What’s in your heart?
These rules may seem wise because they require strong devotion, pious self-denial, and severe bodily discipline. But they provide no help in conquering a person’s evil desires. Colossians 2:23
Back in Paul’s day, there were rules among the Jewish people that provided many opportunity for offense if not followed. Paul called them regulations of the world. Even though these rules were made up and enforced by the priest and religious leaders, Paul says they are basic principles of the physical nature. The laws were: do not touch certain things, do not eat certain things and do not handle/carry certain things. These “certain” things were defined in the law and the people were watched over carefully to ensure they were keeping these laws. Paul says that the enforcers of these laws thought they were wise in the process. However, he goes on to say that their wisdom was founded in self-imposed worship, false humility and harsh treatment of the body. He finishes by saying: Keeping these laws are not helpful in exposing the evil desires within a person’s heart.
Today, we have laws that are not for religious reason, but still physical and seemingly necessary for health and well being. The “laws” actually look similar to the religious laws of Paul’s day. Verse 21 describes those laws and we can easily translate them into our modern day health regulations. Colossians 2:21 says, “Do not touch,(wash your hands) do not taste, (Where a mask) do not handle, (Social distance 6ft apart)” While they are not bad actions to do and comply with, some would obey and enforce these rules as religiously as the leaders did in Paul’s day and be offended by those who do not closely comply. Yes, we understand that these are preventative measures that can be taken to protect from diseases that are in the air or carried by others. However, the way some would enforce these rule seem like they are depending their eternity on them, but we know that the real issues of eternal life come from within a person’s heart.
So where is the balance. Yes, we comply with rules and regulations of the physical nature to protect and ensure the health of others that we love and come into contact with. However, lets take a look a little deeper into the heart to discern what really matters. Many are saying 2020 has been the weirdest, wackiest and worst year ever, but I would ask: “What happened to you?” Answers would vary to: “I had to wear a mask.” “I couldn’t go to work or school.” Or maybe “We couldn’t go out to eat or shop.” I know there were bad things in the world going on, but the majority of people maintained life by making a few minor adjustments. Overall, the reports of great growth in the kingdom of Heaven should overshadow all the evil that has tried to overrun this year. God’s Kingdom has grown in unprecedented measures in 2020 and the LORD of the harvest has been sending out laborer like never before in history.
Today, I would ask you to examine any evil desires in your heart. Take a deep look within to see if you are holding any area back from your Heavenly Father. A question to ask yourself would be, “what things am I afraid of?” Fear in your heart indicates the areas you have not turned over to God and are trusting Him to handle. Once you identify your fear, quickly turn those things over to Him and receive your peace of mind today. Not in following a lot of rules and regulations, but in following the love and goodness of your Father. Then pray the LORD of the harvest to continue to send out laborers to bring in the final harvest before He returns (Matt. 9:38).
Today’s scripture reading: Colossians 2:20-23