I’m Damned if I do and I’m Damned if I don’t – It’s Hopeless – Lies of the Enemy #17– Purity 1029
Purity 1029 04/28/2023 Purity 1029 Podcast
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Today’s photo of the moon over Lake Ontario just before midnight comes to us from Celestial Blue Photography (https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100069048257152) , as Rocco Saya must have been out walking before Midnight, as he shared this photo he entitled “Night Dreams” from his April 24th, 11:30 pm, excursion to Breitbeck Park in Oswego NY on social media a couple of days ago. I may sound old but 11:30pm on a Monday, or any day these days, is way past my bed time and I am thankful that Rocco was up and out there to capture this dream of a night time scene.
As a former night owl, I know that the evening hours hold a peace and a magic all its own and that many prefer the evenings peace to the light of day. But I also know that the dark evening hours also provides a sense of cover in which the dark desires of the heart can come out to play. It doesn’t have to be that way of course but I fully understand the adage that “nothing good” happens after certain designated hours of the night. Is it midnight, is it 2 am, is it 3am? I’m not sure but if you are up that late, I would invite you to ask yourself why? What are you looking for? What are you hiding from? Are you looking for love in all the wrong places, like I used to? Or are you on a search for excitement or meaning, that I know is best found in the presence of the Lord.
Well, It’s Friday -Thank God! And I am rejoicing this morning and almost have that old excitement of the anticipation of Friday NIGHT! That usually meant that I was looking forward to mischief but now is the pure excitement of knowing, if the Lord wills it, I will be in the presence of my beloved wife. Reunited and it feels so good. That’s right there is nothing like the excitement of true love without shame or guilt. So instead of running down the cheap thrills of a night on the town seek God’s plan to get thee a wife or husband with whom you can be “naked and unashamed”. Whoa!
Anyway, The night time hours are also sometimes referred to as the “desperate hours” and remembering my youthful life of sin, I know how desperately lonely someone running through the night can be. In that desperation we can make some regrettable decisions. Somes give themselves away to the lust of the flesh and others lash out at the world with violence at the smallest offense. Not many people out at the clubs or bars at night have a deep relationship with the Lord, so the later things get the more unpredictable the outcomes of the evening’s final destination can become. Home alone, a stranger’s bed, the hospital, jail, or the morgue are all possibilities in a lifestyle where “anything goes”. Those hours out in the dark without God can be desperate because without Him nothing will bring satisfaction or peace. So those desperate hours can be hopeless too and may cause some to lament:
“I’m damned if I do and I’m damned if I don’t! It’s hopeless!”
Which just happens to be the 17th lie of the enemy that we will examine as a part of our current series, The Lies of the Enemy, which is an examination of some of the common lies, sometimes sneakily whispered into our minds as “first person” statements, that the enemy tells us to cause us to doubt our faith, lose our peace, cause division, or influence us to not follow the Lord with the way we live our lives. So in case you didn’t catch it, today’s big lie is:
Lie #17: “I’m damned if I do and I’m damned if I don’t! It’s hopeless!”
This particular lie of the enemy is whispered into people’s ears to bring them to their destruction or to keep them locked in bondages and mired in depression. As a Community Freedom Ministry Associate for Freedom in Christ Ministries, I have heard variations of this lie several times as people I have led through the steps to Freedom in Christ have confessed about their past or current troubles when they can’t see an easy solution to their problems.
This lie can lead people to want to commit suicide because they can’t see a way out. This lie makes people see their options as limited and their lives as hopeless. But it is a lie born of tunnel vision and possibly sown by the spiritual forces of darkness who are hell bent on the destruction of those who believe it.
But that’s a lie, there is hope and our actions matter.
But I won’t sugar coat this. While we can affect change in our lives and can generally endure through troubling times, people don’t always get a happy ending in the natural. And that’s why we simply must put our hope in Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
While there is hope, where there is life. That hope evaporates when you die, if you haven’t peace with God through faith in Jesus Christ.
Oh by the way, I researched “where there is hope there is life” to see who said that and one of the people who said that unknowingly spoke that hopeful statement as a lie. Among the many people who have been attributed to have said those words through the ages, Google offered up devote atheist, Stephen Hawking as saying those hopeful words even though, he believed there was no God. So I guess if we are to follow this departed genius’ logic, we have to believe that now that he is dead there is no hope for Stephen Hawking, or at least no hope for heaven. If you don’t believe in God, you can’t believe He had a Son who died for you in which to put your hope in.
Jesus is the way, the truth and the life – Those who believe in and put their faith in Him – although they die, they shall live. So there is an eternal hope that we have in Christ.
God will help us through many trials in our lives, but even if we should perish, we will live. Christ conquered death and the grave, and so the Christian has the hope of heaven and life everlasting in God’s kingdom. We shouldn’t blow that off when times get tough, it is the hope that can give us the wisdom to go to God to receive the strength and guidance that He can provide that will cause us to know peace and joy even in the most dire of circumstances.
On the earth, if you have a problem and it seems that you are “damned if you do and damned if you don’t”, remember it’s not hopeless. Go to the Lord for wisdom, He knows everything and I know that He will make a way when is there is no way, even if it takes a long time or it involves suffering. God will show His way – the third option of hope, meaning, and purpose that has victory, freedom and triumph at the end of its path.
So don’t believe the lie that “It’s hopeless!” because if you have Christ, you have everything. You have eternal life and the hope of God working all things together for your good.
For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple apologetic will provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .
Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.
This morning’s meditation verse :
John 16:33 (NKJV)
33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."
Today’s verse reminds us of how good God is as it aligns perfectly with our hopeful encouragement! Christ has overcome the world and we can be overcomers because of Him. We can have peace because of Him. While we will have tribulations in this world – how’s that for a promise – we can be of good cheer -that’s joy – because of what Christ did for us. He paid for our sins and gives us forgiveness and peace with God and brings us into the royal family of God’s kingdom through faith in Him!
