Today's Bible Study, Authored by Arthur Cincotti. 01/29/2023
Listen to our Bible Study Discussion at: The Weight of the Past Podast
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The Weight of the Past
“...forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 3:13,14
Adam was created from the dust, in the image of God, and received the breath of life. He was a man without a past, but he was also designed to have a memory. When God commanded “the man, saying, ‘Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat…”
Gen. 2:16,17, it was necessary for Adam to remember that command.
As we have seen in past studies, there are good dimensions to design and corruptible dimensions. Memory is a gift of God’s design and a reflection of His likeness. In Gen. 9:15 God says to Noah, “and I will remember My covenant…” God charges the children of Israel to remember the Passover, and we are directed by Jesus, when celebrating the supper to, “do this in remembrance of Me”
Remember is translated “be mindful” in the YLT. and, Phil. 4:8 gives a list of good things to, “think on” or “meditate on”. These are God honoring expressions of the use of memory.
But we see how memory is subject to frailty and corruption.
In Gen. 3:1 we see Satan engaging “the Woman” in the realm of remembrance, and He immediately exploits her failure. In the wilderness of Exodus the children of Israel are inappropriately remembering Egypt (Num. 11.5) and longing to return as if there was some virtue there. The entire letter to the Galatians is a corrective epistle compelling them to remember the means of their salvation that they may not depart from the Spiritual life in Christ.
In essence, corrupted or inaccurate memory is a lie. It is a distortion or an outright departure from the truth. And we know who is the “father of” lies. Jn. 8:44
When we distort or exaggerate the truth, in the form of a story, or a remembrance, or prophecy a lie in the form of something comical or outright ungodly, we are exalting self and walking in the likeness of Satan. This was Satan’s real temptation in Gen. 3; exalt yourself by knowing the hidden knowledge, and be like me, desiring and receiving worship.
We may tell a story inaccurately hoping to get a favorable reaction (worship) or demonstrating ourselves to know something fully that we only know in part (exaltation).
Pastor Finn use to say, “the past is only useful for the school of remembrance”, but if that remembrance is inaccurate then the movement forward will also be off course.
Our words are powerful; more so than we understand. James says, “no man can tame the tongue”: Read Js. 3:1-12. We can and will have our confession.
We are new creations in Christ, II Cor. 5:17 and Eph. 4:20-24
The old man is dead, Rm. 6:3-6
Yet we resurrect him by giving him a voice with our perky stories about our past (which may be true), with inaccurate remembrances from our past, and with inappropriate prophecies about ourselves and others. Satan gains access and authority through our voices.
When we declare someone evil, that is a lie against the word of God. Rm. 12:14, “bless and do not curse.”
When we declare someone (even ourselves) contrary to how God created them; a loser, stupid, ugly, incompetent, gay, we; “bear false witness” Ex. 20:16
When we distort the truth we align with, “savage wolves”
We must be far more mindful of our speech!
Why exalt the old man by giving him a voice?
Col. 4:6 “Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.”
Rom. 15:18 “For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not accomplished through me, in word and deed, to make the Gentiles obedient”
Col. 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”
Col. 3:9, “Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds.”
II Cor. 10:5, “casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought (and subsequently, every word) into captivity to the obedience of Christ.”
“For My yoke is easy and My burden is light” Jesus, Mt. 11:30
Throw off the weight of the past. Give it to Jesus!
Give Him glory, honor and praise!!!
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