I am reading in Isaiah 5. I am going to paraphrase much of it as applied to God’s beloved today, his saints. For, God sent his beloved Son Jesus Christ to the earth to take on human form and to suffer and to eventually die on a cross for our sins. He who knew no sin became sin for us on that cross that we might become the righteousness of God. For, Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness.
So, when we believe in Jesus with God-given faith, we are crucified with Christ in death to sin, and we are resurrected with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Our old self was crucified with Christ in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin, but so we would be slaves to God and to his righteousness, resulting in eternal life.
God’s plan of salvation for our lives is that, by God’s grace, through God-given faith in Jesus Christ, we put to death our former way of living in sin and for self, and that now we walk in his ways, in his truth, and according to his commands (New Covenant). And it is that we bear much fruit for the kingdom of heaven in keeping with repentance as we do the works of God that he had planned in advance that we should walk in them.
But it appears, at least here in America, that the vast majority of those who call themselves the beloved of God today see Jesus’ sacrifice for their sins as forgiveness of all sins (past, present, and future), as an escape from punishment for their sin, and as the hope of heaven as their eternal destiny when they die. But they don’t see or they won’t see that Jesus died on that cross that we might die with him to sin and walk with him in obedience.
And so what they are yielding is mostly not “good fruit,” i.e. the fruit of righteousness and holiness, but they are yielding “wild fruit,” i.e. the fruit of self-will, and self-indulgence, and sinful pleasures. Many of them don’t even believe that God requires repentance, obedience, or submission to him as Lord, and so they deny the Lord and his will for our lives, and they follow after the false teachings of men who tickle their itching ears.
And so many of them are still walking according to the flesh and not according to the Spirit while they are claiming Jesus as their Savior and heaven as their eternal home. God’s plan and purpose for his people is that they would be people who would obey him, who would honor him as Lord, and who would hate and reject their sins. But, instead, the majority are embracing their sins, refusing to honor the Lord, and they are walking in the ways of the world and of the flesh and not in the ways of God.
Isaiah 5:20-23 ESV
“Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,
who put darkness for light
and light for darkness,
who put bitter for sweet
and sweet for bitter!
Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,
and shrewd in their own sight!
Woe to those who are heroes at drinking wine,
and valiant men in mixing strong drink,
who acquit the guilty for a bribe,
and deprive the innocent of his right!”
The situation that we have in the church, or more specifically in the institutional market-driven church, which is not the true church, is that we have many pastors who are teaching lies which are a mixture of truth and lies together in order to deceive the people. They have removed from the gospel of Jesus Christ God’s requirements for the forsaking of our sins, for obedience to our Lord and to his commands (New Covenant), and for honoring (respecting, reverencing) Jesus as Lord (Owner-Master).
And they have replaced God’s requirements of his people with human philosophy and with manmade doctrines created in the thinking of fleshly people who call themselves Christians but who have actually betrayed the Lord and they have deserted him. And so they are teaching Scriptures out of their context and they are twisting them to say what itching ears want to hear and to say what will be acceptable and pleasing to human flesh.
And they are attacking and maligning the true gospel and calling it “works-based salvation” while they replace it with a friendlier gospel which does not put sin to death in the “believer” but which allows sin to continue to reign supreme. And they convince their adherents that the true gospel is evil (false) and that the false (evil) gospel is truth and righteousness. So they are putting darkness for light and light for darkness, everything backwards.
For they are following the wisdom of the world and not the wisdom of God, while they disguise it as the wisdom of God in order to lead the masses away from pure devotion to Jesus Christ to remaining in slavery (addiction) to sin while they give them a false hope of heaven for when they die. And they are definitely honoring the guilty while they attack and malign the pure of heart because the pure are still following the gospel that Jesus taught and lived.
And the rest of Isaiah 5, both before and after this quoted passage, deals with God’s judgments against his people because they had rejected the ways of the Lord, the ways God had planned for them, and they were following after their own devices, instead. And this isn’t just Old Testament. The New Testament also warns of God’s judgments if we do not follow him in obedience, and if we do not forsake our sins, and if we do not honor him as Lord of our lives, and if we do not love our brothers and sisters in Christ.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Rev. 2-3; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8, 27; Rev 22:14-15]
An Original Work / August 8, 2012
Based off Ephesians 1:3-10 NIV
Praise be to God, the Father of Jesus,
Who has blessed us in heavenly realms.
For He chose us in Him from beginning
To be His holy children of God;
All in accord with His will and pleasure;
To the praise of His glorious grace.
In Jesus Christ we receive forgiveness.
We have redemption through His shed blood.
Glorious grace God freely has given us
In the One He loves and adores;
All in accord with the riches of His grace
Which He pours out on those He loves.
With all His wisdom and understanding,
God has made known His will unto us,
According to His will and good pleasure,
Purposed in Christ till all be fulfilled;
To bring all things on earth and in heaven
Under our Lord Christ; be unified.