So trust in the Lord, and never forget the hope we have because of the One who overcame the world and gave us eternal life!
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue sharing from A.W. Pink’s “The Sovereignty of God.”
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work. This resource is available on many websites for less than $20.00.
THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD
By ARTHUR W. PINK
1 John 2:2
In the fourth place, when John added, “And not for ours only, but also for the whole world,” he signified that Christ was the propitiation for the sins of Gentile believers too, for, as previously shown, “the world” is a term contrasted from Israel. This interpretation is unequivocally established by a careful comparison of 1 John 2:2 with John 11:51, 52, which is a strictly parallel passage: “And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also He should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.” Here Caiaphas, under inspiration, made known for whom Jesus should “die.” Notice now the correspondency of his prophecy with this declaration of John’s:
“He is the propitiation for our (believing Israelites) sins.”
“He prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation.”
“And not for ours only.”
“And not for that nation only.”
“But also for the whole world”—
That is, Gentile believers scattered throughout the earth.
“He should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad.”
In the fifth place, the above interpretation is confirmed by the fact that no other is consistent or intelligible. If the “whole world” signifies the whole human race then the first clause and the “also” in the second clause are absolutely meaningless. If Christ is the propitiation for everybody, it would be idle tautology to say, first, “He is the propitiation for our sins and also for everybody.” There could be no “also” if He is the propitiation for the entire human family. Had the apostle meant to affirm that Christ is a universal propitiation he had omitted the first clause of v. 2, and simply said, “He is the propitiation for the sins of the whole world.” Confirmatory of “not for ours (Jewish believers) only, but also for the whole world”—Gentile believers, too; compare John 10:16; 17:20.
In the sixth place, our definition of “the whole world” is in perfect accord with other passages in the New Testament. For example: “Whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the Gospel; which is come unto you, as it is in all the world” (Col. 1:5, 6). Does “all the world” here mean, absolutely and unquilifiedly, all mankind? Had all the human family heard the Gospel? No; the apostle’s obvious meaning is that, the Gospel, instead of being confined to the land of Judea, had gone abroad, without restraint, into Gentile lands. So in Rom. 1:8: “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.” The apostle is here referring to the faith of these Roman saints being spoken of in a way of commendation. But certainly all mankind did not so speak of their faith! It was the whole world of believers that he was referring to! In Revelation 12:9 we read of Satan “which deceiveth the whole world.” But again this expression cannot be understood as a universal one, for Matt. 24:24 tells us that Satan does not and cannot “deceive” God’s elect. Here it is “the whole world” of unbelievers.
In the seventh place, to insist that “the whole world” in 1 John 2:2 signifies the entire human race is to undermine the very foundations of our faith. If Christ is the propitiation for those that are lost equally as much as for those that are saved then what assurance have we that believers too may not be lost? If Christ is the propitiation for those now in hell what guarantee have I that I may not end in hell? The blood-shedding of the incarnate Son of God is the only thing which can keep any one out of hell, and if many for whom that precious blood made propiation are now in the awful place of the damned, then may not that blood prove inefficacious for me! Away with such a God-dishonoring thought.
However men may quibble and wrest the Scriptures, one thing is certain: The Atonement is no failure. God will not allow that precious and costly sacrifice to fail in accomplishing, completely, that which it was designed to effect. Not a drop of that holy blood was shed in vain. In the last great Day there shall stand forth no disappointed and defeated Saviour, but One who “shall see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied” (Isa. 53:11). These are not our words, but the infallible assertion of Him who declares, “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure” (Isa. 64:10). Upon this impregnable rock we take our stand. Let others rest on the sands of human speculation and twentieth-century theorizing if they wish. That is their business. But to God they will yet have to render an account. For our part we had rather be railed at as a narrow-minded, out of-date, hyper-Calvinist, than be found repudiating God’s truth by reducing the Divinely-efficacious atonement to a mere fiction.
PRINCIPAL TEXTS EXAMINED
Genesis 6:3 218
Genesis 6:6 208
Genesis 20:6 125, 156
Exodus 4:21 131
Exodus 34:24 125
Numbers 23:12–20 157
1 Samuel 3:18 194
1 Samuel 6: 46
2 Chronicles 20:5, 6 241
Psalm 110:3 56, 71
Psalm 147:15–18 44
Proverbs 16:1 49
Proverbs 16:9 49
Proverbs 19:21 49
Proverbs 21:1 49
Isaiah 10:5–7 129
Isaiah 46:9, 10 118
Amos 4:7–10 45
Jonah 2:9 55
Matthew 23:37 208
Matthew 25:41 110
Luke 14:16–23 85
John 3:8 77
John 3:16 212
John 6:38 67
John 6:44 160
John 8:36 158
John 11:49–52 72
John 16:8–11 82
John 19:10 245
Acts 7:51, 52 218
Acts 13:48 58
Acts 17:28 48
Acts 17:30 110
Romans 9:17–23 92
Romans 11:5 59
1 Corinthians 1:26–29 60
1 Corinthians 4:7 56
2 Corinthians 5:14 73
Ephesians 1:3–5 61
2 Thessalonians 2:13 79, 81
1 Timothy 2:5, 6 75
1 Timothy 5:21 38
2 Timothy 1:9 63
Hebrews 2:9 76
1 Peter 1:2 63, 82
2 Peter 2:12 106
2 Peter 3:9 216
Jude 8 17
Revelation 4:11 119
Revelation 17:17 243
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Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship
 Arthur W. Pink, The Sovereignty of God (Swengel, PA: Bible Truth Depot, 1949), 271–273.