world government

Occult

Non-biblical directions within the church [very deceptive - because they look good, appear biblical, use the same words].

Some warnings:

2 Peter 2:1,2
2Timohty 4:3-5
1Timothy 4:1,2
2Thessalonians 2:9-10
2Corinthians 11:3,4,13-15
Mark 13:22-23

 

About 'fruit' -

'Fruit' is not spectacular phenomena or even apparently biblical phenomena. 'Fruit' is submission to the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ. See Matthew 7:21-23.

God's Word says:

John 8:12
Ephesians 5:8-11
John 8:30-32

 

3.THE WISE AND FOOLISH BUILDERS - MATTHEW 7:24-27

Satan deceives us into thinking we can follow Jesus and do as we please, that obedience is optional.

Are we letting our sinful natures (the flesh) pull our strings?
The significance of hearing and obeying.
Obedience validates belief.

 

Genesis 3:

Rebellion against the right of God to rule
Rebellion against the authority of God.
Rejection of God as Lord.
Wanting to be one's own Lord/God/boss.

 

The Christian's submission:

Jesus said 'Follow me'
Romans 12:1-2
Ephesians 4:1

 

CONCLUSION:

We must not deceive ourselves.
We must not delude ourselves.
We must not confuse ourselves.

 

Nor must we let anyone else deceive, delude or confuse us.

The Christian is a person who gives to Jesus Christ the right to pull their strings:

He IS the Lord.

The Gospel call is a call not only to believe but also to repent - to reverse the rebellion of Genesis 3.

True biblical faith includes both trust and obedience.

JESUS IS THE LORD - THAT IS THE BOTTOM LINE.